A wise man once said, “Content is king.” That wise man was Bill Gates who, let’s face it, knows a thing or two about the digital world. Back in 1996 (which is centuries ago in fast-moving technology years) the Microsoft co-founder predicted that “content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet.”
Twenty-five years later, content still reigns supreme. In fact, it’s the secret sauce to any marketing strategy that can give you an advantage over your competitors and 67% more leads than companies without content or content-rich websites. And did we mention content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing?
Yet, content is such a broad term covering a host of categories such as blogs, videos, and infographics, it can be hard to know where to start. That’s why we’ve put together our top three tips for creating an effective content strategy that will, as Gates predicted, bring in the “real money.”
Focus on your customers
The golden rule of content is that it must be relevant to your audience. It must connect with them, grab their attention, and give them what they want. To achieve this you need to know them inside out. What are their wants, their needs, and their pain points? And how can your products, services, or sector experience help them? This is where web, social media, and email subscriber analytics come into their own, providing you with the data you need to create a portrait of your typical customer.
You can then tailor your content to provide your customers with value. This increases the likelihood they’ll share it, which boosts your audience reach, thereby increasing your potential sales. One other advantage of knowing your audience is that it will help you identify the best content channels on which to reach them. This neatly brings us on to…
Engage with customers on social media
It’s predicted that by 2025, there will be almost 51 million active social network users in the UK. That’s a lot of potential customers for you to target. One study by the Content Marketing Institute found that 94% of B2B companies use social media for content marketing. Of those, 78% said LinkedIn is the most effective channel. The key is to identify and utilise the social platforms that your customers use.
Whether it’s Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram, social media marketing is a fantastic way to directly engage with anyone interested in your brand. Posting informative content that helps customers with a problem fosters relationships and builds trust, and 62% of people who trust a brand will remain loyal to it.
Depending on your brand – and budget – social media influencer marketing content has, in some cases, delivered a 600% return on investment. Alternatively, existing customers can become brand advocates sharing content about your brand in exchange for discounted or free products or services. With 81% of people saying they’re directly influenced by their friends’ recommendations and posts on Facebook, real customer testimonials can make a huge difference to your bottom line.
Target SEO performance
Every brand wants to rank higher in Google searches. One way to increase your chances of appearing on the hallowed page one of the results is to generate quality content. That’s because Google prioritises websites that provide the most accurate results to what people are searching for.
Therefore, once you discover what answers or solutions your audience is looking for, creating content tailored to their needs means they’re more likely to discover your brand in search results, which increases the likelihood they’ll buy from you.
So, in summary, when it comes to content: think customer, get social, target SEO, and reap the benefits.
Need help developing a content strategy that will build your brand and attract your ideal customers? Get in touch with us today.