Content marketing is a process of providing a relevant and useful content to your prospects and customers to satisfy their information needs. You can consider it a more legitimate and respectful way of interacting with customers than traditional marketing and advertising.
Purpose of content marketing is not on directly promoting your product or service but on sharing information and ideas that benefit others. Overt sales pitches do not resonate with today’s consumer and content marketing offers an ideal, non-intrusive way to get your message across.
What’s the difference between content marketing and inbound marketing?
People often ask if there is a difference between content marketing and another related methodology known as inbound marketing. The concepts are fundamentally linked: both require quality content, are non-intrusive and have a defined audience. The differences lie in their scope.
Content marketing revolves around the creation and distribution of content across multiple channels. Inbound marketing on the other hand goes beyond the principles of content marketing and focuses on the specific tools, technologies and processes required to drive actions that lead to sales. These include:
- landing pages
- contact capture forms
- CRM integration
- calls to action
- email marketing integration
- SEO optimization
- social publishing
Content marketing is a component of the bigger picture of inbound marketing. Both concepts must work hand in hand. You can’t generate leads and sales without great content but you also need the specific inbound mechanisms in place to enable those conversions.
What are the benefits of content marketing?
In today’s digital economy, content marketing is perhaps the most effective method your business can employ to reach out to both established customers and prospects. However, if you are yet to be convinced about whether to adopt a content strategy or not, here are the some benefits which may help you take decisions:
It Helps Build Trust
If you consistently provide useful content, users will consider you a reliable information source and keep coming back to your site for more great content. Those users will in turn become loyal fans and brand advocates.
Increases Brand Exposure
Good content marketing offers people something interesting to talk about. When users talk about your brand, your messages reach a wider audience and expose your company to a potentially larger pool of prospective customers.
It Allows You Take Advantage of Organic Search
Search engines have changed the business landscape forever. According to research, 97% of consumers use popular search engines to perform a local search for goods and services before making a purchase. Also, over 80% performed product research via search engines before deciding on making a purchase. If your marketing strategy does not weigh heavily towards your business showing up during those searches then you are doing your business a disservice. It’s best not to be among the up to 44% of small business which don’t even have websites.
It Allows You Take Advantage of Social Shares
People share things they like. It’s just the way humans are wired. Your content marketing strategy-and by extension, your business-could benefit from this by producing great content that will inevitably spread like wildfire through the social space, reaching customers you might previously have never reached by any other means. You could have your very own gift that keeps on giving.
Adds Authority And Credibility
Quality content enables you to demonstrate your expertise, adds credibility to your brand and will establish you as an authority in your industry.
Improves Your SEO
Before Google delivers your site on a results page, it will determine how relevant your content is to that search query. To do this, advanced algorithms will accurately assess the quality of your content. Relevant, useful content will get you a more prominent position on the results page. It will also attract authority backlinks which Google favors.
In conclusion, content marketing is a highly effective, non-intrusive way to communicate with today’s busy consumer. It works in conjunction with the tools and methodologies of inbound marketing and offers many benefits to help grow your business.