They say that content is king, well, good content is anyway. When done right, content has the ability to build audiences that might have an interest in your products and services, gaining you more leads, more sales, and more business. But what exactly is content marketing and how do you do it?
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is the difference outwardly telling your target audience to buy your products and services and getting their interest in your products and services. It says more than just, “Buy this product!” It engages past, current, and potential customers and clients in what you do and how you do it. It’s a tool to encourage them to explore your work with the end goal of getting them to your website or platform, making that purchase, booking your services, or even a simple as starting a conversation about what you can offer them. You also want to be sure that your website is the best it can be, so make sure it’s up to date, well designed, and running properly. If you need support getting your website in tip-top shape, MangoMatter are the people to call upon.
Types of Content Marketing
Blogging is the perfect way for businesses to showcase what they do, how they do it, and all of their knowledge and expertise. If you sell pottery you might produce a blog post on beginners’ pottery. Run a bakery? Why not publish cake recipes online.
Videos, like images, are great on fast-paced platforms but videos can also be used on your website to enhance your products. For example, you might shoppable videos which are videos that include embedded links to products that are featured in the video, making it more alluring for customers to want to buy your products.
Everyone has an email and we check it multiple times a day, it’s for this reason that emails are a really useful form of marketing.
Visuals (images, infographics, gifs, and memes) are key content on every fast past online platform where you only have a few seconds to catch the attention of new audiences. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are great places to share images, gifs, and memes that tell the world about your business in one quick snapshot.
eBooks are a fantastic way of sharing your knowledge and expertise and are often used by businesses to encourage potential customers to buy their products but more particularly, their services. For example, say you’re a writing coach. You might publish a book teaching people how to write their first novel with the premise of inviting potential customers to book you for your coaching services because you can demonstrate your experience and knowledge.
Like eBooks, white papers are designed to share information but lean more towards being data-driven. For this reason, white papers are more commonly used in B2B businesses. Guilty as charged, we also created one.
More service-led companies will use case studies to focus on the experience of clients who have used their services. Case studies are longer than reviews and are more detailed in what the client needed and how the business provided a solution.
Social Media Posts
Social media posts are more than just a tool to showcase your content, social media posts can also be your content and often take time to craft and plan. A simple tweet to your followers can spark a conversation that gains the attention of thousands of people on Twitter, people who may not even follow you.
How to make it work
Plan content in advance
The best content is the content that has been well thought out and time and effort put into it. That doesn’t mean if you suddenly have a good idea for fresh content you shouldn’t follow up on it. It simply means that you shouldn’t create content for the sake of creating content. By planning your content in advance you are ensuring that your messaging is correct and engaging. Top tip: Think quality over quantity every time.
Stay on brand
It’s easy to want to put content out because you think it’s funny or interesting. But in truth, if it doesn’t fit within your brand’s mission, tone, or image don’t put it out there. So many brands are in danger of trying too hard they lose sight of simply being themselves.
Combine content to maximize quality
There is no right or wrong way to use content but you can mix and match content to create better quality and more effective results. Here are some examples of combining content to maximize impact:
- Include strong and interesting visuals in your blog posts, make sure your images are high quality, and use the memes and gifs you’ve spent so much time creating.
- Take your email campaigns to the next level by embedding shoppable videos into your content.
- Take your quizzes to your social media posts to reach more people and encourage more sales.
Invest in a CMS tool
Content management systems tools are invaluable for businesses that have a lot of quality content and want to get it outright. They can be used to create, store, manage, and schedule content across multiple platforms and make the lives of many marketers easier.
Content Marketing Tools
Whether you are new to content marketing or a pro, a helping hand can come in many forms. Many marketers use content marketing tools to support their work, from production to management and you can too. Here are ten tools to make content marketing easier, efficient, and effective.
Extra storage, team collaboration, and a world of tools at your disposal, GSuite is a great tool for an organization as well as the aforementioned. GSuite is available to users who have a regular Gmail account and those who have a business account. Google Drive can supply you with space to store content from text to videos and is accessible to anyone in your organization and whoever you wish to give access to.
There is nothing worse than realizing after the fact that you’ve published content that is riddled with spelling and grammatical errors. That’s why marketers use Grammarly. By allowing you to set parameters (audience, tone, formality, and intent), this tool makes sure your work is fit for purpose. On a basic level, Grammarly is great for checking spelling and grammatical errors and conciseness. Users can choose between a free and premium version which unlocks more features such as readability, vocabulary enhancement suggestions, genre-specific writing style checks, and a very useful plagiarism detection tool. What’s more, Grammarly can be integrated into your web browser, allowing you to get your messaging right across multiple platforms.
This well-known email marketing tool is loved by markers and business owners alike and is used by all types of businesses. Their MO allows users to create custom lists with segmenting and create campaigns based on behavioral targeting. Mailchimp now offers more than your regular email campaigns, users can also take advantage of their social media tools or even create your own landing page. Build your own fresh content in their content studio, so you have your content and campaigns all under one roof. Mailchimp is fast becoming a one-stop-shop for all your content marketing needs and is worth the investment. Their pricing structures really offer something for everyone, starting with a free subscription and offering three different paid subscription levels, each offering more or less depending on your needs and priced accordingly.
Content marketing and management platform, Hootsuite is every social media marketer’s best friend.
- Scheduling – Keep your content consistent and your social media up to date by scheduling your posts ahead of time.
- Content curation – Create your own content for social media and more.
- Promote content – Get your content in front of more people by using Hootsuite’s promotion tools.
- Analytics – Keep track of your content’s performance.
- Monitoring – Keep up to date with the hottest topics right now, so you can create content around what’s currently trending.
- Team management – Assignment and workflow tools to maximize productivity, communication, and collaboration
- Security – Keep your social media accounts safe and monitor who has access to what accounts.
- App-Integration – A whole host of apps that can be integrated with your Hootsuite account, including Google My Business, Zendesk, Asana, and many more.
Although Hootsuite mostly promotes their paid subscriptions, users with small budgets can take advantage of their free version with limited features.
There is no platform in the world bigger for blogging than WordPress. Creating your own blog could not be easier with the WordPress.com version or you can use WordPress’s open-source platform that allows users to create websites using templates and code. WordPress prides itself on being a platform that anybody can use and customize easily. Users can benefit from hundreds of widgets and app integrations. While it is free to use, users can upgrade their free wordpress.com plan anytime to a paid subscription which allows them to connect to a custom domain, these prices vary depending on the subscription level they choose.
Collaborative tools like Slack help teams come together easier to create better workflows when it comes to projects and campaigns. When it comes to content marketing, these tools can make that job much easier with easy file sharing, organized conversations, and connected apps like Google Drive, Zoom, and Salesforce. Slack is free to use but offers three levels of paid subscriptions starting from Standard to Enterprise and priced according to what you need.
If Photoshop is too advanced or out of your budget, Canva is the best alternative for creating content. Where you need to design from scratch on Photoshop, Canva offers an extensive library of templates for a wide range of uses including, platform-specific social media posts, infographics, eBook covers; logos, and much more. Each template is customizable, allowing you to change colors, backgrounds, and icons to make your own graphics. Everything you create is saved in your own library and can be exported to JPEG, PNG, or PDF. Canva is free to use but does have some premium features, including usage of premium templates and images, creating graphics and logos with transparent backgrounds, and a personal Brand Kit.
HubSpot is the platform that has it all, marketing, sales, service, and websites. Businesses can easily take their business to HubSpot and never need to go anywhere else. For content marketing, users love HubSpot for their CRM tools, including content management and email marketing. On top of everything else, HubSpot offers a wealth of learning tools, blogs, and courses that allow users to enhance their skills. You can get started with HubSpot for free but features are quite limited. Subscriptions are priced according to the features set out across three levels and may seem pricey, however, many customers say that they are worth the investment.
Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator
Adobe is the king of graphic creation. While many shudder at the thought of using Photoshop, it is a desirable skill and when it comes to design work, the sky is your limit with an extensive library of fonts and tools at your disposal. Not only can you create with photoshop but you can edit existing graphics and images. The Adobe Creative Cloud saves and stores all your work so you don’t need to worry about buying extra storage and there is a wealth of tutorial videos and helpful articles to get you on your way to becoming a Photoshop or Illustrator master. The largest downside of Adobe products is cost, there is no free option to use Photoshop but can you try before you buy it for seven days.
Besides Hootsuite is Buffer, another much loved social media management tool. Buffer has two main features, Publish and Analyze. Publish allows you to plan, collaborate and schedule social media posts. Analyze allows users to keep track of their social media performance. If your main platform is Instagram, Buffer is the software for you. With their direct scheduling to Instagram, first comment under post, grid shop management and post reminders features, your Instagram will be transformed. Buffer is currently working on an engagement tool for Instagram users which will allow you to directly engage with your followers from Buffer, so you can be present and build brand trust with your followers.
Content marketing has been transforming the way businesses approach their marketing campaigns, by attracting new and existing customers with high-quality content that can allow you to reach your target audience in a way that is organically driven and maximizes your conversion rates. While you want to create enriching content, don’t be afraid to experiment and find out what your customers respond to.
Are you new to content marketing, what are you excited about trying out?