Content marketing is the best way to let your target audience know who you are, how your products and services can benefit them, and to encourage them to buy from you. So content marketing is essential to online success – just like the heart is essential to the functioning of the body.
Content is king – or rather, quality content is king – as it drives all online interaction. Much like your heart powers your body, engaging content is the cornerstone of everything that happens online. Let’s take a closer look.
Heart → Brain = Content serves thought leadership
Every business wants to be seen as the leader in its industry and one of the best ways to differentiate your SME from competitors is through content-driven thought leadership. Depending on your business and sector, you can use blogs, whitepapers, case studies, guides, infographics and ebooks, to name but a few, to offer valuable content to your audience and showcase your expertise.
Heart → Eyes = Content improves visibility
Publishing quality content will get you noticed. HubSpot research shows companies that blog typically get 55% more visitors than non-blogging competitors. This might have something to do with the fact that such sites get 97% more inbound links than others, which is also beneficial for their performance in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Heart → Mouth = Content boosts word-of-mouth recommendations
A growing proportion of consumers are heading online to spread the word about brands they have dealings with. This is a significant development for small businesses, considering McKinsey Quarterly found up to half of all buying decisions are driven by a word-of-mouth recommendation.
Heart → Arms = Content gives you a wider (and stronger) reach
Sites that feature regular blog posts have on average 434% more indexed pages and 97% more indexed links than other websites. This means such sites are likely to rank higher in SERPs and appear more credible as a result, but it also means they offer their audience more resources and more convincing reasons for choosing them over a competitor.
Heart → Hands = More work leads to more money
Marketers cite search engine optimised custom content as the top source of leads and successful social media campaigns with quality content at its core are cited by three-quarters of marketers as a factor in closing sales.
The logic is simple: The more leads that are converted, the more work there is to do and the more money a business will make. And it doesn’t stop there – Roper research found the majority of existing customers are persuaded to purchase another product from the same company if they are provided with custom content.
Heart → Legs = Content does the marketing legwork for you
Anyone who suggests online marketing is easy because “anyone can publish stuff on the internet”, is probably doing it wrong. Because even though joining social networks is generally free, keeping all the channels updated requires an investment of time, resources and effort. It’s not easy constantly coming up with ideas for quality content that will engage readers and compel them to buy or share information, but publishing such content regularly is an investment worth making.
Nearly two-thirds of companies who use social media to promote their products and services said doing so has increased the effectiveness of their marketing activities.
Heart → Feet – Content gives your online marketing a solid footing
Billions of pieces of content are shared online every day. In order to compete successfully online, you’re going to have to do something that is more than just run of the mill.
Publishing unique content that is tailored to your intended audience is the best way of doing this. The majority of consumers say they’d much rather get to know a brand through reading articles they publish than checking out advertisements about them. And 60% of consumers said they felt more positive about a brand after reading custom content on their site.