Throughout the ages, different approaches to marketing services and products have evolved and changed.
The businesses with the best understanding of marketing and current trends are the ones who are the most successful. In the recent past, traditional marketing has been among the most effective ways of promoting a product, but now with consumers more savvy to marketing techniques, marketing is once again evolving into something known as content marketing.
What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing does not directly promote a product or service.
It is more low key and designed to educate the prospect long before any sales messages are sent. It does not pitch the product, but it delivers highly relevant information aimed at helping the customer understand an issue.
Content marketing continues to do so to build up the customer’s knowledge so that they make the connection and realize that to solve their particular problem, they need to purchase s product or service.
- Content marketing starts with education
- Content marketing provides true value to prospects
- Content marketing establishes trust
- Content marketing slowly transitions to offering products and services
It is a very clever technique that allows for greater chance of keeping the customer’s attention to the content written, while also building up more trust and ultimately brand loyalty.
The aim is to continually engage and communicate with prospects, providing education and information, and over a period of time they eventually reward the business when they purchase a product or service.
The content is written in such a way as to persuade the customer to take action and use the business.
People are more intelligent now, they know when a business is directly marketing to them, and they are no so taken in with the hype that is so often pushed onto them.
In essence, traditional marketing has become like spam; no one is interested in hearing it anymore.
Take for example, a recent advertising campaign created by an air conditioning company.
The campaign begins by stating that they are not going to say how wonderful they are, or that their service is the best. They invite the customer to view their website and read all the reviews that the company has, all positive and all negative.
Immediately, they are drawing these potential clients in for them to see for themselves.
The lines of communication have been opened and this business is trying to be as honest as possible.
This becomes the first part of trust.
Then, the client will look over other parts of the site and be further drawn into the highly relevant content, and educated.
Ultimately, enough trust will be built up for the client to make the transaction.
Even for small businesses, content marketing is a powerful technique to use.
Here are a few very simple tips you can immediately action, to help get your content marketing campaigns up and running.
Tone and Voice
Don’t be overly professional sounding. Keep things light and friendly, and your customers are likely to keep reading. Lose the jargon.
Focus on Providing Value not Products
Your customers don’t really care about your services and products. Therefore keeping the focus on helping them solve their problems, and the side effect of this should be they purchase your product to solve the issue.
Take your existing content and repackage it.
Create a slide show, a podcast, a blog post, or even a video.
Using different media on the same content creates greater outreach as every person responds differently to different message deliveries.
To conclude, content marketing is a way of communicating properly with your client base and educating them, rather than selling to them.
It’s the focus of providing them with plenty of information so they can make the decision and control how they combat it.
With this relationship between you and your customer, you are building up trust, and therefore brand loyalty so they stay with you.
Daniel Duckworth is the founder of Design Quotes, a marketplace for connecting small businesses with local web designers, graphic designers and online marketing experts. Daniel regularly writes about website marketing strategies at the Design Quotes Website Marketing Blog.