Content marketing has taken on greater importance in 2020 for many brands. If you have been wondering whether to start an affordable campaign this summer, here are eight reasons why you need to take a leap of faith and start investing more in content.
Google loves content
Google is the place to be. It is where consumers will search for brands, products and services. Basically, any online journey typically starts with a search query, and Google is the biggest search engine out there.
Google also happens to love high-quality content and will reward you with higher placements in rankings if you can publish relevant and targeted materials on a regular basis. This priceless visibility in search will lead to a great deal of traffic to your website, which will make it easier for you to push hot prospects further along the buying cycle.
Content drives sales
Content can get people to click through to your webpages and can then be used again to support them through the final phases of the marketing funnel. Customers generally consume several pieces of content or more before they commit to buying something, so be prepared to play the long game with targeted articles, blogs and emails.
Content should always feed into this journey, whether it’s published on social media or a company blog. It can bring new customers a step closer to checking out and at the same time, build relationships and strengthen loyalty with a target audience that has already done business with you in the past.
Content delivers better ROI
Consumers are not very receptive to ‘cold’ sales outreach where brands attempt to push their offerings to those who are not even on the lookout for their services. This form of marketing is almost always destined to fail in the long term as it is difficult to truly deliver any meaningful return on investment (ROI).
Content marketing works by actually targeting and engaging with people who are searching for your products. If you have identified an audience in the awareness phase, you can be sure that your content will offer some sort of value to them and enable them to take the next step in their respective journeys.
Rather than trying to force a customer to buy something, content works by being there as and when a customer needs it. They will see an article or a blog as a valuable resource that has solved some sort of problem and pain point. This is much better than focusing on a bombardment of emails or texts that offer them very little and can actively make them annoyed and frustrated.
Content controls the conversation
Consumers will always educate themselves in some way, but wouldn’t it be better if you were the brand that they leaned on for industry insights and product information? Content not only lets you get into the conversation, but it can also allow you to control it and at the expense of competitors that may have beaten you to the punch if you had not published a series of excellent blogs.
Audiences are more receptive to content
Performance marketing has taken a back seat since the pandemic due to budget restraints, but this is probably a good thing for brands. A new study by Forrester has found that sales teams struggle to make sales if customers have been touched “too aggressively and too frequently”.
Proof Analytics CEO Mark Stouse adds: “In rocky times, everyone is looking for anything that removes friction and risk from the equation. Those concerns are addressed by brand – awareness, confidence, trust – not by how many emails or texts you can pump out every hour to people who may or may not want to receive them.”
Content marketing meets consumers in a place where they feel comfortable and are ready to move forward with a purchase. This also helps to build better relationships as audiences feel like they have got something positive from their interaction with you, which is great for retention and loyalty further down the line.
Content amplifies brand awareness
Optimising your content and web copy for SEO means that you will start ranking in search results for terms and keywords related to your business. If you are a forex or stock broker publishing a high-quality article about how to make your first investments, you could potentially put that content in front of thousands of people who are searching for investment ideas and assistance every month.
This sort of visibility can really transform sales and general business results. Content enables you to build around keywords and topics that you feel passionately about and are closely aligned with your business, which allows you to reach people who are actively looking for advice and information for the very same thing. You can rank for hundreds of keywords, so visibility is amplified further when you publish content over time.
Content is great for thought leaders
Cold outreach does little for your brand credibility. In fact, it could actually harm it. Content gives you a platform to become a thought leader. You can publish white papers, eBooks, infographics or videos that explore issues in your industry.
Shedding a light on these subjects and providing actionable advice will lead to audiences viewing you as a credible source for things they want to know. This pays off in a number of ways, not least in the potential for more sales and positive word of mouth as customers share your content.
Content helps other departments
It’s easy to view content as a purely marketing-based pursuit. However, it can also make life easier for your customer service and sales teams. Customer service may become frustrated at having to respond to common queries every day. An informative blog series can round up all of these FAQs, so that your customers have the answers they need immediately. This also works for common sales queries.
These are just some of the immediate benefits that content marketing offers. What’s great is that they are not isolated to a single day or month. This is why content is one of the best long-term marketing investments.