As you leave 2016 behind and head into 2017, now is the time to start working out your content marketing strategy and building momentum to carry your business into 2017.
Your marketing strategy, and especially your online strategy, is all about content. Content is how you share your world with your customers. It’s how you engage with them. It’s how you grab their attention and hook them into your company, your products, your services and your culture. And it’s how you convince them to buy from you rather than from your competitors.
Content is what makes all of that happen, whether it’s in written form like in-depth articles and blog posts, whitepapers and press releases or in a visual format like photos, infographics and videos. Evergreen content of all sizes, shapes and forms is integral to growing your business in 2017, and there are many benefits to putting a smart content marketing strategy in place.
Below, we’ll discuss what effective content marketing is, what it is not and how it can benefit your business in 2017.
Content Establishes You As An Authority In Your Industry
The starting point of sales and marketing is the concept that customers tend to buy from people and brands that they know, like and trust. In today’s digital marketplace, online content is the channel through which many of your current and future customers will come to know, like and trust you. That’s why it’s so important for your company to put real effort into building out a content strategy for 2017 that will get people’s attention and help to establish you as an authority and your brand as the product leader in your particular industry.
Don’t be afraid to share knowledge with your readers. Don’t be afraid to give them free content that solves their problems. By doing so, you’ll secure your place in their minds as an authority and as a brand that cares and tries to help people. You’ll earn their trust, and when the time comes, you’ll earn their business too!
Content Brings Targeted Traffic To Your Website
There was a time when companies could get some decent traffic just by putting up a website with a few pages of basic info, some self-serving advertisements, a services page and a contact page. But those days are long gone. Your business website needs a blog with posts that do more than just toot your own horn, and that blog needs to be updated regularly with fresh content that offers real value to your audience. If all your content does it describe your products and services, then you’re probably missing out on a lot of potential leads and future sales.
Not everyone who comes to your website is ready to make a purchase right away, and that’s okay. That’s how business works today. You don’t just push people to buy. Sure, you need to have content that makes it easy for those who know what they want and are ready to make a purchase, but you also need to have content for those who are not that far along in the sales process yet.
Some visitors are curious about the products you offer. Many are just looking for information at this moment – and nothing more. Give it to them. If your content is helping people without trying to force them into a purchase, they’ll appreciate that. And there’s a good chance that many of them will be back at a later date.
Make sure to create and publish helpful content on a regular basis. Every piece of content that you produce is like another fishing line in the water, and the more lines you have out there, the more bites you’re going to get.
But not all content will get you results. Some content is timely and will only be relevant for a short time, and that’s okay. Things like events, announcements, product releases and updates come to mind. Your readers will want to know about those things, so be sure to share them on your blog and social accounts.
Most of your content, however, should be evergreen. Evergreen content is information that has staying power. It’s information that won’t soon go out of date, and because of this it will have the potential to attract traffic to your site for many months and perhaps even years to come. That’s a powerful investment!
Content Creates Customers
We hinted at this above, but it deserves more discussion.
Many people who come to your website will have no idea who you are or what you sell, and that’s okay. They’re just looking for information, and since your content strategy has you publishing well-written, keyword-optimized content on your site on a steady basis, the search engines have taken notice and have brought these people to you.
They want information, and if they like the information that your site gives them, they may come back to learn more later on. That is how you establish a connection with your readers and turn random visitors into sales leads.
Selling is a process – a sometimes lengthy and ongoing process – so make sure that your marketing strategy takes into account the variety of people who will come to your site this year, that it respects their position in the sales journey and that it will take them by the hand and lead them into a deeper relationship with your brand.
Content Connects You With Your Customer Base
The Internet has forever changed the way we do business.
It’s not enough to just hire an ad agency to create television and radio commercials, billboards and magazine ads. That’s certainly still necessary and effective for major brands with large budgets. But for most companies, the game has changed. You can’t just shove ads down people’s throats and expect them to buy what you’re selling.
Relationships are king in today’s marketplace. People don’t just want to know about your products, they want to know about you, your team, your history and your culture. When they come to your social media pages, they expect someone on the other end to respond to their comments and questions. They expect a social element to your business, so go ahead and engage with them.
That’s where your content comes in.
Does your content invite conversations? Does it take visitors by the hand and bring them into your world? Is it inviting? Is it transparent? Is it authentic? These are questions we here at Create the Movement take seriously as we plan the year’s strategies and launch forward into 2017. Need some assistance? Give us a call at (918) 770-0211 or fill out our Contact form.