Give the people useful information to build your profile.
What is content marketing and a content strategy?
It’s about driving customer action.
Let’s say you own a biscuit company. You run TV commercials on shows that grocery shoppers in the household are likely watching, you throw up some billboards close to grocery stores. You run radio spots at the times people are stopping by the store on the way home. Your business is good, but you want to connect with your people more than 15 and 30-second spots or an 8 second view time on a billboard.
Let’s throw together an abridged content marketing plan together right now on this page. Before we get started, this type of marketing has been around for hundreds of years. It’s not new. Technology has just made it so much more exciting.
You have these biscuits, and you want to connect with the people where they’ll use them more in their meal plans. Why not show them how to use them? What can we do?
Let’s build a recipe section on our website and use all of our traditional marketing we’re already using to promote it. Let’s produce short videos of professional chefs using our biscuits in easy family meals where someone can follow along in the kitchen. Let’s use our social media channels to ask the public how they use the biscuits in their cooking. Produce a short video that shows the American farms and farmers that produce the ingredients used in your product. Start a newsletter that takes everything mentioned previously and shares it weekly or monthly.
What are some types of "content marketing" businesses use?
Anything you place under the umbrella of your brand can be “content marketing.” Still, generally speaking, it will fall into one of these categories:
General details about your business from your “About” page to your services pages.
Timely updates about happenings and news within your industry and your business.
Videos produced to introduce your business to the public, introduce members of your business, cover topics within your industry or answer common questions that prospective customers and clients may ask.
Taking information and making it easily digestible through graphic design. Infographics are used to offer insights into your industry or business or answer questions.
Showing how you have helped clients in the past with their problems. A simple example of this would be a financial entity sharing how they were able to bolster a client’s portfolio by smart investing. A case study can also be “before and after” pictures.
For those who want to dive a little deeper, you can offer long-form reading filled with info and stats. Many times, whitepapers are utilized to capture lead information through download. They also educate and, most importantly, express your authority on the subject matter to prospective clients or customers.
Using audio to show that you know the subject matter and tackle questions and problems, your prospective customers and clients may be facing now or down the road. For a full rundown, check out our Podcast Production page.
People are social animals. Hearing from people just like them who have used your services or product may give them the incentive needed to give you a call or fill out a contact form. These can be both written as online content or via video.
So you don't make a product. You offer a service. What can you do?
Produce videos of you answering common questions from clients. Write a book about a specific practice area and offer it for free to anyone who wants it. Build webpages that show how you’ve helped clients with a long-form telling of their and your story. Include videos of the clients talking about what you did for them. Produce a newsletter that shares news about your firm. Nope nothing about law, just what is happening with the people at your firm. People love stories. Speaking of stories, produce a podcast that shares some of your favorite and most satisfying cases.
We could go all day with ideas, but we get paid to come up with these, so we have to stop giving it away for free.
Ultimately, you’re producing content that connects you with your client or customer or protentional client or customer.
How will content marketing and content strategy help my business?
Let’s say you have a beautiful dog. You take her to two different vets in your town that you sourced from digital advertisements when searching for a local vet:
Vet 1: “Your dog looks great, we’ll see you next time, Samantha send in the next pooch!”
Vet 2: “Your dog looks great. Here’s a book I wrote on the best practices in raising your dog with a list of exercise and feeding recommendations. It’s yours for free. Also, here is a card with my YouTube page on it and my emergency number. I have 20 videos on there on what to do in the case of an emergency with a dog and simple ways you can check and see if he needs medical attention. Please call me at any time of the day if you suspect anything. Follow me on Twitter too. Your dog is going to be Dog of the Day on Wednesday!”
Given that both vets charge around the same price, which one is making a better impression?
It’s all about connecting and going beyond the 15 or 30-second canned elevator speech or the three lines of text Google Search Ad. It’s about creating a relationship where customer feels comfortable with you.