Every time we see these words from a client “Have we started advertising the next course?” we can’t help but cringe. While we understand they mean executing on the content strategy, it means something completely different.
We’re content marketers and strategists, not paid ad marketers. And while we work holistically with various marketing teams or specialists, advertising or paid ads are a whole different approach. Content marketing can definitely fit into your overall marketing strategy but let’s pause…that’s another conversation for another day.
Today, let’s just focus on, what is content marketing?
So, why does hearing the word advertising make us question whether we’re educating our clients or bringing them up to speed with what exactly we’re doing?
To start, content marketing isn’t pitching, selling, or paid advertisement. Content marketing is actually, in a way, the complete opposite of what you think marketing is. What we’ve noticed is that sometimes that concept is so simple but business owners can make it more complicated than it is.
In nutshell, it’s a type of marketing strategy that builds a community or network around your brand by providing interest, value, and education.
It empowers your audience with information (aka content) that may have nothing to do about you or your business but relates to your mission and values. This may even mean that you amplify other businesses’ content (think reposting or linking resources in an email or putting other products in your blog) — there are so many creative strategies to tie back to your content, these are merely examples.
Does content marketing work?
If done correctly, your content marketing strategy creates trust with your ideal client.
Remember, marketing is a relationship.
As you build this relationship by providing really valuable content, they’ll see you as a partner, like a friend, that they can turn to. They’ll start to understand that your business is invested in their well-being and success.
Data also supports this: Marketers who blog generate 67% more leads than marketers who don’t. 47% of people view at least 3–5 pieces of content before they reach out and contact your business or sales rep. 73% of business-to-business companies are publishing case studies as their content for their blog. And lastly, because blogging has such little overhead costs, marketers are 13x more likely to see positive ROI because you’re not spending money on paid ads.
But content marketing will flop if there are other holes in your business.
For example, if you don’t have a great customer or client support process, all the leads you generated won’t matter.
So really think that process through, are your expectations for your marketing team too high? Are you expecting them to generate more leads, more sales, and also keep revenue and customers high?
It’s not as simple as just creating content
While you can definitely create all types of content, we encourage our clients and you too to have a balance between what you want to create intuitively versus what you’re creating based on your goals and plan (aka strategy).
For example, if your goal is to increase organic website visitors then your content strategy should focus on creating high-quality search-engine-optimization (SEO) blogs.
But there may be some topics that you really want to write about that may not be “SEO friendly.” Write it! Just strike the balance between your goal and what feels intuitive to you.
Of course, there is some pre-work or pre-knowledge like:
- Who your audience is
- What do they feel and need
- Where do they spend their time viewing or looking at content (i.e. marketing channels)
- Do you have keywords or an SEO best-practices in mind?
How can you get started?
We would say start with a really great website — well-written copy and a well structured website will do wonders for you and potential clients.
Secondly, meet the customer or client’s mindset. As you’re creating valuable content that isn’t necessarily tied to your services or products, ask yourself or your team “where, when and how will your potential customer learn that they might have a need for what you do.”
The best marketing is
What are examples of content marketing for conscious business?
This can be writing blog posts, creating a YouTube video, recording a podcast, your newsletters, and even down to any educational resources you provide to your clients. Content can even be classes you create such a yoga classes or meditation recordings. We recommend to start with one channel, especially in the beginning, and really get familiar with it until you venture out on another.