Content Marketing for Dummies: Why You Need a Good Partner in Crime

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Content marketing is the new gold standard for any digital marketing campaign for your business. At the same time, you can’t be expected to be an expert on all the vagaries of content marketing while also running a business of your own — let’s be honest, there’s just not enough hours in the day for that!

There’s good news on this front, though. No matter what type of business you run, whether you’re in the service economy, the professional sector, or even industrial or manufacturing, you can still reap the rewards of content marketing when it comes to building your company brand. And you don’t have to accomplish this through sweating through learning these marketing concepts yourself — you just need a good partner to help you along the way.

A History of Digital Marketing

Before we discuss just how to go about finding the best partner for your content marketing needs, it’s important to know just what “content marketing” actually is. Boiled down to its essentials, content marketing is a specific subset of digital marketing — otherwise known as any type of marketing activity that doesn’t involve traditional advertising strategies and tactics.

Digital marketing has taken many forms over the years. At first, digital marketing techniques were virtually indistinguishable from traditional ones, as marketers began using the lessons learned in creating print and other media ads and applying them to the internet, leading to banner ads on web pages, pay-per-click marketing, and eventually search engine optimization.

Google Analytics Chart

How Digital Marketing Gave Way to Content Marketing

Yet as connectivity spread across the globe, digital marketing changed. With the rise of smart devices and social media, digital marketing began to diverge from its traditional roots and instead embraced a new, better, more authentic way: using digital tools to provide content that went above and beyond exhorting consumers to buy products and services. Thus, content marketing was born — and it’s all about adding value to the lives of consumers without directly selling to them.

What does content marketing look like? It can take a number of different forms. You can produce infographics or write blog posts and host them on custom-designed websites. You can upload videos to YouTube. Even sharing memes on social media can be content marketing if it connects with your audience in a way that positively affects your brand. The goal is to raise awareness of your company and what it offers consumers without using traditional advertising tactics, and in order to excel at such an endeavor, you need specialized knowledge on what works and what doesn’t.

You’re Not Like Other Brands

Your company is unique. Your digital marketing content should be as well. Relying on advertising methods that skew towards the traditional don’t work in digital spaces. There’s a vague inauthenticity to older advertising methods. You’re not selling fruit on the corner — there’s no need to shout louder than everyone else around you. Consumers are tired of such methods, and it’s been borne out by research on the subject. In fact, traditional advertising and marketing techniques tend to generate lots of cynicism and suspicion on the part of consumers today.

That’s why content marketing has become so preferable. When you show your consumer that you’re not just a faceless business trying to sell them as many products or services as possible but instead that you’re a company that stands behind their goods and believes those goods can make a positive difference in their lives, this can evaporate that cynicism and suspicion. Content marketing shows consumers that you’re not like those other brands and that you honestly, authentically care about more than just their money.

Under the Hood: Digital Marketing Statistics

You need to market your company on the internet — there’s no question there. You also need to use content marketing in order to do so, especially since lead generation through content marketing is three times more effective than older methods like pay per click ads. While anyone can share content to social media in an event to use content-based marketing techniques, it takes a deeper understanding of those techniques to transform a company social media account into something that increases brand awareness and drives engagement in the authentic and transparent ways that today’s consumers prefer.

Business owners don’t necessarily have that knowledge. Sure, you might know that social media is a massive juggernaut when it comes to digital marketing, but just how big is big? Well, more than two-thirds of all Americans — 68 percent to be exact — are on Facebook according to the Pew Research Center, for example. Numbers for YouTube are even higher, with 72 percent of Americans — nearly three out of every four — being engaged on the platform.

Why You Need That Expert Help

The data is clear: if you’re a business owner and you want to use digital marketing to grow your brand, the next marketing campaign you undergo should most certainly be content-based. Doing otherwise is just not going to be effective, especially since the consumers of today don’t appreciate businesses who stick to old school pre-internet methods.

But how are you supposed to put together a digital marketing campaign that’s going to be effective in that way? You don’t have the time or to educate yourself on all the different content marketing techniques that are out there — you’re too busy running your company! On top of that, if you’re a smaller business or a startup you likely don’t have the resources to onboard a dedicated marketing expert. The answer, once again, is finding an outside partner that you can rely on to provide you with the marketing materials you need for success.

Finding the Perfect Partner

Content marketing requires you to produce content. You’ll need a partner with experience in producing content, such as one that specializes in blogging services, as they can show you how they can provide customized content for your company that will tell your story in ways that will engage with consumers. You can then begin sharing this content on your company site and across social media, or you can enlist the aid of your content creation partners to run a digital content campaign for you.

In the end, the amount of outside help you enlist is up to you. Prices, rates, and level of quality will vary depending on who you partner with and how dedicated your partner is to fulfilling your needs. You may not find guaranteed success — even the most well-researched marketing campaign with the most potential can end up a dud sometimes — but building a relationship with a content creation partner will supercharge the chances of success for your business.