Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as, “a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience—with the objective of driving profitable customer action.” In layman’s terms, content marketing is a means of providing captive information and media that specifically interests your company’s target audience. In order to use content marketing effectively, you need to investigate your target audience’s likes, interests, activities, behaviors and what they consider valuable information and/or entertainment. This act of profiling your target audience’s behavior, rather then just their demographics, is referred to as defining the ‘Buyer Persona.’
Content marketing is not focused on selling, but communicating with customers and prospects. The idea is to inspire business and loyalty from buyers by delivering consistent, ongoing valuable information. This way content marketing inherits a ‘soft-sell’ approach to advertising your business. Your content should be void of any obviously self-serving, pushy ad copy, and full of great relevant news, videos, white papers, e-books, infographics, case studies, how-to guides, question and answer articles, photos and similar materials available on your company’s blog, email campaigns, published materials, and website. In essence, your company’s online marketing campaigns become a valuable resource for your target audience, which translates to more page views and better conversion.
The ‘New SEO’ targets this kind of content marketing as its top priority for page ranking and validating authorship. Google’s complex algorithms can tell by popularity, low bounce rates, repeat views and other analytics how relevant and attractive your content is to your target audience and your business expertise. Please note that content marketing is only effective if you narrow your target to one specific audience. If you want to target different audiences and areas of expertise, then keep them on separate sections of your blog. The more targeted your content, the easier it is for Google to see what topic you are promoting and rank your site accordingly. Also, many bloggers and content writers have found that a personal touch, transparency, and sharing experiences have the most profound effect on target audiences. Give you customers and prospects something that makes them feel connected your company.
When working on your digital marketing strategy, don’t get caught up with hype, promises of the infamous PAGE 1 on Google. Boost your rankings and traffic to your site by focusing on engaging, interactive content, and reliable sources of information that are customized to the interests of your target audience and marketing that content through various online avenues.