A Guide to Content Marketing
What is Content Marketing?
Obviously named, content marketing is a department of marketing that involves creating and distributing content online, whether on a website, social media page, or blog, among other avenues.
The type of content created for marketing purposes includes but is not limited to social media posts, graphics, newsletters, web banners, videos, blog articles, and email marketing campaigns.
The primary intent of any content marketing strategy is to attract consumers, retain them, and earn revenue so as to grow the bottom line. This is accomplished largely by stimulating emotion, generating interest, increasing engagement, promoting products and services, and building brand awareness.
For those of a more traditional mindset, you may be wondering how content on social media, for example, can be that valuable to a business. Moreover, you may beg the question ‘how can social media be so integral to the growth of a large corporation?!’.
After all, it’s just social media, right?! Wrong.
Is Content Marketing Effective?
The truth is, there has never been a more abundant opportunity for businesses, creators, and freelancers alike than there has been with social media.
Think about it. The average consumer spends 2 hours and 25 minutes per day on social media. Moreover, there are more than 2.4 billion daily users on Facebook alone! Lastly, from a business competition standpoint, almost 92% of businesses in the United States now use social media for marketing purposes.
That’s a lot of eyes, to say the least…
The best part? They all come at a fraction of what traditional marketing expenses cost (i.e. commercials, billboards, etc). Even more, the ROI of digital marketing in comparison to traditional marketing tactics? Not even comparable.
So, is content marketing effective? YES. Does it work? YES! Should you start using it? YES!!!
Important Content Marketing Skills
Now that we’ve come to a conclusive agreement that content marketing is of the utmost importance for businesses and creators alike, that begs the question, ‘how important are content marketing skills?’…
Nevertheless, content marketing is one of the most in-demand jobs in 2021, and it’s only growing. In addition, the skills and talent level of content marketers are only getting more competitive.
Below are the most common, desirable, and necessary content marketing skills and specialties of a Professional Content Marketer:
The power of words is undeniable, especially in a content marketing scenario. Not only are words used on promotional materials and website copy to convey a particular sale or solution of a product or service, but its also used in blogs, social media posts, and email newsletters, among other things.
Words are one of the more powerful ways to communicate in a digital space. In order for your business to remain atop the competition and continue to be trusted and respected, top-quality copywriting is a necessity.
Other avenues that a business can benefit from a talented copywriter are SEO, metadata, landing pages, and email marketing campaigns.
Similar to copywriting, editing is paramount to ensuring the quality of copy being distributed is error-free. A writer can be the best writer in the world but still has the ability to make a mistake. It’s called human error.
Nevertheless, if you hire the right copywriter, they’ll likely have the editing capabilities to cover both tasks simultaneously.
Search Engine Optimization
SEO is a newer tool not previously utilized in traditional marketing. As such, it’s important to find a content marketer with a certain level of competency, most preferably with SEO tools.
Not only will this save your business time and money, but it will also allow the best of your content to get recognized by more eyes via search engines and rankings. Technical know-how is crucial when it comes to digital marketing.
Hiring a content marketer with the skills of curating and distributing content, as well as encompassing the digital know-how of back-end terminology and integration, now that’s a solid hire.
Marketing & Campaign Strategy
The best content marketers aren’t just those with a creative knack for content curation. Instead, they also have the innate ability to understand the customer journey and ideate a campaign that encompasses every step of the process, from ideation, creation, and execution on all mediums (social media strategy and implementation, email marketing, web optimization, etc.).
Lastly, a good content marketer doesn’t only execute distribution. Instead, they ideate, create, AND distribute. A content marketer with creative skills like videography, photography, and graphic design is a content marketer above the rest.
If you’re looking to hire someone, whether in-house or freelance, to provide you with content marketing efforts, it’s important that you look for those with as many of the skills above as you can.
The most common roles you’ll likely find said skills include: Digital Marketing Manager, Social Media Manager, Campaign Manager, Writer/Editor, Creative Director, and Content Creator.
The Value of Content Marketing for Businesses
Content marketing is valuable to a business because it allows them to communicate with its target audience. As mentioned in the preface of this article, it also allows them to build trust, earn credibility, and build brand awareness. Lastly, it allows them to capture the attention of potential customers in the era of the shortest attention spans ever!
As for the quality of content distributed, because the competition has become so high level, consumers expect and accept only the highest quality of content from whom they follow. In short, content is arguably a form of currency in today’s digital era; a bold statement, but true nonetheless.
So, now that you’ve gained a better understanding of what content marketing is, why it’s so important, and how it works, it’s time for you to put what you’ve learned into action! Good luck!