The history of content marketing dates back to the time soapies started, and that was Proctor and Gamble. Each episode while entertaining sought to put across what Proctor and Gamble soap was about. That worked, as they were able to tell their story, and determined what people generally thought of the company and it’s products. I’ll like to underscore that this was more thorough and much of an investment than an expense in that it basically gave P&G an opportunity to give people what they needed in a unique way, at a very little cost – the entertainment, and the promotion was hidden in a way that respected the audience. Better, as a result of it’s perceived brilliance, it garnered massive engagement that as a result earned the organisation great authority over then existent and ever coming competitors. The power of content marketing
Tell your story, set the narrative.
Through articles, videos, pictures, podcasts you create and upload regularly for your audience to feed on, you’re telling a story of who you are. Better than you could by just distributing fliers, posters, business cards, jingles and commercials. Here, you control how people perceive you.
Build your brand – position it
I once got a client who literally told me what to post on their platforms, when and how.
Worse, at some point I noticed another client had my contact saved in his phone with my name and ‘adverts’ as if I am about adverts.
What both of these had in common very much was that they all had wrong expectations of me. They looked for, they paid for a different service altogether from what I was offering. That’s frustrating.
What do you take home from this?
Through your content you’re working to make it easy for people who interact with you to know what to expect from you. You’re letting them in on, what exactly you do and don’t do, and with what intensity. The objective should be that each of them knows and understands that, with every fiber of their being.
Ultimately you need to push this content through as many portals as possible. From my understanding, product position adds value and while it does nothing to the physical product or actual service, it adds quality to the product. How? Because, customers get more than what they should naturally expect.
Best done, content marketing, has been the reason for the marked differences in prices between competing firms. Firm X and Y produce the same product, but firm X can afford to offer it at $6/unit and record good revenues where as firm Y can’t afford to go above $3 and still make profit or keep surviving. Content marketing helps firms to position their brands and products in the minds of their customers and potential so that firms can charge higher and fair prices, reduce unnecessary wastage in returns of products and refunds, or lawsuits.
Turn customers to loyal customers.
Have you noticed that the more you get loyal customers, the less you need to spend on adverts and promotions. Because, naturally your existing now loyal customers get to promote your product for you, and advocate for it, and they guarantee you high sales volumes, and revenue.
Well, I knew you already knew that, I just had to bring it back here. I wanted you to hear it again.
Content marketing is a good means to that. Loyalty, like everything else in any form of relationship is created and bred with, among other things, communication and knowledge of one another. The more you interact with your audience, the more you know them. That means, the more you’re likely to offer them what they really require. The more you push your content to your audience and customers, the more they’ll know you and fact check. With that you build trust, and eventually it is easy for them to be loyal to your business. Look at brands like DHL, Virgin Group of Companies, LinkedIn, EMyth among others.
Leverage your promotion, multiplier effort.
Well, once you have a loyal clientele, you’ll notice what was once achievable with a $200 promotional budget, now can even be achieved by a $40 budget or none really.
High awareness, more interest.
There’s a little thing called customer journey. Ever heard of it?
What about sales funnel?
I hope you have heard of these. They’re a reality in business. Acknowledging their existence and value can save one loads of energy and dollars when it comes to the whole marketing effort.
At first first interaction between your potential customer and your business, you’re usually something that’s insignificant and not very important. They’re just aware of your existence, and while that is great, it is not the ultimate goal of your effort. They have to buy, and again, and advocate for your brand and products.
How do you do that?
There comes a time when a good fraction of the people that are aware of your existence will want know more – your content will do that for you, when they search and look for more stuff. And this is important especially for millennials and gen Zs who basically prefer researching for themselves, usually online, then proofing through their family, friends and people they look up to, influencers, before they buy and commit to your product. Content marketing is king.
Accessibility, rank higher on search engines, more reach and authority.
Talk of people growing interest in your business after first interaction, be it having heard of you from their friends, a recommendation, a flier, poster or posts, Tweet, video. When they now want to know more, millennials and gen Zs will look for you. The better you are at content the more discoverable you are, and the higher the chances for you to convince them to get on the wagon that’s your business. You’re accessible – they can find you, and you need that.
How many of you, after searching for something on the internet, can go for the second, third or fourth page? Rarely do people go to the next page. I mean, they don’t even scroll much down the results page, how much more other pages. Now, the more optimised content one pushes on their site, the more likely they are to rank higher when the keywords, words that relate to what they have to offer and more are used – more accessibility, more reach.
Entrepreneur publishes more than 1 million in words of content every week. And, guess what? You can rarely type ‘entrepreneur’, ‘start-up’, ‘venture capital’, ‘partner’ among other relative keywords and not find them. Better than that, having read their material, watched their videos along with their competitors, you can find they literally have reputable information on so many subjects when it comes to entrepreneurship – authority, and accessibility.
Start conversations, engage the customers and potentials.
“Young people are misunderstood!” – says almost every young person. But now they don’t stop at that, they just make you pay for it, and dearly at that. Look, unlike other generations past, the two generations who are making up the majority of consumers today – millenials and generation Zs – are not and can’t afford to be faceless. They need an opportunity to be heard and express themselves.
Organisations that are providing that, are selling more, many times more than those who are not. Some have gone beyond giving their audience and clientele the comment section and the email address, but they have groups on social media where the public can see their praise and criticism – raw, imperfect, and human. Others, even further, have customers contributing content on their in the form of articles, videos, pictures, memes and infographics. People, given this kind of environment will do better than buy regularly, but refer more people, and advocate for your business. Switching your customers to clients, clients to partners.
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