Marketing is transitioning from popups and adverts that interrupt the online user experience and send consumers into a downward spiral of frustration and irritation, to something that’s far more enjoyable and helpful: content marketing.
What are the benefits of content marketing?
- Improves online visibility,
- Enables a real connection with your target audience,
- Positions you as an expert in your field,
- Gives your brand credibility,
- Makes social proof easier,
- Drives more visibility to your product pages,
- Provides the ultimate convenience to your customers,
- Improves SEO opportunities & results.
The benefits of content marketing are difficult to overlook, because it’s so obviously valuable. Content marketing says goodbye to those annoying pop-ups and nagging adverts covering the screen and seeks to provide helpful, valuable, and entertaining content that you don’t have to bombard your target audience with – they will actually be looking for it and come to you!
The UK Office for National Statistics states that fewer stores are opening and an increasing number of stores are closing. And it’s all because the digital age (internet shopping) is upon us. That is true, but now there is pressure on online businesses to up their marketing game. Content marketing is proving to set some online stores leaps and bounds ahead of the rest, but how?
Think about it…when you are looking for a product, service or a solution to a problem, would you prefer to scour through piles of advertisements that don’t provide sufficient information to make a decision, or would you rather have a conversation with a friend who can provide helpful advice and some suggestions? Content marketing is the digital equivalent of the latter.
8 Benefits of Content Marketing in 2019
Consumers who are looking for more information and advice in sufficient quantity to answer their questions and make a decision will come to you. But this can only happen if your content marketing campaign is SEO optimised, so that your content appears in search engine results. Read on to learn more about the benefits of content marketing and how to make it work for you.
1. Content Marketing Improves Online Visibility.
Google is the online god that we are all trying to impress. If we get it right (adhere to the requirements of Google’s algorithms), Google rewards us with great exposure in search results. That’s the prize we are all working hard to get and Google hands out those prizes to people who have great content to offer. Google isn’t looking for pages of half-hearted content jam-packed with keywords. It’s all about content that truly adds to the customer experience. If you have something to say that’s informative, helpful, and provides an interesting take on a product, service, or solution, that’s seen as improving the customer experience and that is the type of content that Google is looking for. If you have pages of content that simply sing the praises of your brand and list specifications of a product, you might not rank quite as well as a competitor who provides a great content marketing blog and how-to articles that are lengthy and packed with all the answers to a consumer’s potential questions.
2. Content Marketing Enables a Real Connection with Your Target Audience.
It’s no secret that consumers these days are looking for a more personalised experienced. They don’t want to deal with robots and computers, they want to deal with real people who are truly helpful and informative. They also don’t want the entire process to feel like a business deal. Creating content provides the perfect opportunity to have a more conversational and relaxed approach with your target audience – and consumers really respond to this. It’s a good idea to make sure that you promptly respond to questions and comments that you receive on your content.
3. Great Content Positions You as an Expert in Your Field.
The more helpful and well-researched your content is, the better it is for you and your brand. You will start to appear as an expert in your field (and let’s face it, you really are!), as you appear in more search results and seem to be answering pertinent questions that consumers can’t find the answers to elsewhere. To ensure that this works in your favour, make sure that you plan your content. Make a list of possible questions that your target audience might have about your products and how to use them. Then set out to research and create content that answers these questions and even provides added information that closely relates to those questions.
4. Well Researched Content Gives Your Brand Credibility.
If you want to increase your online visibility as an expert without people questioning your credibility, you actually have to be credible.
Top tip: keep your content honest, well-researched, and truly credible.
It is important to ensure that your content – whether content marketing blog, interest piece, website content, product descriptions, or how to pieces – that all information is correct and on point. Avoid adding in extra waffle/fluff and untrue information just to appear as an expert, as you will quickly be outed by other industry experts looking to get their foot in the door. It might work in the beginning but soon, when consumers find that your content is unreliable, you will get a bad name for yourself. And that type of publicity spreads far quicker than the good type. Remember that content marketing is not just articles and blogs – there are various types of content marketing including:
- Check lists,
- Case studies,
5. Consistent Content Marketing Makes Social Proof Easier.
Think of how you personally respond to content that resonates with you. When you read a great article online, what do you do? Most would share it with someone else, look for the author or company behind the content on various social media platforms and follow them, and maybe even react to the article online with a “like”, a comment, or a share. This creates social proof. The more people you impress to the point of sparking this very type of behaviour, the more credible you become on social media platforms. Suddenly, every consumer engaging with your content has the potential of becoming a brand advocate for your business. People tend to trust what their friends are endorsing online and soon follow suit. Want your products and brand to spread like wildfire? Make your content so good that people cannot help but share it via their social media accounts, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn and similar. All types of content marketing work well on these social platforms.
6. Content Marketing Drives More Visibility to Your Product Pages.
The art of creating persuasive copy is taking the digital marketing world by storm. Advertising has moved away from bombarding consumers with catch phrases and psychological tricks and has entered a time where valuable content is provided along with recommendations that drive customers to your product pages. A consumer may think that your content is so helpful, that your product range must be just as good. And if you are a reliable supplier/service provider, it will be. Make sure that your how-to articles, YouTube videos, blogs etc don’t hard-sell products, but provide information and advice with a link or two to products that might be of interest to your consumers. It works!
7. Content Marketing Provides the Ultimate Convenience to Your Customers.
There’s a reason why the BBC is featuring articles reporting high street stores closing as online sales soar – that’s because online shopping brings a world of convenience to the modern consumer. Convenience is one of the greatest benefits of content marketing. With the majority of the population glued to their smartphones (for browsing, not actually for calling), it stands to reason that the modern consumer has no interest in actually visiting a store, typing a lengthy email, or making call after call to ask questions, compare answers (and products) and eventually come to a decision.
Content marketing makes the research and buying process far simpler for consumers. By planning your content carefully, you can provide your target audience with the answers to all their questions, and more. Best of all, they can access all of this information online at a time that’s most convenient to them. With the right content marketing plan, you can truly turn your business into a 24-hour business. Your customers won’t have a need to physically visit your store or even call you – everything they need will be right there, online.
8. Strategic Content Marketing Improves SEO Opportunities & Results.
Ever wondered why your business isn’t appearing in search engine results even though people are obviously searching for the very products that you sell? That’s probably because you don’t have enough keyword-relevant content out there. For every article, blog, or post that you publish, you have the opportunity to feature a variety of keywords that tell Google what your content is about. Don’t try to fool Google by keyword stuffing though. Google is smart enough to tell when someone is looking for the easy way out. Plan your content around specific keywords and search phrases, but don’t over do it. Use product names and take a look at your record of on-site searches (phrases consumers have typed into your website’s search box) to create content that your target audience are bound to find valuable. The more content you create, the more opportunity you have to boost your SEO and online visibility.
You can enjoy all of the benefits of content marketing if you are willing to put in the time and effort to plan, create, and publish your content strategically. Keyword research is important before you get to work on creating content. You can do all of this yourself, or take on the services of expert content marketers who are in the know – the choice is yours!