Content marketing is effective and well defined marketing efforts through creating and promoting relevant and consistent content to attract, educate and ultimately retain a highly targeted market. Now that we have that long definition out of the way, let’s get down to brass tacks. We will start with a little perspective here. Traditional marketing is constant and insistent direct campaigning with a bucketful of obvious messages, ideas and trends. There never is enough or something as too much, the main objective being that “if you bug someone enough, they will buy eventually”.
It worked well throughout the last century. What started as clever little quirks on salon soft boards soon turned to obstructive ads from Facebook that asked users if they need spare parts for their new lawn mower. The result is an overwhelming advocacy of tracking protection, identity hiding and the development of an internal thought filter that blocks the advertising components out of most campaigns.
The 5 Basic Types of Content Marketing
Conversely, content marketing is inbound marketing which is supposed to guide and inspire. The focus is enriching the user experience and allowing the user to consent to be marketed to. It’s as simple as that. The main problem lies in identifying and enriching the topics that spark the user’s fancy. It’s nothing obstructive; the topics tapped are the ones that closely relate to the companies services offered and the users who are supposed to read it are the ones researching on that particular topic.
There have been numerous marketing success stories attributed to using content marketing. Potential clients find their required services through their required content and if satisfied, they contact the service provider. It greatly streamlines the marketing cycle and a lot of grunt work is eliminated. A firm no longer has to utilize high pressure sales tactics, referrals rewarding systems or cold calling to achieve their market presence. Customers will come to their doors; already convinced and eager for collaboration. All thanks to some popular articles/media published months ago.
Now that we have defined content marketing let’s have a brief glimpse of the mediums of content marketing. Anything that is supposed to convey information or elucidate some matter can be used as content but some additional mediums of effective content marketing are classified below:
These are generally used alongside text to include various statistics, graphs and other information. Infographics are a very effective medium to transfer solid data since each data set is easily accessible and highly comprehensive. If your infographic is effective enough; it will travel half way around the world, being re-tweeted, shared or pinned multiple times. (Tip# aesthetically designed and interactive infographics are a great way to connect to teenagers or executive market segments. Both of whom are shown to value time and are highly elusive).
A webpage can be used for content marketing. There is subtle difference between content on a webpage and content marketing on a webpage. That subtlety is the interest or the desirability factor of that content. If your content is desirable, your webpage can generate traffic and you can get conversions. There is a multitude of popular websites that operate on this basis (Consider free resources like Moz, Microsoft support, Hubspot, Business Review Weekly, etc).
A book is a very effective lead generation tool. Weathered marketing executives use books to market their leadership and coaching services. The only hurdle to more people publishing such books is the perception of difficulty and complexity. In reality however, it is quite easy to publish a business book with minimal expectations. It costs a lot less than buying media coverage for your products. This is also a form of effective inbound marketing where your customers will seek you.
Podcasts are fairly popular in a very exclusive but gradually increasing community (iTunes users). If the podcasts are interesting and valuable, the influence is exponentially increased for the broadcaster. That particular influence can be subtly used to suggest new books, products or particular service providers. Podcasts are often free to use but if they are desirable enough, they can be monetized.
We all are familiar with YouTube. There is a ton of other digital content providers too. All of them operate on the basis of digital marketing through videos. Historically, videos have remained an untapped resource of online marketing; primarily, due to high production costs and absence of proper transmission mediums. With the advent of cheap video production, marketing and hosting services, this is a very effective medium to advertise products and services.
Note: For the latest and greatest trends in web design technologies and professional practices visit the series on “Web Design“.
Valuable content that is successful in achieving your goals is often reusable and Content Marketing can be quite effective if properly implemented. In this article we introduced content marketing. For advanced content marketing strategies, read our next blog at Pyxel, where we believe in ‘Quality without Compromise’.