Let's talk about Content Marketing. As an entrepreneur or small business owner, it's probably a term you've heard of before, but do you really get it?
Do you understand what Content Marketing really is and the huge benefits it can have to your sales and profits?
If you have no idea, or just want a refresher, then you're in luck! Read on! I’m going to explain what Content Marketing actually is, and how you can use it in your business to grow your audience, create a more visible brand online, get more customers and make more sales!
I talk a LOT about content for your business - blogging, emails, social media posts, videos, podcasts etc - and if you do any of these things, you're already dipping into the world of Content Marketing!
What is Content Marketing?
Content Marketing involves creating and sharing online material, such as blog posts, videos, vlog, images, infographics and podcasts.
It's intended to attract attention and peak the interest of your target audience. Content Marketing aims to generate leads, expand your database, create sales and build trust.
Content Marketing isn't a quick fix though, it's a long term strategy that enables you to build a strong relationship with your audience by providing high quality and valuable information for your viewers.
If you're in business for the long term (and why wouldn't you be?!) then you MUST HAVE a content marketing strategy.
Content Marketing has been around for hundreds of years and if you want to read more about that side of things, this is fab explanation.
But I'm all about giving your practical and valuable advice that you can put into action today to get more leads, customers and sales in your business.
To do that, we need to start at the beginning - with your audience...
Understanding Your Audience
Before you sit down at your computer to create a blog post or post on Facebook, you need to first understand who you are talking to.
Here are some questions to answer about your audience:
What are their problems?
What are their needs?
What results do they want?
Some of these questions may look familiar and you may have covered them in your Customer Avatar Workbook when defining your ideal client.
But let's read that last question again: 'What results do they want?'
This goes much deeper than your customers problems, where they hang out, how old they are etc. When you really dig in deeper and figure out the answers to this question, you understand your clients core desire.
Remember, people don't want to go to the gym to get hot and sweaty, they want the results that come from going to the gym - to be healthier, fitter, slimmer etc.
Once you know your answers to this final question, you're on your way to creating your Content Marketing Strategy.
What are the benefits of content marketing?
Content Marketing has a ton of benefits!
It can be totally, 100% free!
Content marketing is great for SEO (meaning you can be found by customers in Google)
Creates brand awareness (if people don't know you exist, how can they buy from you?)
It increases website traffic
You can create a constant stream of new, targeted email subscribers (which you can then market & sell to)
Content marketing helps you to create a following and audience on social media
It improves customer retention rates
Helps you to build professional networks
If you understand and utilise online content marketing for your business, you'll see some of the highest profits and best customers around! Plus, your business can make money 24/7.
Using Social Media for Your Content Marketing
So now you know how awesome content marketing is, let’s look at some ways you can implement it into your daily life as an entrepreneur.
Social media is a great platform for content marketing. It’s quick and easy to do and has literally billions of people using the platforms every day.
Thousands of these social media users are your target audience!
Well thought out posts, videos and images published to platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube & Twitter are going to get in front of those thousands of people.
But the key to creating this content and utilising these benefits are those first three words - well thought out.
Before you post a single thing you must have a reason to be posting it.
Think about the results you want from that post.
Some results you may want are:
To grow your email list
To gain more exposure and visibility online
To become known as the expert in your industry / niche
To make a sale
To help and advice others
To solve a problem
To boost your website traffic
To get comments and exposure to a blog post
You must first start with WHY you are posting, in order to create and design social media posts that ACHIEVE this result.
The great thing about using social media as part of your content marketing strategy is that you can create and schedule your content in advance, so it is published consistently.
You should be posting consistently on your Business Page as well as create a Facebook Group - both are excellent opportunities to build a following, create engagement and build the Like, Know & Trust factor that is so important in order to make sales!