Content is Currency: Why Content Marketing Builds Brand Awareness, Increases Traffic to Your Site, and Promotes Customer Acquisitions
In today’s overwhelmingly complex and busy digital world, internet users have to allocate their limited time to content that only provides some sort of benefit to them. Targeting your audience with pleasing and educational content will not only help your business increase its web traffic, it can also promote new customer-acquisitions, increase brand awareness and strengthen customer loyalty.
In recent times, Coca-Cala, Chipotle, Wholefoods, and nearly all the big brands have shifted a lot of their marketing budget into content marketing. Why this trend?
Though we hate most traditional commercials, there are some ads that we at times do like, but even though we might like or even love some T.V. or Radio ads, we tend to forget about them pretty quickly. Quality content that provides insights, humor, opinion, analysis, generally tends to have a more enduring impact as it makes us think, laugh … and at times – it might even help us learn something new.
Here are some reasons why content marketing is more important today than ever before, and some tips on how to develop a winning strategy:
Content Marketing Puts Your Name Out There – Both on the street and on the web
Not all content is one-size-fits all. Prioritize the topics that are most important to your target audience. If your content is valuable and is driven by thought-leadership, then people will start talking about it, and conversely, they will also start talking about your brand. This is what marketers call “brand awareness.”
Whatever tone, purpose, or channel you chose, quality should be at the core of your content marketing strategy.
Facebook likes, social media follows (and un-follows), blog mentions, re-tweets, newsletter subscriptions: all these are valuable measurements of brand awareness. It’s important to keep track of these insights as they can give you an idea of what topics are working for you and what topics aren’t.
When developing your content marketing strategy, do not focus on the relationship between content campaigns and your general bottom line profits. The impact that your content campaigns might have on your profits may not be as easily measured. So don’t worry too much about tracking a return on your investment (ROI) of your content marketing campaign, the benefits are usually long-term.
Content Marketing through Story Telling Can Help You Build Brand Identity & Customer Loyalty
If you’re concerned about building brand identity and customer loyalty through content marketing, don’t sell a brand or image, rather focus on telling a story.
Story telling marketing has become a much more valuable marketing tactic than creative copywriting/advertising these days. Why? Because it can have a real impact on our emotions: it can make us laugh, it can teach us something new, and it’s something that we can connect to.
Today more than ever, people are connecting with real and personable experiences.
Whether it be through a blogpost, or a Facebook post, or whatever the channel you chose, be sure to not self-promote too much, rather focus on taking your audience on a journey, engage them into something unexpected. Do this by telling a story.
Well then, check out these great examples of how brands engage with their audiences – not through self-promoting advertisements- but rather through a story:
- Google tells a compelling (and true) story of how a man reunites with his long lost family thanks to Google Maps
- Moulton Bicycle Company creates brand identity and builds customer loyalty by telling the story of its uniqueness and devotion to quality.
Ok, so maybe you feel inspired now, but also intimidated by these examples. If so, think about the following hypothetical situations:
Perhaps you are an ophthalmologist, you just completed a complex but successful surgical procedure that helped one of your patients regain partial vision after years of blindness: that’s a compelling story – share it on social media.
Second example: You are family owned bakery and your business has been in your family for over three generations. You have history: blog about it.
Example three. You are an HVAC company, have no history, no compelling stories, and an unimpressive office … but wait … you might know of some energy saving strategies that might help some of your clients save money on their utility bills – exploit this knowledge and share your client’s story on your next email newsletter.
Bottom line is – you can tell a story and be creative without too many resources.
Sharing is Caring: Drive Traffic to Your Site and Build Brand Awareness
Quality and informative content tends to be shared more than traditional ads. Why? Because it is more valuable to users. As the content gets shared, people will be re-directed to your site, this will increase your traffic and your online visibility.
Sharing your original content on external sites can also help you. By doing this, you can direct traffic from external sources back to your site, just be sure to be clear about authorship and make sure to add a link to your site on your shared content. When sharing content, make sure it is unique and original, avoid duplicating content or copy-pasting. Duplicate content on multiple sites can hurt your website’s SEO.
Unique quality content will not only help you increase your site’s traffic, it will also help you differentiate your brand from your competitors’.
In the Long Term, Content Marketing Can Lead to Customer Acquisitions
Though content marketing may not be a factor that can immediately trigger a conversion, it can certainly play an important role within your conversion funnel.
Because there is a ton of content out there, focusing on quality and informative content can help your brand break through that noise and bring visibility to your site and products.
Content is currency, perhaps not as tradable or consumable as cash, but seen as an investment, it will, in the long term – help you acquire new conversions because your customers will engage with your message, they will appreciate your stories, they will learn something new, laugh at your humor, and most importantly, they will acquire a sense of trust and loyalty towards your brand.