What exactly is content marketing?”
Six useful definitions of content marketing, but here is a quick version:
Content marketing is the strategic marketing approach of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.
In short, instead of pitching your products or services, you are delivering information that makes your buyer more intelligent. The essence of this content strategy is the belief that if we, as businesses, deliver consistent, ongoing valuable information to buyers, they ultimately reward us with their business and loyalty.
Do I really need to learn about another form of marketing?
Yes! Consumers have simply shut off the traditional world of marketing. They own a DVR to skip television advertising, often ignore magazine advertising, and now have become so adept at online “surfing” that they can take in online information without a care for banners or buttons (making them irrelevant). Smart marketers understand that traditional marketing is becoming less and less effective by the minute, and that there has to be a better way. Thought leaders and marketing experts from around the world, including the likes of Seth Godin and hundreds of the leading thinkers in marketing, have concluded that content marketing isn’t just the future, it’s the present (see the video below on the history of content marketing).
How is content marketing different from other forms of marketing?
There is a lot of confusion about what content marketing is — and what it isn’t. While the semantics are not that important, it’s useful to understand how content marketing plays with other forms of marketing:
- Content Marketing vs. Social Media Marketing: What’s the Difference?
- The 7 Business Goals of Content Marketing: Inbound Marketing Isn’t Enough
- How to Explain the Value of Content Marketing (Content marketing vs. traditional marketing)
Who is using content marketing?
Content marketing is being used by some of the greatest marketing organizations in the world, including P&G, Microsoft, Cisco Systems and John Deere. It’s also developed and executed by small businesses and one-person shops around the globe.
According to the 2013 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends research, 9 out of 10 B2B marketers are using content marketing – regardless of company size or industry. And they are doing what it takes to bring about desired results:
- On average, B2B marketers employ eight different content marketing tactics to achieve their marketing goals.
- 60 percent report that they plan to increase their spend on content marketing over the next 12 months.
- Marketers, on average, spend over a quarter of their marketing budget on content marketing.
How do I get started?
Here are a few articles to help you get started with content marketing:
- First Things First – Content Strategy Before Social Strategy
- The Essential Things You Need to Know When Adding Content Marketing to the Mix
- How to Get Started in Content Marketing
- 21 Things Content Marketing Experts Wish They Had Known When They Got Started
- How to Use Micro-Content in Your Marketing Strategy
- The 3 Big Myths of B2B Content Marketing
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