Marketing Research > Content Marketing
Content marketing is the process of creating and sharing valuable free content to attract prospects and convert them into customers. The goal is to educate, entertain and inspire people to earn their trust and build brand awareness.
Content marketing as a marketing strategy can be valuable to educate your target audience and help them get excited about your business. It’s also a good way to stay in touch with and re-engage existing customers.
To understand why content marketing can work as a strategy, think about the buyer’s journey. For many companies, it may look something like this:
- Awareness phase: this is where the potential customer is seeking information on a topic. They may be looking for a solution to a problem they experience, or are simply looking for information on a topic they’re researching.
- Consideration phase: the potential customer is learning more about the options available that solve their problem, including your product or service.
- Purchase phase: the potential customer is looking for information on how to make a purchase.
Content marketing is a scalable way to bring in customers and potential customers to your site via each of these stages. You can create content that targets those in the awareness, consideration, or purchase phase. As long as the content is optimized and provides what the audience is looking for, it has the potential to continue to bring in potential customers long after it’s been created.
There are many different ways to get started with content marketing. A content strategy might include some or all of the following:
- Posting regularly to a blog. This can help you connect with customers and potential customers at any stage of the customer journey.
- Downloadable content (ebooks, templates). Gated downloadable content can work well to attract prospects at the top or middle of the funnel.
- Rich media (videos and podcasts). Rich media is a popular way to interact with your target audience, and can be used across many marketing strategies, including SEO, social, and PPC strategies.
- Webinars. Webinars can help educate your target audience and form a deeper, more personal connection with customers.
- Interactive tools. Interactive tools can showcase what your product has to offer, or simply serve as a way to engage your target market.
- Emails. Emails help companies regularly re-engage their customers and prospects who have expressed interest in their content or business.
- Landing pages. Good landing page content can be crucial to helping site visitors understand your product or service, see the value, and want to learn more.
Here we’ve only scratched the surface of content marketing. To dive deeper, check out these resources:
Developing a content strategy: Build a content strategy framework for a solid foundation – plus strategy examples from a retailer, manufacturer, consumer service, and tech company.
What is SEO? Here we’ll go over getting started with SEO, and how content marketing plays a big role in a successful SEO strategy.
Content marketing examples: Get started with content by learning from companies that already have a successful content strategy in place. Here we’ll cover 3 examples, including (1) a content strategy that works at scale, (2) a campaign that builds trust while bringing in organic traffic, and (3) user-generated content that focuses on social media.
How to repurpose content: Creating a great piece of content takes time and money. Repurposing content allows you to get the most out of the content you create.
How do you write content for landing pages? Great landing page copy helps create a more effective, results-oriented pages for your site.
How do I make a content shareable? Creating content that’s shareable on social media can involve more than just a catchy headline. Here’s a checklist that can help.
What is SaaS content marketing? Content is one of the most powerful tools a software-as-a-service company can use to attract, educate, and convert customers. Here we dive deeper into why content marketing works for SaaS.
What you need to know about top-of-funnel content: Here we go through a 5-step plan for finding content ideas for potential customers in the awareness phase.
What you need to know about middle-of-funnel content: B2B companies and B2C companies with long buying cycles can benefit from nurturing leads that are in the consideration phase of the buyer journey.
How do you create a good social media strategy? Content marketing makes possible other forms of marketing, like social media marketing. If you already have a content marketing strategy in the works, find out how you can incorporate it into a successful social media marketing strategy.