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Content Marketing. Please Explain.

January 5, 2019

We’re calling it – 2019 is the year of content marketing.

So, you should probably know what on earth we’re talking about when you ask us for a recommendation on what you should be focusing on for your business marketing efforts (hint: it’s the topic of this blog you’re currently reading).

Content marketing is just making content right? Put simply, no. It’s not marketing with content like brochures or billboards either, and before you ask – no, it’s not a “viral video”. Content marketing means acting like a publisher, consistently creating content that your customers actually want to read, share and engage with. That’s cool, but what does that mean? And why bother? (because we get you – it sounds like a LOT of effort)

Let’s start with what you can be doing. There are many different types of content that your business may be able to create – educational, helpful, participatory, entertaining – just to name a few. Let’s dive a little deeper into each of those types to get your brains thinking about what’s possible for your business:

Educational Content

People are constantly wanting to learn. Why do you think Google is so damn popular (maybe not all for learning – funny dog videos are also a popular search term). Harness the desires of your customers and give them tutorials, how-to videos, publish white papers, and conduct webinars. Have you ever stumbled across a great shareable infographic that you’ve shared with your friends? Bingo – the publisher has nailed their content marketing! We talk a lot about data, and here’s your chance to turn the data you own into engaging, educational content.

Helpful Content

Helpful content is about one thing: making your customers’ lives easier. Ever used the McDonalds app to order your cheeseburger so you didn’t have to wait in line (we definitely haven’t… much) – You’ve used a product of content marketing! Think about ways that you can solve problems for your customers – maybe it’s through an app, maybe it’s sharing resources that will help customers use your product with ease. Whatever it is, this can be a great place to start!

Participatory Content

One of our favourite things about the world wide web (oooooooo!) is that brands can now have conversations with their customers, with the relationship turning into a 2 way conversation, rather than only going from brand > customer. Your customers are one of your most important assets, so why not make them part of your story! Use live video and let your customers engage and comment, create live experiences that they can be a part of and share, run user generated content competitions and use quizzes and polls to engage people even further. Encouraging participation is a sure fire way to start your content marketing in 2019 with a bang!

Entertaining Content

We’re not talking about vine compilations (although very entertaining), but turning “boring”, or “not-thought-to-be-entertaining” topics into great content pieces. Tell stories with videos, podcasts, articles – bring humour into the equation, provide entertainment to your customers when they are least expecting it. One of our favourite examples of entertaining content is HelloFlo, who created a now leading online publisher from content marketing focussed on one awkward topic: Periods. If you’ve never seen their series of videos including the iconic First Moon Party, and the hilarious Camp Gyno then you’re about to laugh out loud at this great piece of content marketing. Have a read of their story for some inspiration, and if you’ve ever thought your business was too “boring” for content marketing, just remember that a period starter pack company had one of the most popular videos of 2015… anything is possible!

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We’re sure your brains are now REELING with amazing, award-winning ideas, so while we’ve got you amped for a year of content marketing, here’s a list of all of the reasons why you should take those life-changing ideas, and get them started.

  • Content marketing gives your customers value. You’re not selling to them, and you’re not promoting your brand, but you’re providing them with value (whether that be a laugh, or a lesson!), and they’ll remember that when it matters.
  • It’s authentic. Trust us, people are over advertising.
  • While it begins as a blog post, or video on your own website, it can quickly lead to PR, being shared on socials and other high value websites. Backlinks, SEO! It’s like a chain reaction of the digital marketing kind. VERY GOOD STUFF.
  • It “pulls” your customers in, rather than “pushing” your advertising onto them.
  • About 75% of consumers expect brands to contribute to their well-being and quality of life, but only 40% believe that brands are doing so – you can be in that 40%!

 

Feeling like you’re going to take out the award for best content marketing campaign of 2019? GO YOU. We’re glad we could inspire you to greatness. However, if you need some help with ideating, or bringing your campaign to life (or this sounds like far too much work for an early January blog post and you’re not quite ready to admit it’s 2019 yet), let us know. We love content, and would love to help.

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