Content Marketing: What it is and Why it Works

Content Marketing: What it is and Why it Works image ContentMarketingFORCE01

A marketing and PR phenomenon has exploded online and its name is content marketing. Businesses of all sizes know content marketing brings active participants more traffic, leads, and conversions.  Data shows the more content you have, whether it be website pages, blog articles, or landing pages, the better your results.

Please define content marketing.
Wikepedia’s definition is on target, “Content marketing is an umbrella term encompassing all marketing formats that involve the creation or sharing of content for the purpose of engaging current and potential consumer bases….as a means of achieving a variety of business goals. These may include: thought leadership, lead generation, increasing direct sales, introducing specific brand language and improving customer retention.”  According to Wikepedia, I’m a content engineer – “a new breed of marketer who creates, optimizes, and distributes the different types of content required to engage customers on the social web, based on the data of many analysis tools.”

What does content marketing look like?
Take a moment and scroll through this useful content marketing infographic by Marketo:

Content Marketing: What it is and Why it Works image Dig Ad Chart

Related Resource from B2CWebcast: PR Hacking: How Ideas Spread And What Marketers Need to Know

As you can see, content marketing has many faces: Social Media, Article Posting, In-Person Events, ENewsletters, Case Studies, Blogs, White Paper, Webinar/Webcast, Print Magazines, Videos, Promoting Content in Traditional Media, Microsites, Print Newsletters, Research Reports, Data Driven Content, Podcasts, Digital Magazines, Mobile, Virtual Conferences,  and Ebooks.  Engaging content is shared FIRST on one’s website and or blog and then distributed through Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, YouTube and/or other social media.

A worthwhile challenge
According to Marketo’s infographic, businesses struggle with creating engaging content. That’s understandable considering the skill set needed to do so.  Engaging or compelling content requires creative thinking, product/service knowledge, marketing savvy, the art of writing, the science of search engine optimization, and an understanding of website construction.  In addition, for best ROI, a competent digital marketing group uses analytics and social media monitoring tools before, during, and after content creation and distribution.   As mentioned in “Businesses Boldly Invest in Digital,” optimizing websites using analytics data is 2011′s most deployed digital marketing tactic. Clearly, content creation is far more creative and strategic than copywriting.  And, because it’s so effective, content marketing budgets continue to grow as businesses of all sizes strive to participate in what can be described as the best pull marketing strategy of all time.

Discuss This Article

Comments: 2

  • Ruth Zive says:

    Content for the sake of filler will fail. The key to a successful content marketing strategy is that the content MUST be engaging, authentic, consistent and dynamic. I absolutely believe that content marketing will give conventional advertising a run for its money. When done right, it is MUCH more engaging, interactive, cost-effective and pointed. But companies are struggling with how to do it RIGHT.

    • I agree wholeheartedly Ruth. Like you, I can’t say enough good things about the results that come from useful, compelling, optimized content. Companies ARE struggling to do it right because they simply don’t have the the artistic ability. New data shows over half of all companies outsource content marketing (to people like me) and that number will grow.

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