content golden nuggetsSome of our clients at DBC Digital in Denver have asked us what all the furor is over “content marketing.” What is it anyway?

Content marketing can be condensed in very basic terms to two essential points:

  • It’s providing golden nuggets of information that your readers want to read and
  • Identifying yourself as someone who relates to your clients’ issues.

Wait a minute, you say, that’s way too simple for the hottest new trend in inbound marketing. No, it really is that simple. But like many concepts that are simple, it’s not necessarily that easy. If your content marketing technique seems a little dull, here are a few tips you can take to hone your approach:

1. Build a solid foundation. If you’re new to content marketing, start with a few articles that will establish you as an expert in your industry. Focus on a particular segment in your field. Make sure your writing style is conversational, not preachy or “salesy.” The content of your writing will demonstrate on its own that you have a sophistication in your nuanced understanding of your readers’ issues. At that point, your readers will feel comfortable with you as a “go-to” resource for them to seek advice…and perhaps your products and services!

2. Write quality content. OK, that’s what this is all about anyway, isn’t it? Well, in a word – yes. Quality isn’t necessarily the fluidity of your writing style though. No one reads a business blog to discover the next Pulitzer Prize candidate. Readers want solid information about issues that concern them and their businesses. That determines quality more than any other factor.

How do you know if you’re writing quality content?  Two ways: First, what questions do your clients ask you about regularly?  Those questions each represent a possible blog topic.  Second, you’ll know by how many readers stick with you, as well as by the growth in your readership. If your writing is informative, well-constructed and people-oriented, then you’re already in a good place.

3. Attract to your content. If no one knows how to find you, it doesn’t serve you to have quality content in your business blog. Spread the word by having your blog address on everything available: your email signature, your business cards, letterhead, PR releases, traditional advertising and more.

An intriguing headline for your posts will also help you stand out from your competition. You can even post a guest blog on a friend’s already-established site. The possibilities here are limited only to your imagination.

4. Step outside your comfort zone. Harness the power of inbound marketing. Follow and comment on influential blogs in your industry.  Participate in social media forums. Do some research. Have you tried Pinterest yet? Why not? Know the answers!

Content marketing is one of the most natural approaches to inbound marketing yet developed. Have you adopted its principles to your business blogging yet? What’s your experience? Please let us know in the Comments section below.