In a time when social media marketing has pretty much taken the headlines, it can be easy to forget the more consistent foundations that are still relevant, but perhaps not as talked about. Content marketing is still a highly viable, useful and frequently used form of outreach.
In fact, it is one of the most popular methods of expanding a loyal user base today; where social media captures the attention of new users and promotes visibility, content marketing keeps them coming back.
Let’s start with content marketing best practices, and close up with some great examples.
Focus on Quality
Rather than posting each day or even weekly, only publish posts when you manage to create well-researched, interesting, and excellent pieces of content that is worthwhile sharing.
If you’re having problems with coming up with ideas for content, you’re definitely not alone. Although coming up with content ideas that are consistently creative is difficult, it is possible. Try these tools to get some ideas on what to write on!
Use Semantic Analysis Tools
Semantic analysis means clustering your target topic into related topics and concepts. It helps writers create better-researched better-optimized content that meets the needs of both users and search engines.
It did turn out to be a great tool for content optimization. Not only was it forcing me to create better-researched content, it also tripled my organic search traffic which I found quite awesome.
Create Visually Appealing Content
Images and videos make your content engaging. Both generate shares and comments, as well as increase your conversions. High-quality visual content is also not hard to create! You can use custom images in seconds and this Video Maker will help you put together professional videos quickly and easily:
Try Local Content Marketing
Local content marketing is one of the most effective lead generation tactics because the competition is not too high in particular areas.
Before starting to integrate local content into marketing campaigns, ensure it is logical for the business. To determine if this is the case, ask yourself one simple question: would I use local advertising to obtain new leads? If the answer is yes, it makes sense to use local content, but if not, it is not logical for you to use local content.
If you are not a local business, marketing strategies with local content should be used only on top of your main content strategy due to scalability. For a business in more than 200 cities, creating content for each of these cities does not make sense. You’ll do better by creating universally relevant content and then add some content that is specific to big cities every now and then.
If you are a new company launching a food delivery app in Denver, creating local content makes sense as the target audience for the app is only in Denver.
Diversify Your Content
There are many types of content that you can experiment with, including:
- Blog posts
The reach of your blog can expand if you publish different types of content. This also allows you to tap into audiences that were not accessible previously.
Email marketing is another type of content marketing that shouldn’t be neglected. It can deliver great results, and it’s quite easy to set up thanks to these email marketing tools.
For proof of the importance of content marketing, you need only look at the big guys and how they are making it a primary focus of their campaigns. Here are some inspiring content marketing case studies.
Content Marketing Examples
When it first came on the scene in 2006, Mint.com had a difficult job ahead. It wasn’t just a matter of getting their name out there. They were dealing with people’s personal finances, and so they had to foster an image of being both trustworthy and reliable. That isn’t an easy task for any startup, especially in such uncertain financial times. Add in people’s nature mistrust on the Internet thanks to the prevalence of scams and identity theft, and it made their job all the harder.
In order to get past this problem and establish itself as a contender against already established financial sites like Quicken, Mint began an aggressive content marketing strategy. Unlike many other campaigns by competitors, it took the road of being personable and relating on a more intimate basis with its readership. MintLife, their constantly updated blog, used various freelancers and dedicated editorial staff to build a content-heavy blog full of advice, answers for users questions and updates on the industry.
They also used multiple forms of content, from written articles to infographics and videos. Their efforts were successful, and they are not the go-to financial monitoring service on the web.
Kraft has been in the spotlight recently for their content marketing efforts. Instead of running a site that is based entirely around staff created content, they have provided about half of their blog from user contributions. They regularly ask for recipes using their products, and because they are a well established brand, they have gotten a great deal of responses to the call.
Add in the social media campaigns they have incorporated into this strategy, and you have the perfect example of how they have used the two forms to complement one another. Sites like Pinterest and Facebook have been used to both ask for and spread related user content in a visual way.
While all of this makes up the bulk of its strategy, it still provides plenty of professional content mixed in with what they have gotten from users. This includes articles, tips, trick and especially quick videos showing their products being used in recipes. These are created in the same way as a television advertisement, giving it a two-tiered purpose that is highly effective.
While the examples above have been more ‘bigger picture’ based, Whole Foods has taken another angle to their strategy. Instead of one large campaign that uses a single or multiple platforms as part of that whole, it has made a more locally based network that apply to the brand itself. They have Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, blogs, a main site, and store specific sites, often containing content meant for a single state or even location. Each of these has content that has been catered for that demographic itself, so it is all more customizable and able to make a local attempt at outreach.
As for the content itself, it walks the line between industry and personal focus. On one hand you have tips, recipes and advice for using brands sold in the store or local fare. While on the other you have industry and food news in categories like fair trade, organics and the FDA, all of which are sure to be relevant and important to those who choose to shop at Whole Foods.
Do you think a certain brand’s content marketing campaign has done an exemplary job at utilizing their tools? Let us know in the comments.