What is Content Marketing?

To lots of marketers, “content marketing” seems redundant. After all, most marketing programs are full of content. What makes content marketing different than just plain marketing?
In a nutshell, content marketing is a strategy that uses words and images to help you connect with targeted buyers online and then draw them deeper into a relationship that ultimately results in a sale. To be effective content marketing must be based on a deep understanding of the target audience – what interests them, who they respect and follow, where they go online for information and the words they use when talking about their problems. This deep understanding allows marketers to create content that prospects really value, as opposed to the technobabble that turns them off.
When you have great content (as judged by your audience), you’ll start to get more people coming to your web site and staying there. When they’ve had a positive experience they’re far more likely to divulge valuable personal information and give you permission to market back to them. That doesn’t mean they are ready to buy at that moment, but it does open the door for a conversation that ultimately can lead to a sale.
This all makes sense – but the problem is that many marketing organizations simply aren’t staffed to pump out fresh content all day long. Just keeping the basic information on your web site up-to-date can be a big job. So it’s important to have some strategies to help you keep up with demand:
• Recycle content from other places and times. That two-year old white paper that you’ve taken off the site because it’s no longer relevant or accurate? Chances are there are some nuggets of great content that can be pulled out and re-used on your web site or in your blog.
• Dissect big content for nuggets of value. Big white papers are great for impressing analysts and getting people to register. But not all content needs to be big. In fact, shorter pieces are perfect your web site, blog or newsletter. Busy buyers are often looking for quick-reads that offer good payback for their time.
• Recruit contributors. These days everyone is getting into the publishing act. And chances are there are potential contributors (engineers, sales people or even customers) sitting outside of the marketing department. The thrill of recognition is often enough to get them writing on your behalf.
• Use outside resources. To really get content marketing humming, many companies find it’s a good investment to use outside resources. By taking some of the burden off of your staff for writing (everyone’s least favorite job), you’ll get a more robust flow of content and have a happier staff.
When content marketing demands are too much for your team, contact Elastic Brands. We can support content marketing with planning (message platform and editorial calendars) to writing of all types, large and small.

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