In today’s digital world, content rules. Since the pandemic broke out, there has been a massive influx of content creators on different social media and blogging platforms. Some of them went into it as a way to still be productive during home isolation and quarantine, while others are doing it full-time in hopes of monetizing their accounts.
Business establishments with a low-to-zero online presence were forced to jump to the digital realm to stay afloat during these challenging times. However, being technically new to the online business world, most struggled with marketing and generating leads, especially when people were strapped financially.
As they performed their due diligence, they found that content marketing can help them navigate COVID-19 and stay highly visible online. But how far will it take them? Is content marketing worth it?
What is content marketing?
You’ve probably heard the term content marketing at least once in recent years but have no idea what it is about. How different is it from the typical marketing strategies that most businesses employ?
Simply put, content marketing is a strategy many businesses use today to attract and engage people. They do this by creating and sharing online content such as blogs, videos, podcasts, infographics, and other materials to develop an interest in their products or services without blatantly promoting them.
How does it help businesses?
You might ask why any company would go down a marketing route that doesn’t explicitly promote what they’re selling? The answer is simple enough — practicality.
Most people are already tired of and have grown numb to an in-your-face type of advertising. We are surrounded by advertisements and product placements from bigger companies that can afford massive multimedia marketing campaigns. Most of the time, it gets too overwhelming for the senses that folks have already identified it as a hard sell. This means they get in your face to get noticed.
Content marketing is different and slightly more sophisticated in its approach. One, there’s no hard selling involved. And people love that.
Two, they are creative in their presentation. It’s incredible how businesses can attract new people and retain old customers with highly engaging and relevant content. Companies no longer need to pay big bucks for advertising online. What they do is ask a content marketing company or a few freelancing professionals to help them create meaningful content for their site and social media accounts.
The content they publish can be anything that’s connected to their line of business. It can be a simple instructional or motivational vlog for Facebook and YouTube, or an article that answers questions like “What is ISO 9001 certification?” or “How can businesses navigate COVID-19?” that can be posted on their blog or website.
Three, publishing relevant content consistently helps put companies in a position identified as industry leaders and subject matter experts. This helps build their credibility online, especially if their material is often shared and reposted.
All the likes, comments, shares, and retweets give them a wider audience reach than the conventional advertising methods of print ads, brochures, and email marketing. Plus, it’s a lot more organic, especially if you consider search engine optimization or SEO as one of the main drivers of the content because not all content creators use SEO.
Four, it is more affordable compared to traditional advertising. The results show that companies get more bang for their buck with content marketing. This allows the smaller players, specifically the SMEs, to get a piece of the pie since they can’t compete financially with bigger companies. In a sense, it levels the playing field for business owners and entrepreneurs.
Is it truly effective?
The question in people’s minds now is this: how far will content marketing get you?
Just because many companies seem to be enjoying success and reaping the rewards of content marketing, it doesn’t necessarily mean that all who go down this route share the same results. While content marketing is an effective marketing strategy, its success entirely depends on how it is implemented.
One does not — and should not — dish out content just for the sake of putting it out. Understand that content marketing involves a lot of organizing and meticulous planning to effectively drive sales. If the content is unattractive, it will not engage your target audience and fail to generate the leads needed for a business to thrive.
But how does one know if the content they put out is effective and meaningful? You can know by the following:
- Online traffic generated (clicks, views, and time spent on the page)
- Reactions and interactions
The metrics mentioned above can help a business identify if its content marketing strategies are successful. It also serves as a cue if things need to be done differently and what adjustments must be made.
If done right, content marketing has unlimited potential in driving traffic, generating leads, and converting sales for a company. After all, it goes beyond the physical borders of an establishment’s location and has the potential for a worldwide reach.
Unlike other business strategies, content marketing has great potential in taking a business to an entirely new level. It can make a company thrive, and not just strive, during tough times. If done right, it can affect a lot of change not just on the company and the people in the organization but in the lives of the people they serve — if done right.