Jan 5, 2022 3:26:04 PM
You are starting a business, and it’s exciting, no doubt. What might be less of a thrill is the idea of dealing with content marketing. Don’t take it personally. Many people diving into the world of startups face the same buzzkill.
It doesn’t have to be that way, though. There are mechanisms, techniques, and tricks startups can use to tackle that particular mountain. Content marketing is easier than you might think. All you need is a little guidance. We’ve got you covered.
What Is Content Marketing?
The first step is to get a basic idea of what content marketing entails. As with most things, there is a lot of misinformation out there.
Content marketing is a focused approach to developing and delivering useful, relevant, and consistent content. The goal is to attract and maintain a specific audience – and, eventually, to convert potential customers to someone that spends money and helps to promote your brand to friends and family.
Content marketing helps to drive revenue by developing loyal followers for your business. What content marketing isn’t is a lot of fluff or spam. Your job is to create relevant and valuable information for your audience. If you can do that, you show them your value as a company, and that leads to:
- Higher sales
- Lower costs
- Loyal customers
Once upon a time, businesses spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on print ads and other old-school marketing tools just trying to get people to their door. Today, marketing is a bit different, thanks to the digital age. The internet opens up opportunities that entrepreneurs could only dream about 50 years ago.
Why Consider Content Marketing?
Content marketing is vital because it helps you create trust, develop connections, enhance conversions, and generate leads by answering your audience's queries. Customers nowadays demand high-quality, consistent content from their favorite businesses, which will not be you without it.
Great content is a valuable asset. It has the potential to provide memorable experiences for your new clients and entice them to return for more. It's your key to keeping your audience's attention and sustaining a favorable brand image. Your audience is more inclined to believe your advice and suggestions if you provide valuable information without expecting anything in return.
You also generate leads through content marketing. Tools like calls to action (CTA) – “Call our office today to find great deals” – embedded in the content will create fresh leads.
Become the Authority With Content Marketing
Creating high-quality content will also aid in the development of your online authority. If your company has a reputation for being a reliable source of information, you're more likely to rank higher in search engines.
Furthermore, if your consumers regard you as an industry expert, they are more likely to trust you. Your material should reflect your competence in your subject while also providing relevant solutions to the queries of your audience.
What Is an Example of Good Content Marketing?
When done correctly, content marketing can be one of the most powerful and cost-effective generators of web traffic and business success. With a good plan in place, well-executed content may help you establish your brand, differentiate yourself from the competition, and attract highly qualified prospects. So, who does content marketing, right?
L'Oréal Paris has long been a makeup industry innovator, with bright lipsticks, delicate foundation, and a well-known skincare line. However, it is the brand's interactive Signature Faces content marketing that is piquing the interest of their unique audience.
Signature Faces employs artificial intelligence filters that allow you to examine how different lipstick hues might appear on you without leaving the safety and security of your own home.
Here, L'Oréal Paris provides their audience with a pandemic-friendly approach to trying out their products. It is a fun way to draw people in during a time when going to the store to get a makeover is not a great option. It's entertaining, simple to use, and extremely useful during a period when people are less able to go shopping.
They do three things right with this campaign:
- They put the needs of their clients first by understanding they want to try on new shades but cannot get to a boutique or store to test them out.
- They provide information that is valuable to their client.
- They give them a tech-savvy way to remember their brand and products.
On top of all that, they are giving their audience quality content. It’s interactive and informative. That is the main goal for any business indulging in content marketing.
How Is Content Marketing Different for Start-Ups?
Content marketing is all about developing that brand and getting it recognized. It is also one of the most affordable ways to get the word out about who you are and what you do. Research shows that content marketing is as much as 62 percent less expensive than traditional marketing options like print media.
Not only that, but it is more effective. Imagine how many more people see a social media post than a billboard. With content marketing, you reach more people and do it in a targeted way. With the billboard, you have to hope that the people who just happen to drive by also fall into your target audience, but what are the odds, really?
With online marketing, if they are reading your ad, chances are they are potential leads. It takes the guesswork out of both brand development and lead generation. That’s important because, as a startup, you don’t have the existing brand reputation that L'Oréal Paris does, for example. You are still trying to build loyalists that will buy your product or service. Quality content is how you get there more efficiently and for less cost.
How To Develop a Content Marketing Strategy?
The first step is research. Content marketing is a broad term, and you need to understand the terminology. For instance:
- Content strategy is a plan for developing your content. It involves setting objectives and figuring out how to reach them using content tools like blog posts, videos, and social media.
- An infographic is a visual item that showcases data and information.
- Interactive content is something that actively engages a reader or viewer, like a survey or a hashtag campaign.
- Influencers are usually celebrities who use social media to help influence their audience and support your brand. The right influencer, think Kim, Kanye, or Messi, can deliver the right message to an audience most likely to use your services. Getting an influencer to support your brand is a huge asset.
Once you have a working understanding of the process and terms, you create a strategy that will work best for your startup. The only fundamental limitation is that you provide quality content that offers value to your audience. Anything short of that comes off spammy and has less of an impact.
Setting up a blog is a practical place to start your content marketing journey. They are easy to create and something that people look for when doing research on products or looking to answer questions like: “How do I thread a needle?” If you are the sewing products company that answers that question, well, you will develop fans quickly. Most audiences look for brands that generate valuable information that is easy to understand.
Social Media Accounts
Another critical step is to set up a presence on mainstream social media platforms. Which ones you choose may depend on many factors. For instance, a company that sells clothes to teens or young adults wants to be on TikTok. The business-to-business (B2B) brand will want to be on LinkedIn.
Gated content helps generate leads. You might set up a page that leads your reader to your newest e-book or a discount program. But to access the prize, they must give you their email address. This technique works well for startups that don’t have an email list to use for marketing.
Videos add a personal touch as you deliver your quality content. You can introduce people to your product, service, or team, show them how things work, and boost your internet presence. Videos have the added benefit of expanding your social media efforts. You can post the video on Facebook. YouTube and Instagram to drive traffic to your website.
Get an Influencer On Board
This is one of the most beneficial steps you can take and the hardest. Influencers don’t have to be A-list celebrities. They only have to have a large group of followers in your target audience. With her millions of followers, Kim K. may not want to represent your product, but an influencer in your industry and demographic with 200,000 can be less expensive and just as effective.
With a little work, you might be able to grab the attention of an influencer and get a follow, a comment, a like, or a share on social media. You can also use a company to help you establish a relationship with an influencer. Make sure to pick a business with an excellent reputation to avoid scam sites.
Startup Content Marketing: Step-By-Step Approach
Once you have the best tools in place, you create a plan for your content marketing. Here are some steps to follow to get you going:
- Define realistic marketing objectives for your business. Make sure they align with your business model and focus on your target audience.
- Get to know your audience. Do an in-depth breakdown of your target. What age is your average customer? What connects your prospects? Are they all new parents, for example, or young women? Once you understand your audience, find out what they want. You might do surveys or interviews to see what social media platforms they use or what piques their interest.
- Pick your keywords. Keywords are what make sure your content reaches the right audience. They also help improve your search page rankings. Start with primary keywords such as makeup or junior clothes and build from there. A makeup company might expand its keywords to things like choosing the right lipstick or applying foundation. Your keywords should relate to both your industry and your content. If your blog is about dogs, choose keywords for that topic.
- Create your content, and don’t be afraid to get creative. The more attention you get, well, the more attention you get, and that’s a good thing.
You will make few choices for your business success as important as developing an effective content marketing strategy. Give it the attention it demands.