You are probably aware of the importance of content marketing. You may even understand its role in online marketing, not just from a search engine optimisation perspective, but in it’s ability to attract and engage an audience, otherwise known as Inbound Marketing.
If you’re not yet convinced you only have to look at studies by companies like Hubspot showing that inbound marketing costs 62% less per lead than traditional, outbound marketing or the change large brands like Coca-Cola are making to their marketing strategy.
So if many are aware of the pro-active part content can play in marketing, why are so few using it?
Unlike other types of marketing from agencies or other 3rd parties, content marketing doesn’t work as well when outsourced. The tone of voice, subject matter and consistency of both, work best when they come from inside a company. Internal knowledge leads to specific use of terminology, can highlight relationships the writer has with products or the company and really good content just oozes passion.
The fact content is most effective when produced in-house, and cannot easily be tasked to an agency, creates a barrier to entry for many businesses.
Okay, content marketing is important, it’s best produced in-house, but how to fit content production into an already busy workplace?
1. It’s All In The Plan
Using a content calendar should not be underestimated, pre-planning and committing content to particular dates will result in a more consistent output. It is also easier to assign content production once you know what and when something is to be produced. As with other must do work, when given the right level of importance within the work day, content marketing is not always the burden it first seems.
2. Turning On The Tap
Writing on demand can be tough enough for a seasoned professional, let alone when content production has been made an additional part of your day job. You need stimulus to allow you to output content of interest so that it does not cover the same ground. A useful way of doing this is to read associated articles, news items or blog posts that are related to your area of work and that you can share an opinion on.
Writing about something topical has the added benefit of creating interest. Maybe it’s a change in the law that effects your industry, a new invention that may impact your customers or even a celebrity that has interacted with some part of your business sector.
3. Catch A Habit
Once you get in the flow of noticing opportunities to create content all you need do now is create it. To do this on a regular basis you need to make it a habit.
At first, even if you can’t think what to write or say into a video camera, write or say anything, everyday. Once you get in the habit of doing it ideas will flow out in your creation time. You never need publish anything you’re not happy with, but by committing to an action each day you’ll produce more content and of higher quality.
You have a plan, you’ve got the tap turned on full and you’re addicted to creating content like a 90 year-old chain smoker to nicotine. Now is the time to focus.
You need to look for opportunities to create content around specific areas in your sector. The more defined you can be the better. Let’s say you’re in financial services, try producing a series on mortgages, where regulation allows. This will highlight your expertise in this area and if you make the content connected, potential customers will come back to consume the next episode; all the time you are building trust, your brand and demonstrating your knowledge.
5. Now Apply It
You can use this methodology in any industry, in Business to Business or Business to Consumer, when selling services or products. Once you get the routine going, the time and effort is minimal, and the cost negligible.
The big bonus is that many other parts of your business will benefit from the regular content; giving you something to share on social platforms, create discussion around in online groups and even bolster your search engine optimisation.
If you try it, do let me know how you get on. I assure you it will be some of the best marketing you ever did.