The content marketing is incredibly present in business world. It is used by some of the greatest marketing organizations in the world, including P&G, Microsoft and Cisco Systems. Nevertheless, it is also developed and executed by small businesses and one-man shops around the globe. So if you are part of the small business, you might want to consider using this strategy to promote the services and products you offer and to attract costumers. Another good side of content marketing is that this is actually very logical and easy approach. It will just take a bit of your time and thinking, until you create the idea which is the basis of your business.
For a start let’s define content marketing.
Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire and engage a clearly defined and target audience and the objective is to drive profitable customer action. What makes this marketing strategy specific is its non-interrupting character. Instead of pitching your products or services, you deliver information that make your buyer more intelligent or better informed. The main idea is-if you, as business, deliver consistent, ongoing valuable information to buyers, they ultimately reward you with their business and loyalty. It’s the way to get respect of your prospects and their trust.
The first step in creating your content marketing strategy is to define:
* Your ideal customer and your target group
* The problems they face
* How can your company help them find the solution
You cannot expect to market and sell to non defined or poorly understood groups of prospects.
Your goal is the positive outcomes that your prospects can envision as a result of working with you and your company. Therefore you must be realistic but how to start a small business. You must determine what problems you can and will solve, and which can’t. That’s the only way for you to become a trusted source of information for your target buyers. The trust transforms skeptical customers into long-term ones. When you provide relevant and meaningful content you start to get their attention and their trust.
The best way to provide constantly new and fresh content (which is crucial since you yourself need constant contact with your buyers) is to have a blog, beside a basic, original site. Adding critical mass of information online is the best way for small business to fulfill this part of strategy. The good thing about the blog is that, regularly updated and well maintained, it makes your company more valuable over time.
Working with modern, virtual and new technology tools for marketing you may feel a bit odd at some point. If you have some doubts, or if you lack of ideas, it’s useful to take on the role of traditional media in the minds of your customers by thinking like a publisher. For example, if you need to get close to a taste or need of your prospects, think about what kind of newspapers or magazine would your target group like to read.
This is where we meet the fact that for this type of marketing, one of the most important skills is writing. So, you shouldn’t only imagine you are a publisher, but you must also be very good in putting the ideas and information into text. Therefore, many small companies have someone in their team who has all the qualities of a writer or journalist. If you don’t, you may also contract someone who can translate your knowledge into accessible and compelling content.
It’s preferable to take a look on competition. Although you should never use competition as argument (many entrepreneurs make this mistake-comparing themselves with their competition in public, in order to show they are better), as a professional you must be informed what other companies of similar services or products offer, how is their approach, what is it that you can do better in your marketing, what is it that is rare or missing on the market. Than you can really improve your own strategy. And be better than them.
Your final goal and therefore the final and key step in your content marketing is the moment when your customers make a transit from learning from you to buying from you. It’s the matter of your ability-the point is to teach your prospects what is that they really need and to provide them to buy it easily, from you. One good advice is that often put yourself on their place and think how good is your website, blog or your advices and information generally. Your offer must be complete and abundant and your service efficient. It might seem hard or complicated, but you don’t have to be a marketing expert to run a content marketing (you will become one, on the way). You have to be an expert in your own services or products if not you can always leverage small business consulting firms for assistance.