When it comes to marketing your product or service, it’s easy to default into shoving salesy pieces down your consumer’s throats. In particular, catchy slogans that aim to stick in the forefront of your target audiences’ minds. 

As the marketing world has evolved, however, so has the content that brands and companies put out to connect and engage with their customers. 

Marketing is no longer about amplifying a tagline to reach as many people as possible in the hopes that some of them will find it relevant. There is so much more scope at hand to humanise your brand and form a relationship with your audience through effective content marketing tools (such as storytelling). 

The truth is, consumers are keen to connect with your company’s journey and understand the story (and the voice) behind the brand. 

Content Marketing for Marketers 

Content marketing is all about educating your audience on WHY your brand does what it does, and how that will benefit your audience. 

“Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”

The Content Marketing Institute 

Content marketing isn’t about you – it focuses on your audience and what they truly care about. 

#Contentmarketing is educational, not promotional, says @MicheleLinn.

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Content marketing can take many forms, such as; educational articles, entertainment, videos, e-books, and webinars – all of which answer specific questions customers have, allowing them to gain the information they can’t find elsewhere. It is the best way to turn your product or service into something unique and different from everyone else’s. 

By providing a breadth of informative resources on topics that matter to your customers, your business will be discovered by the right people. By providing genuinely useful information you will help your brand to build stronger customer relationships and grow an actively engaged subscriber base. Which will in turn result in increased profit for your business. 

Be a valuable content resource to prospects & your business is more likely to get discovered. @MicheleLinn

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Don’t get me wrong, it takes a lot of hard work, persistence, and patience when it comes to producing effective content marketing for your business. The results, however, are well worth the time and energy put in. 

Here are a few reasons why it is worth investing in good quality content marketing for your brand. 

Attract the right audience

Consumers use Google to ask questions and hunt down relevant information. Naturally, you want your business to be at the top of those search results. Using content marketing such as blog posts, e-books, and videos to answer people’s questions is your key to making this happen. 

Creating that presence is, of course, only the first step, but it is vital in reaping the benefits that come from business content marketing.

 

Microsoft Blog Campaign named ‘Stories’ 

Keep your audience engaged and interested

As we mentioned before, attracting your audience is only the first step – now it’s time to focus on the value of the content you’re producing, and it’s ability to compel readers to engage with your business. 

Your aim is to turn those readers into subscribers and customers who will continue engaging with your business on an ongoing basis. Once you’ve established a strong audience base, your content efforts will increase your sales, and gather valuable customer feedback to create your very own brand followers and advocates. 

Sony Alpha Universe is a content platform for photography professionals. Sony has provided its consumers with an online space to read around the subject of photography and further educate themselves around their products. This encourages their readers to turn into subscribers and then eventual loyal customers. 

Sony’s Alpha Universe 

Gain new customers

The main goal for marketers are to, of course, generate increased revenue – and content marketing is a powerful tool for this. 

When you build a readership and consumer base that both trust you and want to hear from you, they are much more likely to purchase your products. Letting your customers know that their opinion matters and their voice is heard is a very effective way to attract new readers into investing in your business. Complete transparency goes a very long way. 

As you can see here with ‘Our food, Your Questions’ campaign, McDonald’s put their customers at the forefront of their business by answering any questions they had about their food. Consumers were left satisfied that they were getting the answers they wanted, and felt heard by a global brand.  

McDonald’s Question Time

Build increased revenue with existing customers

Coca-cola is a world-wide recognised brand that is loved by many. They chose to build a strong emotional connection with their existing customers by introducing the world-famous “Share a Coke” campaign which allowed consumers to purchase the classic coke bottle personalised with their own name. This campaign was so successful because they made it about the customer, not themselves. 

Coke is a wonderful brand to use as an example of using extremely effective marketing content strategies to connect and engage with their loyal customers. They are all about the people, even targeting relevant and present issues and not letting their consumers feel in any way ignored. 

Coca Cola News Blogs

Content Marketing Practices to Remember 

Hopefully, this has inspired your creative juices to get flowing in how to best target your brand’s audience to communicate and connect with them effectively. 

So, just to sum up: 

  1. Remember the power a good story has, especially when it comes to portraying your brand’s voice to your customers. 
  2. The various tools you can use to create different types of content – visuals go a long way!
  3. Give your consumers the opportunity to easily get a hold of you to have their voice heard and feel taken care of. 
  4. Build trust with your customers.
  5. Make your brand about your audience, not about you. Talk about relevant issues that can start an important conversation and build stronger relationships. 

Following these practices are sure to transform your brand image. They’ll not only help in gaining more customers (and more money) but will establish your credibility as a company that cares. Go on, set yourself apart from the rest. 

 

Maria Asaad, Copywriter
SocialWebsite storytelling