Introduction To Digital Content Marketing
“Digital Content Marketing is a commitment, not a campaign.” – Jon Buscall, Head of Jontus Media
The content is the spirit of digital content marketing. It has been there ever since there was a need to inform prospects about the products or services long before the term ‘content marketing’ was coined by marketers. Then why on earth people at large in the marketing world are so conscious about this term if it is not new! There comes the need to focus on the intricate parts of digital content marketing.
- First, clear, concise, and compelling content has to be there to educate people about the product features
- Second, it should build a relationship, which, in turn, is built on trust that drives the revenue
- Third, relevant, consistent, and valuable content must flow
- Fourth, meeting the features described in the above three points we can claim we are creating quality content that should be engaging to attract users’ attention
- Last but not the least, unlike the past practices, today’s content is not pitched but being spread among the target audience with an expectation to educate them with the product information. They should reward us with the sales leads and brand loyalty
Therefore, compiling all these aspects we can define digital content marketing in the following manner:
“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 in order to drive lucrative customer action.”
Obviously, the content was marketed earlier. The new paradigm added is the ‘valuable, relevant, and consistent content that is being marketed or rather distributed. Content marketing, known as the art of communicating with your potential customers, is non-interruption marketing (the inbound marketing facets). The prospects surely revert to lucrative actions for the businesses if they are satisfied with the unconditional objectives to educate them about the products and services.
Good content always draws, informs, influences serves, and involves buyers’ personalities and prospects across the whole lifecycle and bonds with your business and brand. It caters to the questions and answers of the potential customers during and after the buying journey in connection with direct and indirect business goals. Digital Content marketing creates the brand, and more importantly, the digital marketing and business goals are associated with the content marketing exercises.
As long as digital marketing is concerned, digital content marketing is really an important portion that determines the fate of all campaigns. Nearly 81% of shoppers research online before finally buying the intended products. And in that online search process, tentatively 79 days on average are spent by the consumers.
So, what solid benefits the digital content marketing yield?
- The content must educate or inform the customers.
- A thought leadership approach should be established through a digital content marketing drive.
- The content must be entertaining.
- The content must be proving to overcome all potential objections.
- Sparkling, debatable, interactive, and community-driven content should be produced. The ideology behind this objective is to give the users a platform to use the online content.
- The content must improve customer experience and optimize market efficiency.
- The content must empower the sales force, partners, and stakeholders
Having envisaged content that hovers around the mutual profit must be produced – for your business and your customers. Given below B2B organizational goals have been set up the basis on the success of the content marketing drives. Nearly, 60% of B2B decision-makers claim branded content helps them make better purchase decisions, while 61% of customers are prone to buy from companies that give them personalized content.
Content Marketing evolution and overlaps
Content marketing became very well known and accepted by many people from different industries. So, it would become more of a digital content marketing strategy and tactics even if it is called marketing. Some early adopters felt it would simply transition into another form of marketing. This is true for all forms of ‘marketing’ from an integrated viewpoint. Still, it is very much distinguished from other digital content marketing strategies and approaches, such as corporate blogging, which is seen not only as content marketing but social media and inbound marketing. Finally, it is believed content marketing will change depending on the evolutions of the media, i.e., digital marketing, and would focus on the converged media.
Content marketing has been interpreted variously depending on the several adoptions and success. Some envisioned when content marketing would be popular, it would become a temporary trend, with the advent of the huge amount of content to be created. Previous witnesses and practitioners called this ‘content shock’ or ‘content marketing backlash.’ Please find below this content marketing popularity as per Google trends.
As per the Gartner study, the peak of inflated expectations shall be reached by 2018-2023; content marketing had not even reached that mark yet.
Another key to success is to know your customers – their needs, wants, likes, dislikes, and values. You must know what exactly interests them. You need to ask them, find, and engage them through your content. Now, build your content plan and content marketing strategy around it when you are sure your content is in alignment with the intent, quests, needs, and perceptions. So, we can easily say content marketing success and customer experience success are two sides of the same coin.
Digital Content Marketing
This is true that content marketing is not just about digital content marketing, but it cannot be ignored the digital edge always works the best as long as digital sources are becoming more important in the buyer’s journey, the customer lifecycle, and customer psychology and preferences as well. Content acts the innermost part in digital content marketing. All potential customers make some researches before actually buying any product online. There are, however, other channels of digital marketing.
- Search Engine Marketing (PPC)
- Search Engine Optimization (Organic Traffic)
- Email Marketing
- Social Media Marketing
- Digital Display Marketing
And content marketing plays a decisive role in coordination with all these facets of digital marketing and the entire process is called integrated digital marketing. This is like a team wherein content is the leader making a perfect liaison with other channels or members of the team. Without asking each one of them about their contribution to increasing the customer base, it will employ every one of them as per their relevant strengths and produce something, which would be more than what each member can
Integrated digital marketing workflow
Instead of searching content in the obvious lanes, start searching for consistent and relevant content everywhere in your company as it is full of content. You can check in the customer support desk, in the R&D department, HR pool, internal communications, and even in the cafeteria and common rooms. You would be amazed to find they have huge knowledge about the product, the company, long-forgotten things, and the customers. Take the content, and make the right use of it. You will be able to create engaging content that would attract a new potential audience and build brand loyalty. The below infographics would give a rough idea of how a company uses its content in different channels of digital marketing; which company is using as per their spending budgets; which tactics are more renowned; what are the challenges faced (if any); why should companies use content marketing; and are content marketing budget increasing.
Content marketing and different kinds of media
Digital marketers always look for using integrated content marketing as it works the best. And practically, it would involve a fusion of channels and media. Content marketers have selected the below five most used media for the digital content marketing purpose:
- Owned media: The website and blog
- Earned media: Where people will talk about you
- Shared media: Community-driven platforms and content
- Paid media: When you generally pay to share content about your business
- Converged media: Here two or more channels of paid, owned, or earned media are integrated
Designing engaging content
A well-built content marketing strategy comprises a range of content types, so as single pieces start to take shape, there are some precise things to keep in mind:
Combine digital content marketing strategy with the blog strategy. The digital content marketing company blog must be used to consistently circulate the content online. In the absence of proper SEO, the blog marketing really
The e-books designed with a descriptive arrangement and good visual design must rock. The language needs to be conversational if that is okay with your brand personality.
This is a maximum of two to three pages document carrying enough room for embedding relevant images so that the readers can quickly scan through the document.
Workbooks and Templates
These documents can also be available for printing and made as interactive and practical as possible.
White papers and Reports
Known basically as educational materials, these are quite similar to the e-books, but these are less graphically designed, and the use of language is a bit more specialized. Also, through these, you can effortlessly associate with other companies.
The name is self-explanatory – the mixture of less text information and more graphical representation. It would be based more on this ideology – “seeing means believing.” You may not have professional artists to create the infographics, but you can take help from so many sites that cater to free services. But for serious effect, you need to have a dedicated graphics designer.
Minimal texts and big images and graphics are there in the slide decks. It simply breaks the monotony of complex memes into simple forms.
Part of the sound digital content marketing strategy involves creating videos that are relevant and posting in different sites, including YouTube, several blogs, etc., which will really help you get the attention of the potential customers.
Prepare case studies with real facts and evidence and complete stories. This will finally help the content get focused on the value and results.
Content Marketing and Social Media
For more entry-level and interesting pieces, social media acts as the basic vehicle to market the content. Different phases of social media promotion (e.g., owned, paid, earned, and converged media) a content marketer will use. Each social network has different kinds of audiences and users. And accordingly, the content would be changed. For each demographic region, the content would be totally unique. Some digital content marketing examples of social media used are Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc.
Content Marketing and SEO
Content is effectively marketed through SEO techniques. Different search engines are there, and for each one of them, there is a specific rule to promote content. A good SEO is first customer-centric, other than complying with a need for dedicated algorithms for different search engines. Link building, page ranking, site popularity, effective keywords strategies, generating natural links, etc., are all part of the SEO initiatives. Content, here, acts like flowing blood to take different objects into the heart – digital marketing. And SEO always tracks only content. In all these tasks, customer or visitor satisfaction is a must. A search engine will first see how relevant the content is, and pertinent content always serves its visitors.
Gated vs. Ungated Content
Once the content library is ready, the next step is to arrange your campaign to steer business objectives. Digital Content marketing is always known to earn trust, but gating some of your valuable content is the right practice. Gating large resources are the right way to generate leads, know the seriousness of the visitors, and nurture leads.
Content Marketing Plan
The documented content marketing strategy has seven possible checklists to structure the right content marketing plan.
- A business plan for innovation
- A business case for content marketing
- Persona development and content mapping
- Our brand story
- Channel plan
Each step has several questions to be answered. Once it is ready, the content marketer can easily start working to build up an effective digital content marketing framework.
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Again read the content marketing definition one more time, removing the relevant and valuable. That would be the distinction between content marketing and the other informational mumbo jumbo you receive from companies attempting to sell you their “products.” Most of the time, the information that companies send us is not very relevant or valuable. Can we reject the content? No. Sometimes, we are made foolish by that and make sales that are not intended. That’s what makes content marketing so fascinating in today’s surroundings of thousands of promotional messages for each individual.
A good digital content marketing strategy actually makes a person stop, read, interprets, feel, and act in a different way. In most cases, the potential customer is well-informed by the content, and satisfied, he would surely reciprocate with sales leads. Just remember the famous saying by Leo Burnett, “Make it simple. Make it memorable. Make it inviting to look at. Make it fun to read.” And in the words of David Ogilvy, “Do not address your readers as though they were gathered together in a stadium. When people read your copy, they are alone. Pretend you are writing to each of them a letter on behalf of your client.”
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