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7 Content Marketing Secrets Your Competitors Wish You Didn’t Know
Posted by Cameron Francis on July 06, 2016 in Content Marketing

7 Content Marketing Secrets Your Competitors Wish You Didn’t Know

If you’re a budding marketer, there’s no doubt you’ve heard the saying “content is king.” So, you started producing content by the dozen in the hopes of capturing your audience’s attention.

But let me be brutally honest with you.

If you don’t stop churning out thin meaningless content, then more sooner than later, your audience will grow tired of it and abandon your brand.

content marketing cycle

Don’t let this happen to you.

It’s time to revamp your methodology with proven content marketing strategies that will make your target audience stop, read and take action – the way you want them to.

 

Content Marketing and Your Business

These days, content marketing is regarded as a crucial part of raising brand awareness.

how humans access web content

With over $135 billion spent on online marketing content each year, many smart marketers are now embracing the fact that digital content marketing is becoming more effective in promoting brand awareness.

However, content marketing can be quite a challenge. It does not only require a great content strategy but also the right attitude as a marketer.

Additionally, before you can think through and put up a content marketing strategy, you need to be aware of what makes good content.

 

Characteristics of a Good and Effective Content

Did you know that content is the heart and soul of digital marketing?

In fact, the success of your marketing campaign greatly depends on the effectiveness of your content.

creating effective content

Therefore, your content will only be considered king if it possesses the characteristics that enables it to rule. So be sure that the content you are going to market for brand awareness has the following characteristics:

  • Informative
  • Relevant
  • Entertaining
  • Honest
  • Consistent

Informative

In case you forgot, good content must be informative enough to give your target audience fresh and new insights. It must also be valuable and has actionable information that is able to help consumers solve their problems.

give target audience fresh and new insights

And remember, in content marketing, hard-selling is a big no-no. Your goal first is to educate or inform your audience with your content before directing them to the sales funnel.

Relevant

Without relevance in your content, people won’t even bother to read or take a glimpse at all. The time of day that you market your content plays a big role as well.

relevant content

Promoting your content too soon or too late can make it less relevant. Your content must always be trending, appropriate and timely. It must also be aligned to your business and your marketing goal.

Entertaining

entertaining content

Always keep in mind that people love to be entertained. However, it doesn’t mean that your content must always be entertaining. Remember, people would also admire content that would make them cringe or cry. This means that good content is able to connect emotionally with the audience.

Honest

Good content must have personality. So, don’t be afraid to tell your audience what you really have in mind. For instance, in your blog or web content don’t be afraid to open up an idea. Add context, a name, or a background story to your content to make it more realistic.

Make use of effective storytelling.

Doing this with your content makes your audience trust you.

Consistent

You don’t want to annoy your audience, right? So, make it easy for them to find you by following a consistent pattern for your content.

consistent content pattern is the key

Changing the voice or tone of your content too often or too much can degrade your user engagement. You can always be in front of your customers if you have a repeatable and consistent system that governs the creation and publishing of your content.

To sum it up, good content captures people’s interest in what you have to offer. It can deliver great results in the form of brand loyalty, lead generation, and reputation building. This is so because good content is something that people will love to share with their friends, thus spreading brand awareness.

Now that you know what it takes to have a good content, the next thing you will need is an effective content marketing strategy to attract the right kind of audience.

 

How to Create a Great Content Marketing Strategy

creating creative content marketing strategy

Creating an effective content marketing strategy is not an easy task. It requires a step-by-step process to be able to achieve its goal. And that is bringing your business on top of everything, making you the leader in your industry.

Before you can begin, be aware that your content marketing effort won’t work without the help of the different social media channels, SEO, and blogging. Be sure to have these things incorporated in your content marketing effort.

Another important aspect is to be familiar with the very basic of content marketing which is the content equation. You have to bear in mind this formula: epic content + great outreach = an effective content marketing strategy.

I think you already have enough background. So let’s jump into creating a content marketing strategy that rocks.

1. Define your goals

define your goals

Having a clear vision of your business goals is one of the pillars of a successful content marketing campaign.

Knowing your goals helps you create an effective online content strategy that engages the search engines and most importantly, your target customers. This, in turn, generates a better return on investment, enhances your search rankings and grows your sales.

2. Identify who your target audience is

You can’t just simply push any form of content to your audience.

identify target audience

You must need to know what tone or voice of content that captures your customers’ attention. It’s also imperative for you to find out where your target audience likes to hang out frequently, on what time of day and as well as knowing their browsing habits.

Doing this helps make your marketing easier.

Of course, identifying your target market is not always easy. However, there are a few things that can help do the trick. This includes using Google analytics to track traffic reports and researching for various survey results.

3. Identify popular content

thumbsup

Besides defining your goal and identifying your target market, you must also need to know what type of content is popular within your target demographic. Knowing what your customers and prospects are dying to read or watch is helpful in creating content that will captivate your target audience.

Having knowledge on the trending content will give you a clear vision of what to offer to your target audience that will be valuable to them. It as well enables you to find the right influencers who have created this content which has the most number of shares.

You might be wondering what the role of influencers is in your content marketing strategy. Read on to find out.

4. Leverage influencers

In content marketing, apart from good content, you will also need “influencers” who can help make your marketing efforts a success.

leverage influencers

Influencers are early adopters of various social media platforms or online media channels who have already earned a huge following. They are self-made celebrities and a non-competing business, person or blogger.

They can be found across all industries and may have followers who are similar to your target audience. They are helpful in promoting your brand, product or services. So be sure to find influencers who can relate to your brand and have created the most shared content.

5. Curate compelling content

At this point, you may have probably defined your goal on what you are going to accomplish with your content. You may have also defined your target audience and have researched about the popular content that your target market will like.

lighted bulb

So now it’s time to curate your content.

Curating means delivering the best and most relevant content that meets your audience’s specific needs.

Keep in mind that when creating content you must utilise proven content frameworks that will easily engage your target audience. Also, always maintain consistency in your content across various platforms.

Crafting high-quality content regularly to keep your customers updated about your product or services can be a very stressful proposition. This is especially true if you run out of time and content ideas.

However, do not fret. We have here a list of several types of proven content that deliver results.

Industry News

Get your audience engaged by giving them valuable information such as the latest trends within your industry. Here, you will need to find compelling stories and post at the perfect timing when almost all of your audience is online.

How-to Guides

This type of content is the perfect starting point for those who have just started their content marketing effort. Creating this kind of content positions you as an authority figure as you expertly educate and help your customers attain a solution to a certain dilemma.

User-generated Content

These days people are often more enthusiastic and attentive about hearing what their friends or other people have to say about a particular product that they have an interest in rather than hearing what brands have to say.

This is when influencers come in handy. You may alternatively collaborate with these people within your industry to be able to reach a wider customer base and increase content output.

Blogs

When creating blogs, always bear in mind to make them useful, compelling, and can be easily digested. This means you have to stuff your posts with subjects that matter in your industry. Do not make it too long for your audience to read. Ideally, limit your blog content around 500-800 words.

Viral Content

This type of content is very challenging to create, though. However, if you hit the right note, it can drive a considerable number of site traffic and strengthen your brand awareness.

There are some proven tips on how you can create viral content. Make sure that your topic has a positive impact that will arouse the emotional aspect of your readers.

Be sure to trigger some of the highly-arousal emotions that will help you craft a contagious content. This emotion includes:

  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Awe
  • Joy
  • Fear
  • Surprise
  • Lust

6. Consider the visual aspect

visual aspect

You have to be aware that people these days are more captivated with visual contents than the purely text-based ones. In fact, visually engaging content gets the more likes and shares. They can include:

Infographics – If done the right way, infographics can be very engaging pieces of content. Get the right, captivating design and a compelling story, then, you’re good to go. It must also include quality stats and data.

Slides – Repurposing some of your existing content into slides is the quickest and easiest way to attract a new audience.

Videos – Utilising videos is the simplest way to create a statement for your brand and reach larger potential customers. Video contents are easy to monitor with regards to their total views, shares and subscribers, among others.

7. Choose the right media channels

Now that you are aware of the various types of content you can craft for your brand, the next step involves exploring various media channels. You have to figure out the perfect combination to utilise for distribution of your content to reach out your customers.

social media channels

This will be an easy task for you if you have already researched your target audience and influencers beforehand. The next step is to find out what media channels they frequently hang out, which is where you should promote your content.

Taking heed of these steps enables you to map out an effective content marketing strategy. However, the journey doesn’t end there.

You have to keep on nurturing your relationship with your customers by creating and sharing content with them regularly. It is highly advisable to have an editorial calendar to ensure consistency and regularity in your posting.

Most importantly, measure your success by tracking your posts and finding out their performance. Ideally, if your content is useful and informative, there will be a decrease in your bounce rate and as well as an improvement in your user engagement.

So, let me ask you this; is your content marketing strategy in good shape?

Share your thoughts with us by posting a comment below.

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Cameron Francis

Co-Founder

Cameron Francis is the CoFounder & Managing Director of ETRAFFIC, Melbourne's #1 Creative & Digital Marketing Agency. For over a decade Cameron has been providing growth marketing and digital strategies for over 2,000 small businesses, start-ups & entrepreneurs around the country.
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