- The most important aspect of content fundamentals is really defining and understanding the importance of content marketing. There's a lot of noise about content marketing today. Everyone's talking about it. There's a ton of content out there about it. But really a lot of marketers are not totally sure how to define content marketing and how to really fit it as part of their marketing strategy. Content marketing is the process of creating valuable, relevant content to attract, acquire, and engage your audience.
Now this is just one of the many possible definitions on content marketing, but it's one that I think really defines and exemplifies some of the great aspects of what content marketing can do for your business. Businesses today need content marketing. It's a critical aspect of being visible in today's digital busy world, so why? There's an abundance of information out there on the Internet for your customers. Your customers are sifting through thousands and hundreds of messages each day, whether it's doing their own research online, push messaging that's coming across from marketers, emails that are coming into their mailbox.
There's a ton of information out there, and it's extremely difficult for you as a marketer to get heard through all of that noise. We also live in a multidevice world. Your customers move seamlessly through their laptops to their phones to their tablet. They can carry information around with them in their pocket and access it any minute at any time in a 24/7 world. So because there is such an access to information and tons of these multidevices, it's difficult for you as a marketer to get heard from your customers.
We live in a multichannel world as well, so not only are your customers accessing information on multiple devices, but they're also accessing information across channels. What do I mean by that? Your customers are on social media, they're on search, they're on your website, they're on review sites like Yelp and Google. There's really a ton of different channels today that your customers live. As a marketer, it's important to be present and be relevant on all those channels.
What does all of this mean, all this information, these multidevices, multichannels? It's a very complex world out there and all of that equals attention scarcity. What that means is that your customers' attention is really divided amongst all of these different areas, and therefore, the attention that they actually have for you and your messaging is scarce. But content marketing helps you actually break through that noise because you're providing thought leadership and you're differentiating your brand from all the other brands out there.
By creating valuable, relevant, and educational content, you can be seen in front of your customers on those different channels, on those different devices, and really become that trusted resource through all of that information. Content marketing has these seven qualifications. So as you're thinking about planning out your content marketing strategy, and as you're thinking about content marketing in general for your business, make sure that these seven elements are present. Number 1, content marketing engages individuals on their own terms.
This means being available and being relevant where your audience lives, so that's that concept of multichannel, multidevice. Your content marketing is based on interactions with your buyers, so you should be creating content that is relevant to what your buyers want to hear and what they're searching for. Your content marketing should tell a continuous story. Your content should tell not only your business story but also the story of your customers. It really does have to be a story. It has to be a narrative that's interesting and engaging.
Make sure that content marketing is the right fit for your channels. You need to create different types of content for different channels. One type of content that's great for your social media channel might not be right for email marketing or a paid program that you're doing. Make sure that the content that you're creating is you think about being channel-specific. Number 5, your content has a clear purpose. This means that all content that you create should have a goal, should have a purpose in mind.
You're creating content for thought leadership, brand awareness, lead generation, all of these things. Make sure it has a purpose. That leads me to number 6. Your content marketing has pre-defined metrics. You should be creating content with end goals in mind, whether that's x amount of new customers, maybe it's new followers on your social networks. Whatever your pre-defined metrics should be, make sure you determine those before you go in and actually create that content.
Number 7, content marketing is almost always evergreen. This means keep in mind your entire lifecycle when you think about your different content. Content should last months, content should last years. It's not totally always like this. For instance sometimes you'll create a piece of content on a trend-related item for social media. That might not be evergreen, but your large pieces, your ebooks, you want to think about content themes and arcs that span multiple quarters so that you can get the most bang from your buck.
Just some additional stats to keep in mind as you're thinking about your content strategy and as we define content marketing further, 71% of consumers trust solutions that provide useful information without trying to sell something. Your content should be educational. It should be thought leadership for the purpose of building that trust and building those relationships over time. 62% of consumers trust solutions that provide information and best practices for tools they've bought.
You want to teach your customers how to use your products and services better. You want to teach them best practices and you want to educate them. This over time will really enable that lifelong value and that lifelong relationship building from your customers. Given our definition of content marketing and these seven qualifications, take some time to sit down and determine how you can fit your content marketing strategy into each of these seven items. By really mapping out your reasons for content marketing and defining what content marketing means for your business, you can truly create a content marketing strategy from A to Z.
The course explores creating a content plan, choosing content types, and developing an editorial calendar. It also explains how to write, edit, and design content, as well as choose the right mix of content and curate it for maximum impact, and closes with tips on measuring the impact of your content marketing efforts.
This course is part of a Learning Path approved by the American Marketing Association.
Gain the skills you need to become an AMA Professional Certified Marketer (PCM) in Digital Marketing by using the industry-leading courses and resources in the Learning Path. Take the AMA certification exam to show that you have what it takes to lead the digital transformation.
- What is content marketing?
- Hiring a content marketing team
- Creating buyer personas
- Developing a brand voice
- Setting goals
- Creating a content plan
- Writing, editing, designing, and curating content
- Promoting content on various channels
- Tracking performance