What is ‘content marketing’? A real life example

what-is-content-marketing

You’ve probably seen the term ‘content marketing’ – but what does it actually mean? Read on to find out.

What is content marketing?

Our free digital marketing course offered some quick tips on how to get started updating your website, using social media and using email lists to market your business.  Using quality articles to bring in more visitors is known as ‘content marketing’.

As Google change their criteria when ranking sites to weed out people trying to manipulate the system, great content has become the best way of generating lasting traffic to your site. This article uses a real life example how content marketing, social media and email marketing can combine to make your business more money.

Example – local accountant

We will use the example of a local accountant. While having a website may help them attract some new customers, regular updates will form a more active marketing strategy.

Demographics

Firstly the accountant needs to define who their potential client is. In this example, people who run small businesses in the local area or further afield.

Writing content people want to read

The accountant can use their news/blog section to bring new traffic to the site, build trust and credibility and demonstrate their expertise and your experience. Adding focused articles of around 300 words will slowly increase traffic and these people can then become customers or clients. They may enquire straight away, but if they are not ready to buy just yet you can aim to collect their email and keep in touch for when they are ready to go ahead.

Instead of a block of text, ‘top ten’ or similar lists are a good way of offering easy to read information. Search engines will pick up these articles and people will also link to them from their websites or social media accounts, bringing more relevant visitors.

The accountant can add details of projects they’ve been working on to show potential clients what they offer. General accounting news and changes to taxation law are also useful for many small businesses.

But won’t giving information for free reduce enquiries?

By demonstrating your knowledge and providing genuinely useful information, you will have more success. Businesses often fear that giving away their knowledge will mean losing customers, but this is not the case.

While you might offer a lot of information in your blog, hardly anyone will read your entire blog from start to finish. They will often come on at a blog page, read that and a few other pages and then contact you. Giving away knowledge will increase your customers or clients, not reduce them.

Spreading the word

You can use your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ accounts to post links back to your interesting content. As this is useful information rather than a sales message, people are more likely to read and share your articles.

Converting visitors to enquiries

Once people are on your site, use a prominent ‘call to action’ and let them know the next step at the end of the article. This may be emailing you, calling you or filling in your contact form.

As well as direct calls to action, you can also collect email addresses using a form on your website and market to people that are not ready to buy right now. You can offer a free download or a series of emails containing similar tips or information. This could even be a PDF of the same information you have on your blog, as people will find this much easier to read. In the future you can then send details of discounts or products or services to your email list and increase your sales or bookings.

Summary

Using this example, you can see how writing useful content can increase your website traffic and ultimately your customers or clients. An upcoming blog will look at some tricks for generating ideas for new articles.

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