Content marketing has been around for a long time. Some may think since social media started. Some may think since YouTube started. Others may think when blogging started. But it’s actually decades old and even centuries old. As long as there has been communication and commerce there have been marketers working to attract attention from customers.
The best content either entertains or educates. And the greatest content does both and connects with a brand. Not by necessarily incorporating the brand into the content, but by the brand being associated with creating the content. Either directly or as a sponsor.
Content marketing isn’t new. But it may be new to you. And maybe you’re still on the fence about it.
Here are some reasons that it’s possibly beneficial to you.
1. The 97/3 Sales Rule
Chet Holmes is a sales legend. He has often mentioned the importance of the 97/3 Sales Rule. Basically, a person is only ready to “buy now” for any product or service about 3% of the time. And when you think about it the number could be lower for a lot of things.
Take vehicles for example. Most of us don’t buy a car very often. But we may research and read about and watch videos about cars a lot of the time. For education and for entertainment. We build inventory of information so that when we are in buying mode again we’re prepared.
Content marketing is about the 97% of the time when you’re future buyers aren’t in buy now mode. You want to earn their attention so they know you exist. You can do that by creating content that keeps them engaged.
2. You Offer Value
Going a step further, when you’re creating content that people appreciated, you’re giving them value. You’re taking the step to put something beneficial out into the world. There is the hope that you’re going to bring in more business and increase sales. But you’re taking a leap of faith that by being the first to give that you will somehow make the world better and that Karma will eventually bring it back around to you.
3. You Build Familiarity and Trust
Most of your future customers don’t know you exist. That connection has to be made and then there usually needs to be some kind of trust built before a transaction occurs. Even if you offer some kind of free trial or free sample, people are leery about any possible strings that might be attached. They want to see that they can trust you.
Creating content can build this trust. It’s a low risk way for people to interact with you and your brand. They can learn about you by gauging your tone in the content. They can read comments. All kinds of things.
4. You Create Referral Opportunity
Word of mouth and referrals are great for business. The best way is when a current customer sends a colleague to us. That’s almost a guaranteed new customer. There is trust. It’s all there.
Content marketing can create new layers of referrals. People that just read your blog posts or listen to your podcast may hear a colleague mention a need that you can help with and that can lead to referrals. Or listeners will share your podcast episode with a friend just because they liked it and that friend may know someone that needs your product or service.
5. Content Can Be Repurposed
You are probably overwhelmed by all the different content platforms. There are basically three types of content:
But there are many platforms that allow for one or multiple of those.
The good thing with most content is that you can repurpose. You can start with longform video. Like a podcast interview. You can chop that up into shorter videos. You can post the audio as a podcast. You can have a writer take the episode and create one or multiple blog posts.
6. Compounding Return
Creating regular content is like putting money in the bank every month. The longer you do it the more it builds on itself. The more you create and the more people you bring in the more the platforms will want to send you more of their users. And the more your audience will want to send to their friends and colleagues.
Some content kind of gets lost in the shuffle on some platforms. But many, including your own website and blog, are especially built for compounding return. It’s even more true if you’re aiming to create timeless content versus newsworthy-type content.
7. You Learn and Improve Your Knowledge
Creating content is amazing for building your knowledge and skills as a creator. It’s obvious. The more video you create the better you become at capturing and editing. The more you write the better you become at writing. We know that’s how it works, but we don’t often follow through on it.
Creating some type of content can benefit your business in terms of sales. But it can also continually improve who you are in the industry. You can build your own knowledge and make sure you’re always on top of what’s going on in your industry.
8. Ease Sales and Support Teams
You can provide all kinds of content. You can create entertaining content. You can answer questions people have about the industry you’re in. But then you can get a little into sales and support type question and answer as well. If you see people asking the same question over and over, it’s a great opportunity for a video or a blog post. Or both. It can ease the demand on your team.
9. Create A Unique Brand Attribute
Content marketing certainly isn’t easy. So not many brands are really doing it. That is a HUGE opportunity for the brands that do because it can set you apart in your industry. You will always stand out with better products and people. But content marketing helps to set you apart. One way goes back to that referral effect that content marketing can create.
10. Add A Personal Touch
By creating content you’re likely going to add a personal touch to your brand. You’re going to share stories and case studies. You’re going to use certain language idioms. These little things add a personal touch to your brand. And in business we aren’t really brands doing business with people. We’re people doing business with people. And that’s the definition of personal.
11. Direct Traffic and Subscribers
Social media and other platforms always aim to keep their users on their platforms. Even Google is like that. And it makes sense. And it’s fine. There is still value in doing business on their platforms. But content marketing, especially on your own website is great for bringing in more direct traffic and subscribers. These are incredibly value to a business.
And we’re seeing more and more of this actually as social media gets more inclusive.
I hope that you take the step and start creating content for your business. It’s been beneficial to many businesses that I’ve encountered. It could be a video series. It could be a podcast. It could be a blog. It could be social media. It could be a combination or all. Hopefully this piece has helped you see the incredible value that content marketing can bring.