What do you want to achieve with content marketing? Do you want to establish your thought leadership, boost your search engine rankings, increase your lead generation?
Content marketing can help with all of the above, but each requires a specific approach. The goals you are trying to reach will point you to the objectives you should be pursuing and, by extension, the type of content marketing you should practice. But how do you determine which goal is the most important one for your company?
Take a look at three main goals you can accomplish through content marketing and think about what your company can gain from each. By learning more about them and the possibilities they can help you achieve, you can determine which one ultimately makes the most sense for your company to pursue right now.
Thought leadership is about presenting yourself and your company as innovators and leaders in your space by creating content that is thought-provoking and makes waves in your industry.
What kinds of content can help you do this? By creating guest-contributed articles in online publications your audience reads, and earning press mentions from other industry leaders, you’ll be able to showcase your knowledge to a wider audience and obtain third-party credibility. You’ll also want to build up your on-site content, like your blog and whitepapers, so that when people check out your site, they have other great content to engage with.
People want to work with companies they trust, and people trust people more than brands. By showing a few subject matter experts from your company as the people behind the brand, you can scale that trust and engage with a larger audience. This ability to build trust through content marketing by establishing your company as a thought leader in the industry will ultimately lead to more people wanting to do business with you.
Proving yourself as an industry leader and innovator also offers benefits to your personal and professional brand. By consistently creating the content mentioned above, you could begin to attract speaking engagements, land columns in noted publications, and even write a book one day! Thought leadership content ultimately shows that you can command audiences with a unique perspective and that you have knowledge to share on the issues and concerns that relate to them.
When your website is a ghost town, it’s probably because you’re getting lost in the search rankings. If your competitors dominate the first page of search results for the terms your audience is searching, you’re at an extreme disadvantage.
Using the right content and keywords can gradually move your website to the first page in search results and help you compete directly where it matters most — online. Content optimized for search can help you rise up in the rankings for the keywords most relevant to the products or services you provide. One of the most basic methods to boost SEO is to write search-optimized articles for your blog. Building pillar pages around your top keywords will help you lock down a link-building strategy that will work wonders for your SEO.
If you’re not visible in search rankings, you’re not visible at all, so any aspect of your company that deserves more attention should be addressed by SEO-optimized content. This will help you keep up with the competition within your industry, expand your reach to new audiences, and appear in search results when your audience is searching for answers.
Unlike the other two objectives, lead generation isn’t about attracting the biggest audience; it’s about attracting the right audience — the target customers who are most likely to buy your products or services.
Great content, when used correctly, can do much of the heavy lifting for your sales teams. With 72% of marketers saying that content marketing has boosted their number of leads, using an approach rooted in educating over selling seems like a no-brainer. Rather than relentlessly pitching your product or service to potential customers, content can help you spark their interest without breathing down their necks.
Hosting co-branded webinars is one great way to use the content you’re creating to engage new audience members and offer them helpful tips they can use. This positions you as a resource and can give you the ability to continuously educate prospects via email marketing and blog content throughout the buyer journey until they’re ready for a partnership.
Using content to generate leads is a great way to direct prospects to the most informative and helpful aspects of what you do and eventually show them that working with you is beneficial. If your goal is to increase sales, content focused on lead generation can guide leads through the sales funnel to a purchase decision, boosting your bottom line.
Your success with content marketing will ultimately be determined by having a strategy that includes creating great content and getting it in front of the right audiences. But before you can plan that perfect content strategy, you’ll need to start by identifying which goal is most important for you to reach.