In today’s post, we explain what the advantages of adding such a strategy to your shop are and how to design a plan of action.
Get your pen and notebook out and let’s get started!!
What is content marketing?
According to Wikipedia, content marketing is focused on creating and distributing relevant content to direct quality traffic and convert it into clients. Since you may have understood nothing from that definition, let’s break it down point by point:
- Content: by “content” we mean not only posts. There are many more formats and variations. We’ll show you some examples later.
- Relevant: with this we mean that the content must interest our targeted audience. This is why it is so important to define your buyer persona.
- Quality traffic: we don’t want just any person coming to our shop, we want users who are interested in our products and services.
- Convert them into clients: with these contents we aim to turn a “cold” visit to our website into a relationship between the user and us so that they may become a client in the future.
Bear in mind that when someone reaches a website for the first time, it is very rare for them to want to buy something. In order to get to that point, we need them to get to know us and establish a relationship so they can trust us.
Advantages of a content marketing strategy
For any business (either online or offline), the main goal is to generate more income. As we have seen before, content helps us to get more clients, but this is by no means the only advantage.
1. It is not intrusive
Traditional marketing is based on interruption. You just need to think about TV commercials or in those pop-ups that appear on the Internet. Over time, audiences have become tired of these types of ads, so a different way of reaching our target audience has become necessary.
How? By creating free content that makes the users visit our website voluntarily.
Can you imagine that all of a sudden thousands of people start talking about your brand? That is what could happen if you create very attractive and attention-grabbing content. But be careful and make sure that when people talk about you, they do it in a positive way. ;)
3. Freshness and trust
In order to sell online, you need to gain your audience’s trust and in order to do that, content can be of great help. Not only can you show your knowledge about your field, but you can also share success stories or facts about your company.
4. Organic traffic
When creating content, we can get Google to position us according to the most relevant keywords in our field and get traffic from the search engine. Do you want to know how to optimize the SEO for your online shop? Read this basic guide that we have prepared for you.
5. Qualified visits
This is what we were talking about before in the definition above. With a content marketing strategy, we don’t want to get just any traffic, but rather people who are actually interested in our products (which will ease the sales).
6. Reduced costs
Indeed, content marketing is affordable, but it also implies a monetary (hiring a writer) or time investment. Maybe this quote from Guy Kawasaki will make it clear when to use the content marketing: “If you have more money than brains you should focus on outbound marketing. If you have more brains than money, you should focus on inbound marketing.”
Adding up all the listed advantages will make you sell more. And that is not something that only we say -- according to the annual Hubspot report, on average, an inbound marketing strategy can double an e-commerce conversion.
If your conversion rate is 4%, it will become 8%. Indeed!!, we are talking about double sales.
How to plan your content marketing strategy
Let’s start with the more practical section of the post where we are going to show you how to design your content plan of action.
Let’s get to it!
1. Current situation: where are we?
At this stage, we need to define the starting point. It is about analyzing the current situation and figuring out which aspect we want to improve. Depending on the evolution your business is at, the goals your set will be different.
- You just opened the shop: focus on gaining visits.
- You already have traffic: you can start a campaign to get leads so you can feed them emails.
- Increasing sales: you create a sales funnel with an autoresponder message.
As you can see, you first have to define the goal and, depending on what it is, you can establish the right strategy.
2. Goals: where do we want to be?
This is what we just mentioned. The first thing is to set the goals (remember that they always have to be concise and measurable).
Here you have some example:
- Increase the conversion rate by a specific %.
- Generate X visits of organic traffic.
- Get X subscribers to your YouTube channel.
Although content marketing is normally thought to be about simply gaining visits, the truth is that it also has to do with everything related to the buyer’s journey and purchasing cycle. Our contents are what must prove to the user that our products are the solution to their problems.
3. Buyer persona: who are we targeting?
Who are your ideal clients? Do you know their habits? What are their daily routines? If you don’t know what your clients need, what worries them, or how you can help them, your content strategy will make no sense.
Your content will only be attractive to your audience if it’s helpful or can help them solve a problem they may have. That’s why it’s so important to define your buyer persona.
4. Type of content: what to create?
As we said before, there’s much more than just traditional posts. In fact, multimedia formats are more popular than ever right now.
- Posts: like the one you are reading right now.
- Video: in order to learn about a product, users prefer watching a video 4 times more than reading text. And the trend is only increasing more and more: webinars, streaming, YouTube,... if the screen is your thing, don’t miss this post about video marketing for your e-commerce.
- Podcasts: when we wrote about how to create a podcast, we presented some data: 61% of listeners that heard about a product in a podcast ended up buying it.
- Utility marketing: you can create a free useful tool for your potential customers. Imagine that you have a pet cat. Surely you’d be interested in an application that keeps track of the times it needs to be fed or that calculates how much to feed it based on its weight.
- Images: they are perfect for content marketing on social networks. Try to create stunning pictures easily with Canva, Stencil, or Adobe Spark.
- Email marketing: email is the ideal tool to send special content to our subscribers. With these emails we try to reinforce our dominance in the field or to clearly show the benefits of our proposal.
As you can see, it is not all about writing. The potential of video is an obvious reality and podcasting is a total revolution in the USA that will son arrive elsewhere.
5. Editorial calendar: when and how much?
Now you have to determine the frequency with which you will be producing contents and the days that you will publish them. Be prudent and start with humble goals. You will always have another chance to increase the publishing rate. However, not maintaining a steady frequency gives off a bad image.
Tip: create an editorial calendar and define the topics that you are going to talk about ahead of time.
6. Channel: how are we going to send our content?
Which social networks is your buyer persona using? Do they prefer to read or watch videos? Do they run and prefer to listen to podcasts? If you think about, the target audience idea pops up yet again. Our priority always has to be to satisfy their necessities.
7. Promotion: how are we going to convert content into visits?
You already have your content and it is both good and useful. You are confident that you are adding a lot of value and that all of your potential clients should read it. But, how can we make that happen?
- Newsletter: tell your subscribers that there is new content available, fresh out of the oven.
- Facebook Ads: create a small and very segmented campaign towards your target audience. If you don’t know how to do it, read this post.
- Social networks: don’t move your post on only the same day you publish them. Use tools such as Hootsuite, Buffer, or Dlvr.
- Organic traffic: have a SEO strategy and try to position the most interesting keywords for conversion.
- Influencers: publish a guest post in other influencers’ blogs so you can also reach their audiences.
Promoting is as important as content creation itself, or even more so. If nobody reads your blog, you are just wasting your time and money.
Have you decided to get more clients thanks to content marketing?
Creating content is a great strategy for attracting and converting visitors into customers. In fact, its power to foster loyalty and generate recurring sales is one of the best benefits you can get from a strategy..
So, if you don’t have a blog yet, we can really only tell you: it’s getting late in the game!