Content marketing has long been a staple in any business’ toolkit.
It is the art of creating new content, such as articles, infographics, and videos for your website for marketing purposes. It has a multitude of benefits, but a key reason to invest in content marketing is its ability to improve brand awareness, with 80% of marketers saying that it achieves this goal, followed by 75% saying that content marketing builds credibility and trust and 70% saying that it educates audiences.
Creating your own content marketing strategy for small business is no small feat, but it is possible. Here are our key tips for business owners looking to reap the rewards of a strong content marketing plan.
1. Create content with your sales funnel in mind.
A sales funnel is the journey that potential customers go through on the way to making a purchase from a business.
The standard sales funnel begins with awareness, where the audience becomes aware of your brand. This is followed by interest, where they take a closer look at what you offer, then intent, where they consider making a purchase. Finally, they take action.
Exactly what this customer journey looks like can vary from brand to brand, but any business can benefit from creating content that targets various stages of the funnel.
The objective of your content should differ depending on the stage of the funnel you’re targeting:
- Awareness: Provide relevant information your target audience is searching for, and offer a compelling introduction to your business.
- Interest: Meaningfully describe how your product or service solves a problem or offers value.
- Intent: Reaffirm your expertise and incentivise your audience to take the next step – making a purchase.
- Action: Answer specific questions your customers want to know about your product or service and the purchase process.
For example, a dental practice might create a content plan for each stage of the sales funnel that looks like this:
- Awareness: A video discussing the importance of dental health.
- Interest: An infographic explaining what happens during a initial check-up and clean
- Intent: An email newsletter offering a discount for new patients
- Action: An FAQ page with information about costs, billing, bookings etc.
2. Tailor your content types to your audience.
For your content marketing to reach the right people and be successful, it needs to be tailored to your specific audience.
When it comes to content preferences, 2021 research showed that although there are some similarities between age groups, there are some notable generational differences as well.
While all age groups named email as their top preferred marketing channel, younger consumers were more receptive to social media content and online advertising. Older generations still preferred more traditional marketing mediums such as TV ads, although digital marketing was gaining impact.
With your target audience in mind, it’s worthwhile testing a mix of content types and channels, and assessing what resonates most at the end of the month. This will inform what kinds of content to stick with when planning your marketing for the months ahead.
3. Focus on evergreen content.
Evergreen content is any content that stays relevant for a long time – sometimes indefinitely.
Solid evergreen content is detailed, informative and optimised for search engines with relevant keywords and queries (words and phrases that people type into a search box to pull up a list of results).
Some evergreen content examples include:
- What is digital marketing?
- How to clean shower glass
- Fruit and vegetable seasons guide
- How to find a good electrician
- 30 easy exercises you can do at home
According to 2021 research by BuzzSumo and Backlinko, content types that are most likely to remain evergreen include lists, how-to guides, data-driven research and industry reports.
While it’s important to create seasonal content that’s relevant to your business at different times of the year, don’t overlook the value of evergreen content in attracting potential new customers. Done right, it can generate search traffic to your website all year round.
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