Content marketing. This phrase has started to become more prevalent, especially within the sphere of inbound marketing. Luckily, both of these terms refer to, by and large, the same thing. While content marketing may be a subdivision of inbound, inbound marketing cannot exist without content.
Think of writing a blog or an ebook or creating a video with the only goal being to help inform and educate prospective customers about your technology and your field with the general goal of converting them to customers, but refraining from using any sales tactics whatsoever.
Content marketing 101 is that the farther an engaging piece of content spreads, the more likely it is that people will become interested in a product. While this may be a recent development in contrast to the long-established trends of outbound marketing, the world has become sufficiently advanced and customers have become savvy enough that traditional sales techniques only lead to diminishing returns.
It's a golden age for content marketing, as due to it being a largely digital practice, there are also a plethora of established tips and tricks for how a campaign can best succeed. With virtually no effort, the following three practices will immeasurably help your content marketing efforts.
Write for SEO
SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, refers to writing a piece of content with the express goal of having it rank as high as possible when someone uses a search engine to find information about a specific topic. This practice is slowly becoming outdated as search engines update their algorithms, but it can help get your content in front of the eyes of those who are most interested in it.
To write for SEO, you'll need a keyword – a word or phrase to naturally insert into your content at least a couple of times so that it can be picked up by search engines. It's important to note that SEO only affects content that is on the live web, and any non-text content (including downloadable content or PDFs) will not affect a page's ranking.
Leverage unique social media channels
Social media is an excellent way to get your content in front of as many eyes as possible, due to the way the algorithms of the various networks are designed. For example, the more engagements a post has on Facebook, the more likely it is to appear in the newsfeeds of people who have liked a page, or know someone who has engaged with the content.
Similarly, the more people that retweet content, the more people will see it. Twitter is a bit of a harder sell because it doesn't notify others of content interactions in the way that Facebook does, but content generally has a much farther organic reach.
Of course, there is no one-size-fits-all approach and what may work for one social network may not work for another. In one of his posts, Benji Hyam details how he managed to achieve trending status on Medium and got over 10,000 views on a piece of content in only four days. Much of his success was dependent on playing by the established rules of the network.
Use CTAs to drive conversions
CTAs, or calls to action, are one of the most important things to include in any piece of content because they provide the reader direction for what the author hopes they will do next. Much in the way many posts here on the SimplyCast blog have a link to our free trial, every piece of content should have a clear CTA, whether that's a newsletter sign-up button or a few lines asking a reader to check out a website.
By distilling the overall goal of the content into a single unobtrusive action, the author gives the reader the opportunity to continue the conversation on their own time and terms, an implicit relationship-builder where there is no pressure and the choice is entirely up to the reader.
As opposed to spending money where time is a limited resource, inbound marketing is perfect for those who find themselves in the opposite scenario, and the ability to track the performance of their campaigns instead of hoping that the right person will see it at the right time allows for low-risk experimentation, the refining of processes, and the doubling-down of practices that produce results.
SimplyCast's Hands-Free service will put content marketing principles to work for you, coupled with the company's revolutionary marketing automation platform, in order for you to effectively advertise your business over a variety of channels. To learn more about the service, visit our Hands-Free page.