Today, consumers expect educational, relevant content in promotional media and materials. Websites, blogs, social media platforms, and other tactics of the most successful companies satisfy this need to their customers and prospects. This content is sought out and appreciated as it models a more client-centered approach.
It’s a lot of work to provide high quality marketing content, especially on a continuing basis. But, there are a lot of reasons for you to invest the time, effort and dollars it takes.
It makes you a credible source. You have the news, the data, the guidance; and if it’s accurate, up to date and easy to understand, you become the source customers go to when they need help. They will be more likely to buy from you, relying on your expertise. You will stand out from your competitors. With content marketing you can show potential clients the depth of knowledge and understanding you have in your field.
Content makes buying decisions easier for the customer and builds confidence in your product by answering questions clients may be hesitant to ask, or questions they did not know they had. That makes the decision process easier for clients and faster sales for you.
Expertise builds trust and trust builds brand loyalty. Customers and potential customers will return, again and again, to your website, blog or YouTube Video for new and needed information.
Content Marketing Calendar
How do you get all of this fresh up to date content out on a regular basis while keeping your strategic goals in focus? With the multitude of outlets for content marketing and the constant flow of new information, the best way to ensure that you will be consistent in your delivery is to create a content marketing timeline or calendar. This can be similar in format to an editorial calendar for a magazine.
The calendar should be built around the strategic goals of your marketing campaign. Those goals should be in writing and understood by your marketing team. When you have done your preliminary research and know who your target audiences are and what media platforms and tactics you want to use, the next step is creating a year-long plan with monthly concepts, tasks and names of team members responsible for that material. This will keep everyone in your marketing department aware of what’s happening next and their roles in presenting it. The content can reflect specific, targeted “campaigns” or themes rather than separate documents or subjects. Content doesn’t have to be left up to the marketing team. Publishing a blog on operations or on a sale’s topic engages the rest of the organization as well.
Some of the topics you can cover in your monthly plan are:
- New industry perspectives or laws
- Updated product information
- New benefits of your product line
- Content not related to a specific aspect of your business.
- A list of exercise tips or a healthy recipe is valuable as well.
Ask your customers what they would like to hear about. For example: the latest statistical information on senior’s choices regarding home ownership versus or rentals, for real estate developers, new trends in preferred sports programs for gym membership companies or latest garden trends for landscapers.
In putting together your calendar, don’t forget the value of visuals. New images are important to not only give the site a contemporary look, but also to create interest. When there is not much new information available, new visuals alone can stimulate buyer interest. New images of products, spokespersons, customers, (with their permission) or locations, can be utilized to help keep your material fresh on an ongoing basis.
Content marketing done right, gives you a competitive edge and getting a year’s worth on a timeline will ensure that it gets out there consistently providing tremendous value to your customer base and your bottom line.