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What is content marketing and how can I do it?
The concept of content marketing sounds quite flash doesn’t it? But it’s not that new or complicated. It’s actually a really traditional way to gain leads and customers but you hear more about it online now than anywhere else. Content marketing is an effective method of marketing in my eyes. But what is content marketing?
Content marketing in a nutshell
Content marketing is simply allowing your potential customers to try you out.
Content marketing is exactly as it sounds: Marketing with content. It’s content that you give away for free, and content that will show others what you’re all about and also how good you are at doing it all.
Back in the old days content marketing was simply giving away a product sample. Have you been offered free sprays of the latest perfume in a department store? That’s content marketing. Before you spend a fortune on Beyoncé’s latest fragrance you can have a little taster to see if it’s what you want it to be.
Often a bar will content market to you by giving you free sausages at the bar. A restaurant might send staff out on the streets with mini burgers or chips. You can do this online (not with food) by sharing yourself. Share your knowledge and your passion and help people with your content marketing… it makes them buy your perfume!
Online content marketing examples include:
Twitter: On Twitter you can do content marketing as well as network marketing. You can chat and share information all day on the 140 character-at-a-time network, but you can also content market yourself or business. Having a presence on Twitter that actively helps others with your trade or skills is a powerful way to market yourself as someone to chat to about your area of expertise.
Blogging is brilliant content marketing. With a blog you can share your knowledge, for free, to all and sundry – and it also gives you new words to freshen up your website too. Blogging allows you to share your views and knowledge, and position yourself as someone to go for help in your area. It gives people a little bit of you to decide whether they want the full manual and not just the chapter they’ve read.
Video is also content marketing. Look at the music industry and how it’s changed. Now everything about it (for me anyway) is downloads and YouTube. When you hear a song you like you’re bound to find it in seconds via the many great apps available, and instantly download it.
But how can video content market effectively for music artists?
Look at Justin Bieber. He completely stormed YouTube and is now a worldwide best-selling artist. He made nothing from YouTube (unless he had ads which I’m unsure of) but he successfully built an army of people ‘Beliebers’ who bought into him and then his dire music. Sorry, but it is.
The key to all content marketing (and there are a lot more than the few examples here) is that you give it away for FREE! Free? Ouch… all that effort for no return? Why would you do that? Well I don’t know about you but I wouldn’t buy a car without driving it, I wouldn’t buy an album without listening to some of it, and I now wouldn’t buy from or work with a business that I hadn’t learnt about beforehand.
“Content marketing allows people to buy into you before they buy from you”
Done well, with a strong strategy, content marketing can build a business – it certainly launched ours – but it does take time, skill and passion. If you lack any of those or need a little help getting started then talk to us; we live and breathe it!
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