Content marketing is a majorly awesome tool for your business. So I’m talking about the power of content marketing, how to use it in your business, and why it’s so important to the longevity of your brand!
The Power of Content Marketing
Want to listen to the podcast version of this post? I’ve got you covered!
I am on a major content marketing role today – mostly because I recorded my episode on SEO right before this (don’t forget to grab my totally free SEO Guide above!). But it’s because it’s amazing!
What is content marketing?
Content marketing is creating content that then sells your product or grows your brand in some way.
There are several different pathways in content marketing! It could be that your content marketing is search-driven. Then the people finding you via search join your email list, and from your email list, you nurture and then sell to them when the time comes.
Maybe they find you via search, sign up to your email list and get dropped into a funnel that sells to them.
They could come in through search and join your ecosystem somewhere else, like on Instagram, where you would later sell to them.
Maybe they find you via search, land on something that’s immediately helpful and then get sold into a small offer funnel.
In addition to all of those “coming in through search” situations, you could ALSO have people coming in through social media content. That can do any of those things I mentioned above as well.
I still think search-driven content marketing is the best option here, but social media is also an option.
Why search-driven content marketing is better than social media
Recency vs. Long-Term
Most social media platforms operate on an algorithm where recency is a MAJOR player. For example, the Instagram algorithm massively favors recent content. They won’t show people reels or posts from eons ago. (Reels have a longer reach than posts do, but it still isn’t forever.)
On the other hand, content optimized for search engines (like blog posts, YouTube videos, or sort of podcasts) can work for you for YEARS. I have blog posts, YouTube videos and even podcasts from YEARS ago that send thousands of people into my ecosystem every month. My most popular blog post right now is one from February – five months ago.
Content optimized for search can work for you much longer than social media content can. And the longer the shelf-life of something that can grow your brand and make sales, the better!
Discoverability is the other massive difference between search-driven and social media content marketing. With search-driven content, you can “hack” your way to being discovered (which I explain all about in this SEO Guide!).
Social media is way less search driven and more intrusive. With search-driven content, someone is searching for something specific and then finding you. That means you’re catching someone at the point of wanting your thing! Social media is a more “in your face” piece of content. Your posts are just showing up and someone may or may not have been looking for what you offer.
Start out with just ONE SEO-oriented platform and ONE social platform
I tell people that they need to focus on one social media platform, and they always say: “but you focus on Instagram and YouTube.”
Well, YouTube isn’t a social media platform. It’s a search engine that I use for content marketing purposes. So YouTube, blogging, or podcasting with an accompanying blog post all qualify as search-driven content. And you need to have one of those.
On top of that, you need to have social media. JUST ONE. You don’t need them all (ha). That doesn’t mean you can’t have a Facebook page and just filter your Instagram content there, but only focus on ONE.
Don’t incorporate another platform until you have one running on autopilot.
Every business should take advantage of the power of content marketing
That’s right – EVERY SINGLE BUSINESS.
So every business should have ONE search-driven platform they’re consistently creating content for, and ONE social media platform that they’re using consistently.
Product-based business, service-based business, information-based businesses… CAN ALL USE IT!
I will say – if you’re a location-based business, then you should and can still use content marketing. But the strategy is a bit different than what I’d tell someone who can sell nationwide.
Other than that, content marketing for each type of business doesn’t look that different.
You just have to determine:
- WHO you’re talking to – meaning who is your ideal customer?
- WHAT problem are they struggling with?
- HOW can you help them solve that problem and get them into your ecosystem to continue helping them?
Once you figure those three things out, the power of content marketing becomes clear. You need to determine what those people with that problem are searching for… And then create content that solves that problem for them.
You have to know what your ideal client is struggling with to know what to create content about, whether that’s search driven or on social media.
It needs to be specific. Here’s an example.
- WHO – Beginner female entrepreneurs who are starting a service-based business
- WHAT – They don’t know how to market themselves. They don’t know how to send contracts and invoices. They don’t know what to put on their website, or how to create one.
See how getting specific helps? All of those “whats” are great pieces of content for me to create to solve those problems. Your content is the how! And I can use SEO strategies to figure out the best keywords for me to use so that I can rank in search. You can extend that “how” into paid offerings later on, too.
Content Marketing is a LONG game
You can’t create content today and see its benefits tomorrow. The power of content marketing lies in that it’s a long game. On the plus side, that means your content will still work for you years from now. But that also means it will take some time to see results.
That means your content marketing can’t be a super difficult thing for you to do, or you won’t stick with it. Have systems and schedules in place so that you can stay consistent. Because (as with most things online), consistency is KEY.
There are 2 bridges in our business that lead to money
First, there’s the bridge that you have to build – from your ideal client struggling to having their question answered. But then there’s a secondary bridge you have to build, from the client having more questions they need answered to actually purchasing your program/service/product.
The content that you create will build those two bridges!
You might make content for the person in the beginning stages of that bridge. Then, for the secondary person. Either way, you have to bridge that gap for them between where they are now and where you need them to be to make a purchase.
If you’re a location-specific business…
Y’all know I live in a VERY small town (and a secluded one at that). Because of that, we don’t have a massive amount of people who live or visit here, although we do have a big tourism industry for the size of the area. Which means we also don’t have a lot of search engine searches.
Imagine you’re looking for a bounce house. If you looked at how many people were searching for that in Lexington, Kentucky versus in my area, you would see a CRAZY difference. The Lexington searches would be exponentially higher.
If you want to use the power of content marketing as a location-based business, you want to create content that is SPECIFIC to your area. So if you’re a bouncy house rental company in Lexington, Kentucky, you want to create content that gets you found for “bouncy house rental Lexington Kentucky,” not just “bouncy house rental.” Why? Because your ideal customer (and the only one you can actually help) needs to be in Lexington.
You could also expand that reach. Go back to who are the people searching for “bounce house Lexington Kentucky?” Maybe they’re moms planning birthday parties – then you could create content about that specific to your local area.
If you’re location-specific in a smaller area…
Then you should definitely implement the strategy above! But you also need to take it a step further. You’ll need to widen your scope and create content about the local area in GENERAL.
If I’m a bouncy house rental company in my local area, of course I would do content about “bouncy house rental in my county” or even surrounding counties. And I would broaden it out, just like in Lexington, to content that mom’s would enjoy.
But if you added up all the searches for that type of content here, it would be a TINY amount. So you have to think bigger.
You would focus your content strategy on the county or town as a whole. And you’ll have to be okay going broad to get the narrow people. I might create content about where kids eat free locally, things to do when you visit this area, or where to canoe, for example.
Sure, a random dude might visit my site who likely won’t be the one deciding to buy their kid a bouncy house for their birthday. But at least I’m getting traffic to my site so I’m able to rank better for the search terms that will help me sell.
Content Marketing is basically unlimited access to your people!
The power of content marketing is that it grows your brand and sells for you. That’s HUGE! If you have to constantly rely on either yourself or your advertising dollars to sell your things, you’re limited. You’re limited to your time and money constraints.
Content marketing? It’s free, baby! And it works for you around the clock so you don’t have to.
It does the work to move your ideal people into an avenue where you can sell to them – and you don’t have to manage it every second.
If someone is searching for something at 2 AM and I had to be awake and able to help them… it wouldn’t happen. And there are tons of opportunities in the back-and-forth for that lead to drop off.
If he searches at 2 AM and I have a YouTube video on that topic, he can watch it right away. And if I mention a free download I have in the video, then BAM – by 6 AM, he’s going to have his stuff figured out. I was helping him in my sleep. And now, when I launch something, he’s more likely to purchase from me because he’s on my email list and I helped him the first time.
The power of content marketing is that it works FOR YOU.
Content lives for SO LONG
I still get views on videos I put out in 2016. People still opt-in to Trello Board templates I put out in 2017. And people look at blog posts I wrote in 2018. You get the picture.
Content that you make for SEO purposes will live SO MUCH LONGER than social media content, and has the potential to reach even more people.
If I stopped everything I was doing and didn’t want to grow my income anymore, I could ride out my current income for 3 or 4 years thanks to the power of content marketing. No joke.
If something were to happen to me, my family would still be getting money based on the work I’ve done. And I’m incredibly grateful that I’ve built a business based on content marketing for that reason.
Not to mention you can do this with affiliate relationships, too. There’s another way that you can make money via content marketing.
Content is a major attraction tool for your people
If you’re putting out the right content, then you will attract the right people. (It’s totally possible to attract the wrong people, too.)
So, the power of content marketing? It’ll find your people, work while you’re asleep, last forever, and it’s TOTALLY unlimited.