The first thing that employees just getting familiar with sales and marketing should grasp is the difference between traditional (outbound) marketing and the newer forms of inbound marketing. Traditional marketing took place over mediums like television and radio; this kind of marketing usually involved buying a time slot. Once the advertisement went out in that time slot, your job as a marketer was essentially complete.
Content Marketing is the Engine for Inbound Marketing
Newer forms of marketing are called inbound marketing. This kind of marketing relies on content marketing to get your message across on search engines, social media, your blog, and email newsletters. Inbound marketing is also cost efficient for two reasons – you’re letting the customers come to you by creating engaging content and, secondly, you leave the content up for everyone to see. This is in stark contrast to outbound marketing.
The basic idea behind content marketing is that you’re going to be creating content that, in turn, stirs up attention and generates leads for your company. Expanding the number of leads that are drawn to your company, and who might hopefully make a purchase some day, greatly expands your customer base. Content marketing is also geared around the idea that, by generating content that hits customers at the right stage of the buyer’s journey, you can also increase your company’s online sales and brand awareness among general consumers.
A lot of people are also attracted to content marketing because it’s an incredibly diverse field. You can create videos, blog posts, whitepapers, e-books, advertisements, and social media posts and deliver that content across a variety of mediums to garner more customers. The only real limitation is your imagination. That said, content marketing is inherently measurable in real time against your marketing team’s key performance indicators: another advantage over outbound marketing.
Content Marketing is Measurable in Real Time
The beauty of content marketing is that it allows you to A/B test all kinds of ideas (e.g., different websites or different mediums for content delivery) to see which ones are actually increasing your leads and conversions. The key thing to remember if you’re trying to explain content marketing to your staff is that the goals that you set need to be measurable and specific.
What do those two words mean? A goal that’s measurable would look like this: This piece of marketing should increase my web traffic by 10% in the first six months and social media subscribers by 25% in the next year. The more specific that you can be with your goals, the easier those goals are to measure. And the easier that a goal is to measure, the easier time you’ll have improving on what’s working well and changing what isn’t working to improve your visitors, subscribers, and leads.
In the same way that portfolio management software centralizes your management processes and makes them easier to understand, customer relationship management software can also be an invaluable tool for managers. CRM software allows you to track how well all of your marketing is going and tailor specific messages to customers.
Your goals should be centered around the idea that content marketing can improve your sales and generate more leads. More than that, content marketing can help foster brand awareness and solidify more customer loyalty among customers who have already decided to purchase from your company over the competition. Remember: Make your goals measurable, and the more specific, the better.
Promote Your Content Everywhere
Creating the content is only half of the marketing battle. You’re really after more views. To get there, make sure that your website is search engine optimized and that you’re building and disseminating the kind of content on social media that garners attention and gets passed around. The goal is having content that gets commented on and boosts your brand awareness.