If you want to connect with your audience and make them fall in love with your brand, you can achieve this in a non-intrusive way, thanks to content marketing. By creating a winning strategy, you will reach your desired audience with valuable content.
- Content marketing focuses on creating valuable content for users, defined by its usefulness and attractiveness.
- By creating content, brands improve the perception that their potential customers have about them and their products.
- The focus of a content strategy is its audience, and therefore it is designed from the customer’s empathy map.
5 essential content marketing lessons
Content marketing is much more than writing blogs or creating creatives for social networks. It involves many previous tasks, such as market research or optimization for different formats and channels.
With the following 5 lessons, you can start creating valuable content that you can distribute organically. And thanks to them, your potential customers will be the ones to establish contact with your brand.
1. What is content marketing?
The definition that Eva Sanagustín gives us is the following. “Offering interesting and useful content to your customers and potential customers to get closer to them instead of shouting at them to buy your products or services (1).”
Content strategies are part of what we know as Inbound Marketing or attraction marketing. And the essence of it is to ensure that consumers are the ones who establish contact with our brand and not the other way around.
2. Content marketing formats
There is a multitude of different content formats, from the text of your website to the images and videos of your social networks. In other words, content covers everything and has to be created under our brand image or branding.
So that you can choose the type of format that best suits your objectives, we have prepared a list of the most important ones:
Infographics synthesize in a single page the keys to a complex subject, thanks to the combination of graphic elements and written explanation. The graphic part should be more relevant than the written part, making it easier for us to understand it without having to read the whole thing.
To make our infographics work, they must be memorable. For this reason, we must place greater emphasis on the graphic part, which must be in line with our tone of communication.
In the blog we must take special care of the type of content we write, maintaining coherence and working on our SEO. In this way, we will be able to create valuable content that the user will be able to find in their searches.
If we create a corporate blog, we will be able to build authority in the network, standing out as specialists in our sector. In addition, we will be able to attract traffic to other parts of our website, generating conversions in the long term.
An e-book or electronic book is a digital file adapted for use in an electronic book reader. Although, we usually refer to e-books as any downloadable text file with high-value content.
With an e-book, we can make reliable and very useful information directly accessible to our audience. Thanks to this lead magnet, we will attract users, receiving their contact information in exchange for accessing this content.
Podcasts are having a great consumption boom in Spain that we can take advantage of. Already 4 out of 10 Internet users are podcast consumers, from platforms such as Youtube (30%), Spotify (26%) or Ivoox (19%) (2).
Having a podcast helps us to humanize our brand, making it more accessible to the public. And on the other hand, it helps us establish ourselves as an authority figure in our sector. Thanks to these audio files, we can make accessible more extensive content that we deal with in other written formats. For example, we can use them to make educational content or interviews with relevant figures in our industry.
Video formats have a great capacity to attract users and are easy to consume. Therefore, it is not surprising that the average global video consumption on TikTok and YouTube is more than 23 hours (3).
Each platform has slightly different video formats. Either by the time, from 30 seconds to 30 minutes, or the recording format, in 16:9 or vertical position. For this reason, before recording, we will have to choose well to which platform we are going to adapt them.
In addition to paying attention to image and audio quality, we must make our content accessible to all types of users. For example, by adding subtitles we will be highlighting relevant information while also adapting the video to deaf people.
The webinar allows us to conduct video training sessions for our users online. Thanks to these sessions, we can increase the conversion rate of our customers by up to 20%.
With the webinar, we can generate confidence in the user, helping us with the live conversation through the chat. Or even, solving their doubts live if our audience is small and the time of the session allows it.
A newsletter is an email addressed to our users with a periodic frequency and theme adapted to them. This adaptation is mainly based on the phase of the sales funnel in which they are.
With the newsletter, we can invite the recipient to take action to go to another site to see the full content. Thanks to this, we will be able to guide them to our website, either to read the blog or the features of a product.
3. The different content distribution channels
Within digital media, we have several spaces to share content. And depending on the role we have in each channel, we talk about owned channels, earned channels and paid channels.
Content in owned channels
Our main own channel is the web, where we will create a long-term relationship with our consumers. For this reason, it is important that we take care of all its content, from the blog to the copy of all its sections.
The second own channel is our email marketing distribution. Using our newsletters, we can share the rest of the content and connect with the different channels.
Our social media profiles are also our own channels. Through them, we can communicate directly and bi-directionally with our consumers. For example, collecting their comments and impressions about our content.
Content in earned channels
Earned channels are those media and networks that echo what is happening around our brand. The content generated includes comments and opinions of our customers. And also all the content generated by them about our brand.
It is in the earned channels where awareness of our brand is generated. For this reason, it is important to monitor the dissemination of our content and those generated by users. Taking advantage of its virality and positive reactions.
Content in paid channels
These are all those media in which we can advertise online directly or indirectly. For example, SEM ads, display ads on entertainment and information websites, sponsored content on social networks, etc.
It is important to use them when we need to amplify our message. For example, if we are starting out and lack sufficient followers on social networks, we can reach a larger audience with ads. In addition, thanks to segmentation, we will be able to reach the audiences that are of most interest to us for each campaign.
4. How to create a content marketing strategy
To create a content strategy, we need the same preparation prior to any marketing campaign. However, we will put the customer or user at the center, designing our content from the consumer’s empathy.
Set SMART objectives
The term SMART is an acronym for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely.
In other words, our objectives must be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound:
- S – Specific: It has to be very concrete and relate in a concrete way to the KPIs that measure the results of our strategy.
- M – Measurable: It must be measurable in a quantitative way, through performance metrics.
- A – Achievable: It must be a realistic objective, capable of being achieved with the resources available to create our strategy.
- R – Relevant: The achievement of the objective must reflect a significant change in our business goals.
- T – Time-bound: We must establish a period of time in which we want to reach our objective.
The most common objectives we will pursue with our content strategy are:
- Attract qualified traffic.
- Generate authority or brand recall.
- Build consumer loyalty.
- Nurture our relationship with the audience or engagement.
- Capture new leads.
Define your KPIs
The Key Performance Indicators are the performance indicators of our content strategy. In other words, they are the variables with which to measure and quantify the achievement of our SMART objectives.
The most frequent ones related to our objectives will be:
|Social Engagement||Like, Share, Share, Save, Send, Mention|
|Conversion||Traffic Volume, Lead Volume, Cost Per Acquisition|
|Brand recall||CTR, VTR, Interaction Ratio, Quality of visits (bounce rate, average time)|
|Qualified traffic||Traffic volume, Session time, No. of pages visited|
Choosing content format types
We will think about what our target audience wants to see by answering the following questions:
- What does the audience need from our brand?
- What challenges can we help them overcome?
- Why should they choose our products or services?
- How can we help them achieve their goals?
Finally, we will look for the channels where our target audience is located, answering to:
- What does our audience listen to?
- What does our audience see?
This way we will know the channels where they spend the most time, searching and comparing information about our brand, products and of competition. Consequently, we will create a detailed profile of their preferred channels and what they want to find in them.
Although we treat our social media profiles as our own channels, they should always be secondary to our website. Therefore, when we are going to select our channels, we must follow the following order:
First, we will work on creating content for our website and our blog. Then, we will choose the social networks where we will address our audience, and we will adapt our content to them. And finally, we will amplify the distribution of these contents in the most appropriate paid channels.
Establish a budget
To establish our budget, we must assess three elements: the content formats to be created, the distribution channels and our work team. Then answer the following questions:
- What software or technology do I need to create my content?
- Do I need new photos and videos, or can I use existing files?
- Can I do it all with my own staff, or do I need to hire outside specialists?
- Do I need props, lighting or audio elements to create new materials?
- Do I need to hire campaigns on paid channels?
- How long will it take me to create and edit my content?
Create your structure and calendar
Once the channels and formats of our content have been chosen, it can have different forms of communication. For example, it can be informative, inspirational or promotional. And we will also divide it by themes in each channel.
That is to say, in our social media profiles, we will divide the content into content lines and each line into content territories.
On the other hand, we must establish a calendar for the publication of content. Taking into account two factors: First, the different promotions of our brand that will have to be communicated with our content, and the holidays that affect us. And second, the best days and times to publish on each social network.
Content creation must be constant and open to new ideas, taking advantage of current trends to adapt them to our content. In this way, we will connect better with our audience by entering into conversations about daily and current issues.
To find these trends, we can do it in several ways. One way is by being active users of the social networks used by our audience. To actively listen and find out what concerns and inspires them. And second, to anticipate their desires, we will have to study upcoming trends. Researching possible social and consumer changes.
To make our content publishing more efficient, we can automate this task. Thanks to content managers such as Hubspot, we can simultaneously publish our content on several social networks. In addition, we can automate the publication of articles on the blog, and even the sending of newsletters.
Analysis of results
When it comes to analyzing our results, we will use our list of KPIs, making reports of the contents that have worked best in each channel. We will assess whether we have achieved our SMART objectives and what changes we can make in the next content campaign.
In our reports, in addition to including quantitative values, such as the number of visits or leads, we will also have to make a qualitative assessment, based on our active listening to users. It is not just a matter of having comments or reactions, but of reading them and drawing conclusions. In this way, we will be able to check if our content is really liked and useful.
5. The best resources for content marketing
To get you started creating content, we have selected a series of useful resources that you can use for free:
- Trello: Online dashboard to plan and organize your content strategy. (See other best project management software)
- Canva: Online App tool to create all kinds of visual content and free image bank. (See other best presentation software)
- CapCut: Online tool and App for free video post-production.
- Google Trends: Google query website to find out which search terms are trending over a period of time.
- Ubersuggest: Online tool to discover new keywords and their metrics. (See other best SEO software)
- WGSN: Reference website on global trend studies.
- Hubspot: Online Inbound Marketing management platform, and management of all types of content. (See other best marketing automation software)
- Mailchimp: Integrated platform for managing email marketing campaigns. (See other best email marketing software)
- Google Analytics: Data analysis website offered by Google to know the metrics of a website. (See other best web analytics software)
As a result of the use of content marketing, we will get our potential consumers to come in contact with our brand and recognize it.
In this way, we will impact them in a positive way thanks to the content of value provided. Finally, we will open the way to a specific commercial proposal adapted to each of them.
1. Sanagustin E. Content marketing: Strategies to attract customers to your company. Eva Sanagustin Fernandez; 2020. [cited October 3, 2022]
2. Amoedo A. Podcast listening grows among Spanish Internet users [Internet]. Digitalnewsreport.es. [cited October 3, 2022]
3. Kemp S. TikTok’s ad audience reaches 1.002 million! (And other shocking stats) [Internet]. Social Media Marketing & Management Dashboard. 2022 [cited October 3, 2022]