It’s no secret that content marketing is now the focus of many businesses’ digital marketing strategies. 72% of marketers say that content marketing improves their engagement, but at the same time, we now have to compete with millions of other blogs, social media posts, YouTube videos, and even podcasts.
In short, while content marketing is definitely still effective, it is also much more saturated and competitive.
So, to have successful content marketing in 2020 and onward, we have to be creative and proactive. This is why in this article, we will discuss some actionable tips and tricks for a successful content marketing strategy.
Let us begin.
Before we begin discussing the content marketing hacks, let us first discuss the content marketing concept just to be sure that we are on the same page.
Why? Because it is a very common misconception that content marketing is solely about creating great content.
While it is 100% correct that the secret to successful content marketing is relevant, high-quality content, it is not the only thing you should do. Rather, content marketing should consist of three different aspects:
- Content creation: pretty obvious, the creation of high-quality, relevant content that is valuable for your target audience.
- Content promotion: no matter how good your content is, it won’t really bring any value unless there are people consuming the content. So, how you promote your content is an essential part of your content marketing strategy especially if you're a SaaS company.
- Content conversion: what is the objective of your content? After they read the content, so what? Optimal placement of CTA (call to action) and synergy with your other campaigns is very important.
So, when we discuss the tips and tricks below, keep in mind that they will cover these three aspects of content marketing strategy.
1. Implement Data-Driven Content marketing
Again, one of the most common misconceptions regarding content marketing is that it is only about publishing more and more blog posts. Many businesses and bloggers think that simply by publishing 30 blog posts a month, the blog will magically grow its number of readers.
Yes, it is possible if you are lucky, but more often than not, consistency in quantity and quality is not enough.
Instead, in today’s saturated digital marketing place, it’s important for marketers to know how they can measure the results of their efforts. To do this properly, it’s important to first define the objective of your content marketing. If, for example, the objective is to generate more leads, then you should measure the number of prospects generated by each content piece.
In today’s content marketing, we can generally divide the metrics into four:
- Content consumption metrics: like the number of readers, website traffic (via Google Analytics), open rates, and click-through-rates (on the SERP)
- Social sharing metrics: the number of shares on social media, retweets, likes/hearts, and other social engagement metrics.
- Lead generation metrics: metrics related to lead generation, like the number of converted leads
- Sales-related metrics: not always, but content can directly contribute to sales. Measured via conversion rate, customer acquisition costs, etc.
Make sure to consistently measure the performance of your content pieces to ensure that your resources and time are being used wisely.
2. Capture Your Audience’s Attention ASAP
Remember that you are competing with thousands and even millions of other content in capturing your audience’s attention. So, it’s important to capture their attention as soon as possible.
A typical decision-making span of a blog reader is only around 3 to 5 seconds. If they find something interesting within this period, then they will continue reading the post. If not, well, they can simply jump to other blogs, YouTube videos, and others. So, make sure to polish the first paragraph of your content, besides having an attractive headline.
3. Understand Your Marketing Funnel
Your content should be able to engage and deliver value to your audience at any stage of the marketing funnel (customer’s journey). For some content pieces, the objective might be to attract visitors to the website, but others can be used to convince customers to make their purchase and maintain customer retention.
In general, content marketing should cover four key marketing funnel stages:
- Awareness/outreach: attracting new customers to the website or platform
- Conversion: convincing customers to buy your product/service or to join your program (i.e. email newsletter)
- Research: comparison between your product and your competitors’, information regarding what you solve, etc.
- Retention: encouraging brand loyalty and maximize retention
While it’s true that content marketing is the most effective in the “top” of the funnel in attracting your audience to your platform, you should plan ahead your holistic content marketing strategy to tackle all these different stages of the marketing funnel.
4. Update Old Content Regularly
Google and the other search engines simply prefer content pieces that are fresh and up-to-date. So, ensuring that you include fresh information on your content and updating them regularly can significantly help in generating traffic to the content.
In general, you should:
- Include the year in the content’s heading/title. This will help Google understand when your content is recently updated
- Avoid excluding the year in the content’s URL so you don’t have to change the URL all the time (might affect your SEO)
- Have a clear schedule to revisit the content every few months or every year so you can add new information and keep it up-to-date.
5. Leverage and Repurpose Old Content
Creating new content can be expensive and time-consuming, but at the same time, the reality is that not all of our content pieces would succeed. So, by recycling old content, we can maintain the cost-effectiveness of our content marketing campaign.
An additional benefit of repurposing existing content is that we might be able to reach a new group of audience by shifting our content into another medium. For example, by transforming a blog post into a video or podcast, we can reach people who simply don’t like reading.
Last but not least, repurposing content can ensure our audience has more chances to see it. Even your most loyal followers might miss your content when they are busy, so by posting your content one more time in a different medium, you can have more chances in reaching them.
While the key to successful content marketing is the content quality itself, doesn’t mean we don’t need other strategies to ensure our content can reach as many people as possible. The 5 tips and tricks we have shared above are among the most effective in optimizing your content marketing campaign to achieve the best success.
It’s critical for content marketers to always monitor the performance of each content according to its objective, and adjust or repurpose the content as required.
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