Content marketing is a strategy that hinges on creating, publishing and sharing content to well-targeted audiences with the objective of attracting new business and galvanising reputation.

The content involved could be anything from blogs, e-books, articles, infographics, emails, e-newsletters, guides, white papers and case studies through to video and posts to social platforms. Anything through which you can share your knowledge and expertise with your target audience can be classed as content marketing.

Any type of business or service provider can use content marketing to their advantage. Providing you select the right channels to share your content (the ones your audience uses), then you’ll find your messages and expertise will effectively get ‘out there’. And the benefits will soon start to roll in.

The benefits of content marketing are many.

Content marketing drives higher conversion rates

88 per cent of B2B marketers employ a content marketing strategy. As well as making it more straightforward to communicate with customers, content marketing provides a nicely sustainable way to keep a two-way discussion going. Content marketing also drives higher conversion rates. In fact, comparing those businesses that use content to those that don’t, conversion rates are almost six times higher.

Still unsure as to why you should be including content marketing in your strategy? Here are five good reasons that should convince you.

1.     Enhanced trust = increased sales

The more content you put out and that your target audience reads, the greater the authority you’ll command. People are always on the lookout for experts they can obtain advice from.

The more people read your insights, guidance and opinions, the more an expert in your field they will consider you. This will lead to enhanced trust, which will increase the likelihood of a purchase being made from the organisation you represent.

2.     Increased website traffic = boosted brand awareness

Research shows content marketing increases brand positivity. Providing you put your content out on the right channels to suit your audience, and do so in the right ways, you will see an uplift in website traffic through inbound links. Your published content will drive leads to your site and in turn generate awareness of your brand.

Remember, thought-leading content is likely to be shared. You’ve probably done it yourself: found something interesting or useful and shared it with your network. And sharing means a far more widespread reach for your content.

3.     Search engine optimisation = higher rankings

Content marketing plays a crucial role in organic search engine optimisation (SEO). Google is very much focused these days on quality, informative content that demonstrates authority and expertise. The search engine is intent on delivering relevant results to people’s search queries. So if you have something published on the web that fits the bill, as in useful rather than sales-focused, then there is every likelihood it will feature high in the search results. This means exposure for your brand and your website.

Your main aim with content is to stay up to date (focus on trends and current affairs); be informative (solve problems and answer questions) and relevant (related to the search keywords). Follow these rules and you’ll have the best chance possible to rank well in the search engines.

4.     Targeted content = greater conversions

Marketing is pointless unless it’s targeted. If it isn’t, you could spend far too much time fielding enquiries that lead to nothing. The great thing about content marketing is that the people who search for your content and read or watch it will be the very people who are genuinely interested in learning more and, ultimately, in buying from you.

Thought-leading content is a cert for being shared and reaching a wider audience.

Content Marketing: Where Next?

So that’s WHY you need to be factoring content marketing into your digital strategy. But what about HOW to do content marketing? Well that’s coming up in our next post in which we’re going to look more closely at the methods you can use to create great content for your content marketing strategy.

In the meantime, if you could use some direction on content marketing, why not talk to Figment?