Why use content as part of your marketing strategy?
When you’re thinking about marketing strategy, there’s one reason that stands out above all others to do content marketing. That’s scalable revenue growth.
There’s a lot of marketing alternatives available to any business, and all of them should drive revenue growth to some degree. BUT there’s no marketing alternative quite as scalable as content marketing.
With most marketing, your lead generation is directly connected to your spending. So if $100 = 1 lead, then $200 = 2 leads and $100,000 = 1,000 leads. This is what you’re facing when you think about display advertising, SEM, radio, and increasingly social media.
These traffic sources can be great for driving traffic and building awareness, but every time it drives someone to your business, you’re paying for it. It’s an expensive addiction that many small and medium businesses struggle to break.
Content flips the equation the other way round. You invest upfront, but your content can last as an effective traffic magnet for 5, 10 or 20 years.
The best part is that each additional visitor comes at zero cost.
Content is so scalable because you build it once, and then it continues to return over 5-10 years. There’s no incremental cost to go from 1,000 leads to 100,000 leads. Once the content is built, the marginal cost of leads is practically zero.
There’s other benefits from content. But none are as quantitative and compelling as the scalability of returns.
There’s four broader benefits of content marketing (over and above the scalability of returns):
Content keeps you front of mind with clients
- There have never been so many competing distractions for your clients attention. This makes it hard for your business to stay front of mind.
- By delivering more value, more frequently and you have significantly more chance of being in the right place at the right time. If you’re not staying in front of your clients with frequent content, your competitors will capture the ‘expert problem solver’ position of thought leadership.
- When your clients think about the specific solutions you provide, you can’t afford for them to think of anyone else but you.
Content helps you define the industry agenda
- Those who create content define the agenda. They’re the first to set the agenda of what needs to be discussed and what’s getting coverage.
- Do you want to be responsible for defining the agenda, or do you want your competitors to do it?
Content ensures that you can always be found
- When ranking websites, Google prioritises high-quality content over anything else. This dates back to the 2011 ‘Google Panda’ update when Google made changed their search algorithms. The outcome was that only high-quality, well-written, credible content would get the top spots in Google’s search rankings. (And the underhand tricks by scammy SEO companies would no longer work.)
- Here are some quotes from Google’s webmaster toolkit:
“The key to creating a great website is to create the best possible experience for your audience with original and high quality content.”
“If you write about how to train a dog, make sure your article provides more value or a different perspective than the numerous articles on the web on dog training.”
“Your site’s content should be unique… show your site’s credibility by using original research.”
- As a small or medium business, people may not know your company name – so getting onto the first couple of pages of Google is even more important. When someone searches for a word or term that you specialise in, you need to be there.
Content can be reused, and repurposed
- A great content plan has many opportunities for content repurposing. This means identifying many ways to leverage developed content time and time again. There are many opportunities to get content reused and requoted many times (without ever incurring duplicate content penalties). Things like Ebooks, videos, presentations, blogs, podcasts and social media.