Why Content Marketing? Tackling The Big Questions
Content marketing is an essential component in marketing and advertising systems for companies of all sizes. Marketers in the business-to-consumer (B2C) sector allocate an average of 22 percent of their marketing budget on content marketing. 37 percent of marketers expecting that amount to increase within 12 months. Ask any of these companies why content marketing is so important, and you might get a range of responses. It’s worth considering those answers carefully as you decide if pursuing a content marketing strategy is the right choice for your company.
Why Content Marketing?
If you commit to content marketing, there’s the potential to reap huge benefits. Here are seven of the top answers to the question, “Why content marketing?”
7 Reasons Why Content Marketing Is Important
The Failure of Traditional Advertising
In 1984, people saw an average of 2,000 advertisements every day. By 2014, that figure had risen to around 5,000, according to statistics from the Content Marketing Institute. That level of noise makes it very difficult for you to ensure an audience hears your brand message. These countless distractions mean every advertisement you run needs to be truly memorable if it’s going to make a mark. Gaining exposure may entail a much higher level of investment, which could stretch your marketing budget to the point of breaking. Even then you may not get the results you expect. Studies reveal 40 percent of consumers don’t trust social ads and scroll past them without reading.
The Increase in Ad Blockers
One of the side effects of the advertising overload online users are subject to every day is an increase in the use of ad blockers. Users employ ad blockers to control and enhance their online experience, resulting in a significant financial loss to advertisers. Ad blocking software runs on 615 million devices, accounting for 11 percent of the global internet population. Forecasts suggest losses from ad blocking in the region of $35 billion by 2020.
The Strength of Inbound Marketing
Content marketing forms a core element of an inbound marketing campaign that eschews traditional advertising methods in favor of focusing on creating content that potential customers actually want to see. Rather than paying to place advertisements in front of people, you create value-added articles that encourage those people to look for you. This is often far more cost-effective. It helps to ensure that more of the people who see your content are the people who are actually interested in it. It’s a proven method of acquiring sales leads, with those leads costing an average of 61 percent less than leads from outbound marketing.
Ranking well in the search engines is incredibly important for maintaining visibility and relevance for your brand. The two most important ranking factors in Google’s algorithm are content and links. Good quality content has a better chance of floating to the top. Furthermore, if you regularly update a blog including internal links and backlinks you’re making it easier for search engines to crawl your site and index content. Websites with blogs have 97 percent more indexed links and 434 percent more indexed pages.
Engaging an Audience
Audiences may enjoy a well-crafted or amusing advertisement, but they don’t get a chance to engage with it. Social media posts, blogs, and YouTube videos provide an opportunity for an exchange of ideas. Audiences are free to like and comment and engage directly with the content creator to ask questions. They can learn more about the subject or simply share what they like and don’t like. It’s a great way to get a deeper insight to what audiences expect from your brand and test new concepts. It also helps make customers feel like they’re part of a community. Engaged customers are more likely to continue doing business with you, and they’re more likely to recommend your brand.
Building a Reputation
Creating your own content is a good way to build your reputation. If your work is of an incredibly high standard, factually accurate, useful, and engaging then it’s going to attract a lot of attention. People are going to pay more attention to you in the future. Consistently popular articles build your reputation as a thought leader, marking you as someone to listen to. They improve your brand name, encourage sales, and help gain the respect of your peers.
The question really isn’t “Why content marketing?” The question is, “Why aren’t you already using content marketing?” Companies of all sizes use content marketing. Startups have the potential to engage with potential customers, building loyal audiences that help to spread brand awareness. Meanwhile larger companies in competitive markets have a chance to curb expenditure on advertising campaigns. They gain an edge over businesses that continue to use traditional forms of marketing. Simply put, content marketing works. Content Marketing boasts conversion rates that are six times higher than other methods and generating three times as many leads as outbound marketing. And because it works, your competition is probably already using it to get ahead of the game. Start developing your own marketing systems so you don’t fall behind.
Is Content Marketing Right For You?
Content marketing has the potential to benefit any business in numerous ways. You can write a company blog to improve SEO or a white paper post to develop a reputation as a thought leader. The biggest problem with content marketing is that it’s incredibly time consuming and requires a lot of skill to do well. Your brand has to do more than write a few articles and publish them. You need to develop a strategy, work to a schedule, produce regular content, work to a consistently high standard, and ensure the right people see your work. You can’t use content marketing half-heartedly, or you may cause more harm than good. If you lack the time, skills, or staff to meet the requirements of a rigorous content marketing strategy, consider employing freelancers for content creation, or employ a content marketing agency to do the heavy lifting for you.
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