A small business loan can be used for a variety of reasons, but one of the best ways to leverage this capital injection is through a strategic marketing campaign. However, customers are increasingly becoming more adverse to having companies market their goods to them. People fast forward through television commercials, install ad-blockers on their web browsers and subscribe to ad-free digital radio.
What’s a small business owner to do in light of this development? One way to bridge the growing disconnect between customers and a successful marketing campaign is by utilizing content marketing. Savvy owners know marketing is still a necessary component to their growth strategy; they just need to tailor the content to give the customer exactly what they want. Consider these three tips when crafting your content market strategy:
Nobody wants to scroll through 1,000 words of a sales pitch, or worse, just filler. Think of your content as if you were calling someone during dinner: What is so important that the person on the other end of the line should continue listening instead of going back to his or her meal? Provide data, statistics, market trends, thought leadership and even a small bit of humor or pop culture references to break up the tedium.
It doesn’t matter if you’re in a B2B or B2C business, you can still leverage content marketing to your advantage, as 67 percent of B2B buyers relied more on content for research purposes in 2015 than they did in 2014, according to DemandGen Report’s 2015 Content Preference Survey. Further, Content Marketing Institute working with MarketingProfs noted that 88 percent of North American B2B marketers utilize content marketing.
By giving customers something they find informative, perhaps even educational, you can lure them in and keep them coming back for more. Once you have these individuals honed in on your content, you have a much greater chance of converting that lead into a sale.
You don’t have to be the next Hemingway to produce quality content for your small business. However, you do need to be authentic. Although you’re ostensibly using your digital collateral as a channel to generate new leads and engage your current client base, if the content is not genuine, no one will want to view it, let alone read it. People have an excellent ability to detect fakes.
As noted by Markerly, your target audience will spend more time consuming your content if you can establish your authenticity and relevance. For instance, if you’re a retailer, you’ll want to post content that promotes your products or industry, not reviews of your favorite movies or copy and pasted news articles. Another way to showcase your authenticity is by incorporating real input from your target audience. Find out what they want and expect and you can more easily cater your content to specifically address their needs.
Digital content marketing is still a fairly new technique. As such, both marketers and search engines continue to tweak their approach to this lead-generating process. Not too long ago, the main goal of content marketing was to stuff each paragraph full of keywords associated with your business or industry and then rely on Google or Yahoo to use these words for a high spot on the search engine results page.
But that was years ago. Due to the rise in popularity of content marketing, search engine companies have tweaked the algorithms that rank pages on search engines to reward content with better quality over those that are merely keyword stuffing. As the content marketing sector matures and evolves, you should expect the major search engine companies to keep modifying their algorithms. This means you need to remain flexible to keep your content in line with best practices to maximize your marketing outreach.