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The Beginner’s Guide to Content Marketing

The Beginner's Guide to Content Marketing

With online marketing making a big splash in the business world, there are a lot of new marketing techniques that have proven to be quite effective.

Content marketing is one of the more important online marketing strategies that businesses cannot ignore these days.

Content marketing refers to the process of using content as a tool to generate interest in your product/service.

The idea is to create quality content in a format that resonates with your audience, and compels them to check out what you have to offer them.

Content is the backbone of just about any marketing – online or offline. Even traditional marketing methods like television and newspaper ads rely on visual and textual content to draw the attention of the viewer/reader.

Online marketing relies even more heavily on content!


Benefits of Content Marketing

Benefits of Content Marketing

So how does content marketing benefit your business?

1. Builds Trust

When you create quality content that your audience can relate with, it helps build a rapport with them. When you address the pain points that your audience may have, and provides solutions through helpful content, your audience knows they can trust you.

As you keep generating good content on a consistent basis, your regular audience start considering you a trusted adviser in your niche and keep coming back for more.

2. Increases Traffic

Good content drastically increases the amount of traffic to your website. People will not be ignoring your business website anymore. As more people start clicking through to your website, your search engine rankings increase as well.

Content that is inspiring and helpful gets more shares as well. Whether it is shared through social media or word of mouth, people start flocking to your website, driving your inbound traffic stats off the charts.

3. Engages Visitors

One important aspect that a lot of businesses struggle with is user engagement. You want your potential customers to trust you enough to engage with you. Good content is a great catalyst for user engagement.

People who like an article you’ve written comment on it. A video might get shared a lot. Others start talking about it, and it build up engagement around your content piece.

4. Generates Conversions

One of the biggest advantages of content marketing is the increase in the conversion rate. No longer do you have to draft out exhausting sales pitches. When you have the right product/service and great content to complement it, prospective clients come to you, rather than you going behind them.

Your content encourages the audience to start enquiring about your business right away. You start getting more queries, more subscriptions and more sales right on your website. People can’t wait to see what you have to offer them.


Content Marketing Success Story

Plan Your Kerala TripI’ve been the Inbound Marketing and Creative Head for Paradise Holidays, a Kerala based tour operator, for more than two years now. One of the best pieces of content we created for their blog was this article: Plan Your Kerala Tour: A Step by Step Guide.

I did a bit of on-page and off-page search engine optimization for the article and got it up to the first page of online search results, where it still remains today!

If you click through and glance through the article, you’ll find that I’ve internally linked to a various other blog articles in order to reduce the bounce rate. This also played a big part in increasing the SEO ranking of this post.

This article is a great example of how content marketing is beneficial to businesses. It has:

  • Brought in tons of website traffic
  • Garnered over 150 comments from visitors
  • Increased the number of queries generated from this page

I have to admit, it did take a lot of time and effort for us to do the initial research, create the content and share it in places where it will be seen. But it was well worth it!

This piece of evergreen content has become a pivotal page on the website, bringing in new business and nurturing existing connections.


Types of Content

Let’s move onto the different types of content you can create for your business.

1. Blog Articles

A blog article is by far the most common type of content found online. Every business website should have a wide repertoire of blog posts that the audience will find helpful.

Picmonkey Blog Post

I wrote an article curating 50+ PicMonkey resources last year that has over 7000 social shares till date. Not only did it bring me traffic, it also gained visibility through other sites I had linked to inside the article.

Articles can be written about just about any topic that falls within your business niche. The blog post format should typically be one of the following:

  • How-to articles
  • Step by step guides
  • Curated list of resources

Your written content needs to be substantial, with little fluff and lots of helpful information. It’s a bonus if the post is over 800 words as it will do well with search engines as well.

You can also bedazzle the article with relevant images, and include sub-headings and bullet points for easy reading. The best articles are those where the reader is attracted by the title, and drawn in to find out more through the opening paragraph.

Tools and Resources:

Here are some resources to help you write better blog articles.

2. eBooks

An eBook is typically a longer form of written content in the form of a short book that can be read online. An eBook can be anything from a collection of blog articles, to a whitepaper or report.

Internet Business Manifesto

Rich Schefren’s Internet Business Manifesto is a popular eBook that has been downloaded over a million times! It gave me a breakthrough in my business as well. This eBook has gained a lot of traction because it’s been linked to and shared by many popular websites.

eBooks do require more time and effort to put together, but they are more beneficial to the audience as all the information is in one place. Plus there’s the possibility that you can use it as a way to increase your mailing list.

Writing an eBook, whitepaper or report typically involves 3 broad steps:

Step 1: Identify the topic and perform extensive research
Step 2: Write the content and add required graphics
Step 3: Publish and promote

Simple eBooks containing 50 – 100 pages can be created in PDF formats and made available free of cost to subscribers. Keeping them free also allows you to promote it across various channels and get more visibility.

Tools and Resources:

Here are some resources to help you create eBooks.

3. Infographics

According to Wikepedia,

Information graphics or infographics are graphic visual representations of information, data or knowledge intended to present complex information quickly and clearly.

Infographics have become quite the rage these days, especially with them doing so well on Pinterest and being shared more often. If you have content that can be presented in extensive graphic form, an infographic is the way to go.

google in real time

Courtesy of BuddyLoans.com

This infographic was shared on Search Engine Journal and received over 900 social shares within a week!

Infographics help build authority, attract more backlinks and increase the number of social shares. A well-crafted infographic is sure to generate a lot of interest around your business.

Tools and Resources:

Here are some free tools to help you create awesome infographics.

4. Podcasts

Audio podcasts are doing the rounds with quite a few popular online personalities launching their own podcast shows. Many people listen to podcasts when they’re driving, exercising or working on chores.

Jeff Goins Podcast

Jeff Goins has a weekly podcast titled, The Portfolio Life where he helps listeners identify their calling and live it out. This podcast has become quite popular among authors, writers and entrepreneurs, and has received rave reviews on iTunes.

The advantage of audio podcasts, is that listeners can hear your voice and the intonation, which is missing in written text. If your audience prefers auditory communication, you can create a bunch of podcasts and launch your own show.

However, it’s important that:

  • Your podcasts stand out from the myriad others out there.
  • You have a definite message to share.
  • You are able to speak clearly and get your message across with clarity.

Tools and Resources:

Here are some free tools to help you create podcasts.

5. Videos

Videos are doing well online, thanks to YouTube, Vine, and Facebook. If your message is best shared through a video, go for it!

Pat Flynn's YouTube Channel

Pat Flynn’s Smart Passive Income YouTube Channel is a great example of the power of helpful videos online. This channel hosts videos mostly related to online business and making money online, with each video getting thousands of views on average.

The advantage of creating video content is that viewers can actually see what you’re doing and connect better with you.

Videos may include:

  • DIY videos, detailing the complete process of how something is done in real life.
  • Face to face videos, where you share about a particular topic.
  • Screencasts, where you explain how something is done online.

Tools and Resources:

Here are some free tools to help you create podcasts.

6. Webinars

A webinar or webscast is basically a web seminar – an online event hosted by an individual or business, and broadcast to audience members who can sign up for it and view it online. Webinars are advantageous as you can connect with your audience, and speak to them in real-time but at a much lower cost.

Michael Hyatt Webinar

Michael Hyatt recently hosted a webinar on blogging to gain interest in his membership site, Platform University. The free information provided in a webinar, gets the audience interested in what more the hosting business has to offer them.

When your audience members sign up for the webinar, they also provide you with their email IDs that can be used as leads for further marketing purposes.

Tools and Resources:

Here are some free tools to help you conduct webinars.

7. Slideshows

Slideshows are yet another form of content that might appeal to your target audience. A slideshow utilizes a combination of text and images to share useful information online.

Hubspot Slideshow

This slideshow by Hubspot showcases 29 marketing tips from industry experts in a fun format. It has been shared over 1500 times on social media and has surely gained a lot of exposure online.

You can create simple slideshows for DIY instructions, a collection of quotes/observations, or even a report with current statistics in your business niche. You can also repurpose existing content – articles, podcasts or videos, and create slideshows out of them.

Tools and Resources:

Here are some free tools to help you create slideshows.

8. Printables

A printable is any type of image, form, text or chart that can be printed out. You can create printables to go along with other content formats as well.

WAHM Manifesto

I created this WAHM Manifesto for my readers who were work at home moms. I was inspired to write these words, but rather than publish it as a simple blog post, I created a printable my readers could print out and hang in their workspace. Many readers loved it, and it has been shared and downloaded too many times to count!

You can create a printable for just about any content idea. Some examples of printables are:

  • Inspirational quotes
  • Worksheets
  • Reports
  • Planners

You can utilize the printables as bonus material for your articles, or even give them away to email subscribers.

Tools and Resources:

Here are some resources to help you create printables.

In conclusion, I’d like to say this… Remember to always keep the following points in mind when you’re creating your content:

  • Who you’re writing for?
  • What their problem is?
  • How your content can provide a solution?

We hope this article has helped you on the right track to start up content marketing for your business. We’d love to assist you in any way we can.

Contact us to find out how we can work together to set up an effective content marketing strategy for your business.

6 Comments

  1. This is a great article; I’m tagging it to come back and study some more.

    Reply
    • oh Bonnie..Thank you! So very glad to hear that!!

      Reply
  2. Your post is so interesting and informative. I got a lot of useful and significant information

    Reply
  3. Awesome sharing about a short guide of content marketing it is very worthy for beginners!!

    Reply
    • Thank you Jesi! Glad to hear that!

      Reply

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