With the enormous amount of time spent online on searching for information and connecting to social networks, content marketing is something marketers around the world have become increasingly interested in. In fact, 90% of marketers think content marketing will become more important over the next year, according to a report from Econsultancy & Outbrain, yet only 38 % have a content marketing strategy in place.
Content is the voice of your brand
As the algorithms of Google’s PageRank and Facebook’s Edgerank are trying to provide users with the highest quality results, brands are paying increasingly more attention to how content can help achieve marketing goals. This has put an emphasis on the importance of quality content within digital marketing. Chief Operating Officer at Outbrain, David Sasson, explains:
“As we head into 2013, the ability for brands to connect directly with consumers has never been easier. By using digital content to better connect with your audience, you’re creating affinity and brand awareness in a meaningful and valuable way.”
Content is what expresses the voice of your brand and it’s therefore important to invest in making great content in order to make your brand succeed in today’s competitive digital landscape.
Creation and curation form the core of content development
360i just released a very useful report drawing out the key elements of content marketing. One of the most important things to draw from the report, in my opinion, is that a good content marketing strategy takes into account both low and high-investment content. This means that your content can extend from clever status updates, simple photos and GIFs to web series and other forms of premium branded content. What’s important is not just the dimensions of your content; it’s rather more about creating meaningful content that adds value to your target group. Here are the key takeaways from the report:
- Digital branded content is a new animal. Branded content is no longer just about Print, TV, Radio and Out of Home. Today’s digital branded content drives conversations, promotes sharing and connects with consumers in a new way.
- Content development combines creation and curation. As a result of the ever-changing digital landscape, consumers are taking a more active role in creating, curating and sharing content. Paying attention to what your fans share and curate will help your brand produce content itself – just think of Oreo’s Daily Twist campaign. Try to leverage consumers to create or co-create content on your behalf by creating sharable content that gives people the opportunity to co-create and distribute your content as part of their online identity. It’s especially valuable for your brand to reach ‘influencers’, the celebrities of the social network. Your brand can also curate content to ‘borrow’ cultural content to show your expertise through others. Understanding your audience is critical to successful content curation, and you must therefore make sure you have set up listening tools.
- The buck doesn’t stop with creation. Determine where to place the content and how to ensure that the right people see it. Look into paid, owned and earned media to distribute your content and achieve share of voice. Optimise your content and implement changes based on insights on how the content is performing or replicate content that performs well. This is a difficult challenge that requires collaboration between strategists, content creators and community managers. It requires monitoring of conversations about your brand and measuring relevant metrics.
Putting a lot of effort into creating quality content is imperative for brands to connect in a meaningful way with their audiences. Have you determined a content marketing strategy?