VToday, very few companies rely solely on push marketing as a strategy to generate sales. Although the larger picture of inbound marketing is proving effective, marketers continue to debate the relative value of content marketing versus social media marketing. But here’s the spoiler: you need both.
Ten years ago, content marketing was perhaps seen as a passing fad. But those days are long gone. According to the Content Marketing Institute, 92% of content marketers say their organization views content as an asset.
In this article, the term content does not refer to advertising text that openly encourages the public to purchase its products and services. While this content is highly relevant in the later stages of the buyer’s journey, we focus on content that engages, educates, and even entertains potential customers.
Marketers often say content is king. Indeed, the importance of content as an essential part of your marketing strategy cannot be overstated.
The term content marketing is often used to refer to long educational content, and that is correct. However, long-form content should also be repurposed into shorter snippets and distributed through social media channels. Content marketing is not a proposition. Long-form and social media marketing each offer unique benefits to their format.
Let’s see how each can help your marketing efforts.
How Content Marketing Can Benefit Your Business
The benefits of content marketing are vast and both tangible and intangible. It’s also important to remember that content marketing takes time to show results. Too often, businesses abandon their content marketing efforts before realizing a return on investment. Even when campaigns To do show tangible results, it’s all too easy to overlook the intangible benefits that may not be measurable in terms of performance metrics. Rest assured, however, that content marketing efforts are worth the time and effort, and yield a myriad of benefits, such as:
Increase in web traffic
One of the major elements of content marketing is search engine optimization (SEO). When quality content is backed by a strong SEO strategy, it can help businesses achieve higher search engine rankings. This gives a brand maximum exposure to its relevant target audiences and compels engagement with potential customers. Design agencies that work on logos can engage audiences with insightful content on sports, cartoons, and gaming logos, while a fashion website can optimize its content for new trends and styles to greater visibility. In short, brands don’t need to be direct in their approach to attract people.
Build brand authority
Another benefit of having increased web traffic and getting to the top of a search engine is that it builds brand authority. Often, even before someone reads the content, the mere fact that a brand’s website has risen to the top of a popular search engine like Google indicates its authority on the subject.
Exposure in the digital realm engages the audience, connects them to your brand, and shows them that you have in-depth knowledge of your products and services.
“95% of B2B customers view content as a marker of trust when evaluating a business.”
Constantly speaking from a position of authority builds trust in a brand’s expertise. To be a leader in your field, you must not only sell but also teach.
Higher conversion rates
Instead of making a sales pitch, content marketing provides a good opportunity to first engage potential customers with great content and then issue a call to action. Establishing authority in your specific area of expertise makes it easier to get a higher conversion rate.
“For as many as 71% of B2B industry professionals, buying decisions are influenced by reading a company blog at some point.”
With the effectiveness of email marketing in mind, brands should remember that content marketing is probably the best long-term strategy for list building. This would be the same list that powers direct marketing, such as email, paid advertising, and other outbound marketing strategies; a list built from content marketing is self-qualified as market-ready.
Many brands don’t have the kind of budget that allows them to compete with the marketing efforts of big corporations. Content marketing can be the great equalizer, giving startups an opportunity to get their name out there.
Additionally, since long-form content can help create meaningful conversations and engage audiences for a long time, the medium works great to build brand awareness. What does your brand represent? What is his mission ? How does it aim to provide a solution? These questions do not have simple answers; Long-form content marketing is the natural platform to tell your business story.
How Social Media Marketing Can Benefit Your Business
Search any leading company on the internet; there’s no way you won’t find them on popular social media platforms. Doing marketing without leveraging social media is like having the key to the doors of success while looking for hand tools to break in. Incorporating social media into your marketing mix is a must.
Even in B2B marketing, brands need to remember that their potential customers are still people. As such, they are going to use multiple online platforms to engage content. There are times when people are less inclined to consume long articles and more inclined to use social media. Marketing on these platforms can allow brands to connect with audiences on a more personal level.
It is unlikely that a user will visit your website every day. However, by having a social media presence, a brand can garner multiple touchpoints in a relatively short period of time. Above all, social media provides the means to create a community. Failure to build lasting relationships with current customers does nothing to encourage customer retention, the holy grail of marketing.
Strengthen your credibility
A strong social media presence gives some customers a quick way to respond to questions and complaints. This builds confidence that your support team is just a few mouse clicks away when needed. Responding in a timely and responsible manner helps your brand build credibility organically. Potential customers are often heavily influenced by the experiences of a brand’s existing customers, so responding positively to feedback goes a long way to not only gaining new customers, but also retaining existing customers.
In some cases, a potential sale can be ruined by negative reviews on the Internet. Failing to address and resolve customer issues can work like slow poison for your business. Conversely, underestimating the power of positive customer feedback on social media can be analogous to leaving money on the table.
Profitable and measurable marketing
Targeted social media ads allow businesses to reach their most relevant audiences. Additionally, social media marketing allows a brand to measure the success of a marketing campaign by presenting a set of unique KPIs that are simply impossible to measure with non-digital marketing. For example, YouTube analytics tell marketers how long users watched their video ads. If there is a drop in audience based on a specific location, marketers can use this information to research why the drop has occurred.
Marketing your brand successfully is a difficult task without considering what people are saying about your business. Thus, it is crucial to be aware of recurring patterns that highlight a problem in your products and services. For example, if you’ve launched a product and people are mentioning difficulty operating the device due to a missing instruction manual, you need to fix the problem before other people start talking about it. It often happens that customers do not bother to contact the company for minor inconvenience. Therefore, social listening shows your customers that you care and are actively working to resolve issues.
Become a thought leader
Remember what we said about educating people to become industry experts? Sharing similar content on social media to become a thought leader like Neil Patel, Gary Vaynerchuk, or Simon Sinek can help you put a face to your brand and build a more humanistic relationship with people. Following this strategy has allowed people to build a business based on the success of their personal brand.
Content marketing and social media marketing are two of the most effective marketing channels today, and it’s important to explore these avenues. Much of what we’ve discussed here doesn’t require a hefty budget, but rather a dedication to learning the different tactics and ways these marketing channels can benefit your business.