Content, content, content…to an outsider, it might sound like digital marketing professionals are obsessed with content. In fact, it seems like every conversation about digital marketing will end up circling back to content.
At some point, you have to wonder: why is content so important?
Content Matters because it Helps People
Before we get into content, think about bad advertising. We’ve all heard people complain about annoying advertisements on the radio, on TV, or in pop-ups online. There’s nothing more obnoxious than someone getting in your face and trying to tell you all about their product, why you need it, and why you should buy it.
This type of advertising works only through sheer attrition, by reaching enough people that someone will listen. It doesn’t matter if the ad only has a conversion rate of 5%; when you’re reaching an audience of 1,000, that’s still 50 buyers. It’s crude and ineffective, giving the company a bad rep and doing little to boost sales.
This type of advertising is the complete opposite of content marketing. Bad advertising exists solely to sell sell sell, offering nothing of value for the audience. Content marketing exists to help people.
Because quality content offers an audience something valuable, people seek it out on their own. They pay attention, and they internalize the message. In short, content marketing works because it offers audiences something they already want.
The purpose of content marketing is to create something that helps people, something that makes a difference in their lives.
But How Does Content Help People?
When people have a problem, one of the first things they do is turn to Google. Maybe their electricity bill is a little high, and they’re looking for ways to save money on heating and cooling throughout the extreme temperatures of a Michigan summer or winter. They might Google “how can I save money on my heating bill.”
This is a perfect opportunity for an HVAC company to provide a solution to their problem. As they’re experts in heating and cooling, an HVAC company can put together a blog post detailing a list of practical, effective tips for reducing a heating bill to save money.
As a solution to the reader’s problem, it works because it’s an expert’s advice on an everyday problem and a guide to saving money. As advertising, it works because it’s a great way to draw visitors to a company’s website and demonstrate expertise in a given subject. Having read a blog post on your site, you’ve given a potential customer exposure to your brand and business, leaving them more likely to call you next time they are looking for a professional HVAC company.
Of course, this strategy can be applied to nearly any business. Data security firms can provide practical advice for businesses to protect themselves against ransomware. A human resources outsourcing company may discuss strategies for helping employees deal with changes at the workplace. The common thread with all of these examples is that the blog is helping the audience somehow. When people turn to Google to look for answers to their problems, your blog and your content is your platform for providing sound advice and leading them to your website.
What Makes for Valuable Content?
Once you’ve recognized the potential for content to help people and make a difference in their lives, the next step is to start thinking about how you can create valuable content.
Many people seem to think that content has to be very heady or flashy. They make the mistake of thinking that it needs to dazzle and impress audiences, or that their writing needs to be on par with Hemingway and Fitzgerald.
Wrong. When people come to your blog, they’re not looking for the Next Great American Novel; they’re looking for practical solutions to their problems. They want to know how to save money grocery shopping, how to unclog a drain, or how to find the best price on car insurance.
So to write great content, think about what expertise you have to offer and how you can make a difference in people’s lives. Think about your audience and how you can help them out, even if it seems minor or small.
Always try to remember the quote from the classic movie Field of Dreams: “If you build it, they will come.” When you write content that matters, people notice. Write quality content that offers to help people, and people will seek out your business rather than the other way around. Once you’ve helped them with a problem, they can’t help but think of your business in a positive light.
PGN Agency has an extensive track record of bringing our clients returns on their marketing and advertising campaigns. If you would like to learn how PGN can come up with creative marketing solutions to drive YOUR business’s growth, feel free to contact us directly at 248-414-6860. One of our friendly team members with help assess your needs, and put together a game plan for success!