First Thoughts on Content Marketing
This is often one of the first questions asked by writers just entering the marketing world (or by interns who are attempting to learn everything properly). They’ve attempted to infer the meaning of the phrase on their own, but sooner or later everyone needs a definition for their job.
Let’s look at it with fresh, slightly uneducated eyes. It may be easier to create a preliminary definition, a jumping-off point, if it’s broken down a little more. Content seems to refer to the substance, the essential stuff that makes up writing. One definition of content is “the subject of a book or document.” For example, the content of this article is definitions and explanations. Marketing refers to a way to sell a product to potential customers and consumers. That’s not a bad starting point—now, what is content marketing?
What Is Content Marketing?
According to the Content Marketing Institute, “content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience.” Essentially, the preliminary definition wasn’t too far off. The most notable difference is that the Content Marketing Institute points out that content marketing is away to connect to customers and potential consumers without actually selling them anything. The biggest focuses are the connections with customers and the product that you, as a writer, are marketing. You’re giving suggestions and showing your customers what they could use your product for. It’s your job to teach your customers a little bit about the products you’re selling. By providing your potential customers with knowledge about your product, you’re creating more than just a customer and you’re acting like more than just a salesperson. Creating those connections with your customers, even if they’re not actual customers yet, are what bring people back.
Final Thoughts on Content Marketing
Whether you’re just getting into the field of content marketing or you’ve been in the field awhile, the most important thing to remember is that you are the person representing a company that has the opportunity to create a solid connection with not just potential customers, but with people. By focusing just on the products you’re attempting to sell, the customers will glance over and think nothing of it. If you choose a few specific products that tie together that could work for a certain event or a certain need, your customers are more likely to feel the connection. As a content writer, a good way to check to see if you’ve created a connection is to read your piece aloud—if it’s an easy read and has emotion to it, there’s a good chance you’re making a connection to someone. If you can read it and it sounds like a conversation, you’re building that connection even more. That’s the most important thing to work on-building a connection through your content writing.