You’ve no doubt heard the internet adage “content is king,” but have you really taken it to heart?
If your online marketing efforts are limited to a static website and a Facebook page, you may as well be advertising your business on a sandwich board for all the good it’s doing you.
Here are few reasons why your small business needs a content marketing strategy.
1. People don’t trust traditional advertising. The days of attracting customers solely through display advertising and marketing messages are over. According to a report by market research firm Nielsen, consumer trust in traditional advertising has taken a nosedive. However, the report also reveals that “nearly six in 10 global online consumers (58 percent) trust messages found on company websites and half trust email messages that they signed up to receive.” A strong content strategy taps right into those receptive consumers.
2. Content boosts your SEO. The current search ecosystem no longer rewards keyword-stuffed websites and other web spam. And Matt Cutts, Google’s top expert on the subject, has repeatedly said that Google rankings hinge on quality content. As search engines get more sophisticated at ferreting out the best information for users, the more critical it will be for you to produce fresh, relevant, authoritative, and unique content to rank highly in search engine results pages.
3. Content resonates on social media. A 2011 AOL study shows that 27 million pieces of online content are shared daily in the United States, and that number has likely grown since then. Furthermore, the study says that 60 percent of those shared messages specifically mentioned a brand or a product name. If content isn’t a key component of your social media efforts, you’re missing out on a powerful marketing opportunity.
4. Content builds relationships. Ultimately, content marketing is about building a relationship with your target audience. Creating content that shares your expertise around your product or service helps establish you as an authority in your industry. It also fosters trust (see #1). People will come to you for insights, ideas, and solutions — and bring you their business, too.