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Using Content Marketing to Generate New Sales

Content marketing is still one of the most efficient ways of generating organic leads. Any business that has invested in content marketing stands a good chance of driving sales and maximizing profits. This could be your business as well.

 

We have found out that content marketing efforts fail dismally in promoting products and services. You might have tried blogging, videos, and infographics but still failed because there is something flagrantly wrong with your content marketing. You may ask, ‘Does that have anything to do with the amount of budget that I allocate to content marketing? – That is neither here nor there. Nine out of ten times, your content marketing fail to generate new sales for one of these reasons:

  • You have no viable content strategy in place.
  • You didn’t invest time in studying your target audience well.
  • You have a poor social media following.
  • You are using the wrong distribution channels.
  • You try several content marketing ideas at the same time and fail dismally.
  • You don’t have content marketing professionals in your team.
  • You don’t know how to optimize your content for SEO.

By the end of this article, you’ll know what you need to do in order to ace your content marketing, but first things first:

What is Content Marketing?

There are various ways of defining content marketing, the most precise and easy one is: Content marketing is a unique marketing technique used by brands to create and distribute valuable content that resonates with their target market. The real purpose of content marketing is to build lasting relationships with prospects and drive them through the sales funnel to become paying customers.

Types of content mostly utilized in content marketing may vary from one brand to another. One brand may use blog posts and press releases, while another one can opt for infographics, videos, or podcasts. So, it all boils down to the kind of products or services that you offer, the demographics of your prospective customers, and your marketing objectives.

The history of content marketing

The whole idea of using content marketing to drive sales dates back to as early as 1912. John Deere set precedent for many brands using content marketing to improve their brand awareness. Soon after, other brands realized the importance of publishing content to promote their products and services.

  • During the golden era of radio, which is between 1930 to 1950, companies relied mainly on radio content to promote their brands.
  • Then TV became popular in 1950. Brands placed commercials, sponsored primetime shows, using visual content to market products and services.
  • 1993 was the watershed year when people started purchasing personal computers, as a result, internet usage began to increase exponentially. Most companies started setting up websites and ran email marketing campaigns.
  • The phrase “content marketing” was coined three years later, in 1996 by journalist John F. Oppedahl. As they say, the rest is history.
  • When social media usage exploded, most companies were already publishing blog posts. However, when Facebook was launched in 2003, no one predicted that it would be one of the great tools for disseminating content.

How content leads

By and large, most customers go through a journey before purchasing a product or service. You can use content to drive them that journey. First and foremost, you need to understand your customer’s pain points. Once you do, it becomes relatively easy to produce content that helps customers address them. Virtually all customers go through the following stages:

  1. AwarenessAt this stage, the customer realizes that he has a problem. For example, they need a new vehicle, your content should reiterate this point.
  2. ConsiderationAt this stage, the customer considers purchasing a vehicle, but they are still not sure. Your content drives them further the sales funnel by telling them the benefits of having a car.
  3. IntentionAt this stage, the customer decides to purchase a car, but they want to weigh the pros and cons. Your comparison article such as BMW vs Mercedes Benz helps them to compare two brands.
  4. ConversionAt this stage, a customer wants to know where to purchase a car. Your video or FAQ tells them where they can find the nearest car dealer.

Quick facts about Content Marketing:

Try these easy ideas of using content to generate new sales:

1. Have a content strategy

There is little your content marketing can achieve until you have a blueprint in place. This is a plan that will outline your marketing goals, marketing KPIs, the kind of content that you will produce, and so on. Translating your goals into tangible results becomes fairly easy when you have a content strategy.

Some of the questions that you need to use to develop a winning content strategy are:

  • Who are we targeting?
  • Why are we targeting them?
  • What kind of results do we want to achieve?
  • How are we going to distribute our content?
  • What type of content will work for us?
  • How are we going to track progress?
  • Who is going to be responsible for creating content for us?

Moreover, your strategy should highlight marketing goals for every type of content. In other words, How-to videos are for building brand trust, listicle articles are for generating leads and driving website traffic, build brand awareness, while infographics can be used to generate leads, and to grow your audience.

2. Create buyer personas

Next up, make sure that you develop buyer personas. This may sound like a futile exercise to some, it is not. Creating buyer personas still matters if you want to create content that converts like crazy. Over and above that, you’ll know the kind of content that your target audience is likely to consume.

Crafting personas shouldn’t be hard if you already have existing customers. All you have to do is go through customer profiles and create two or three personas. You can glean other information about your customers from live chat conversations, emails, phone calls, surveys, and of course – social media. This will help you to create the kind of content that hits the mark. Questions you need to ask yourself include:

  • What kind of videos or TV shows do they watch?
  • What kind of books do they read?
  • What are their favorite hangouts?
  • Which social media platforms do they use?
  • Who do they follow on Twitter and other social media platforms?

3. Use relevant content

Another crucial aspect to creating that will generate leads is knowing which content to use. You don’t have to produce every kind of content, but content that makes sense for your industry. Decide if you are going to use blog posts, webinars, podcasts, and How-to YouTube videos. Know if your content is going to be 70% videos and 30% text. Once you have crafted personas it becomes easy to know what kind of content is likely to work for you.

4. Syndicate your content

Publish original content on your blogs then syndicate it to other websites. What is content syndication? This is basically republishing your blog posts, videos, infographics on other platforms such Medium, LinkedIn, Reddit, Big Sugar, etc.  This will help you to reach a wider audience. Here’s a word of caution: While you syndicate your content always make that it doesn’t harm your SEO. And always mention at the end of each piece that the content originally appeared on your website.

5. Match your content with the right social media platforms

You don’t have to distribute your content on every social media platform. It’s essential that you should match your content with the right social media platform. Best social media platforms for sharing content include:

  • Use Facebook for reaching people between the ages of 35 and up.
  • Disseminate video on Snapchat.
  • Quote your blog posts and share them with Twitter’s younger audience.
  • If you are creating videos, consider publishing them on YouTube, LinkedIn Vimeo, Tik Tok, etc.

6. Design impeccable lead magnets

If you want people to hit the download button, it’s critical that you should create aesthetically appealing lead magnets. Just make sure that all the lead magnets that you use contain details such as your logo and contact details.

7. Measure Your Content

Your content is not likely to generate leads unless you make a point to measure it. Free Tools that you can use to measure the effectiveness of your content include Google Analytics, Scoop.it, Addvocate, and others.

 

Use the following key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure your content:

  • Time on page
  • Number of shares
  • Unique page visits
  • Comments and interactions
  • Number of leads

Need help with your content marketing? Reach out to Big Hit Creative. today!

Big Hit Creative

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