In this new age of semantic and social search, content marketing has emerged as more than just a buzzword or a fad to one of the most important and critical element in digital marketing. It has grown to become one of the most powerful tools available for doing business and connecting with targeted customers through the Internet – a fact known to up to 73% of business who rely on branded content for marketing and promotion.
Businesses from various industry niches in both B2B and B2C arenas rely on different kinds of content and approaches to content marketing. Social media, articles, newsletters and blogs remain at the top content marketing tactics used by many businesses as shown in the chart above. Other forms of content are also gaining ground and popularity among marketers including infographics and video among others.
What content marketing types or approaches business make use of, the fact remains the same – content marketing provides several benefits that business owners simply could not ignore. The following describes some of these benefits in detail, showcasing just a sampling of the limitless opportunities businesses can gain with content marketing.
The infographic (click to zoom):
1. Content Marketing Generates More Inbound Traffic to Your Site
The primary benefit content marketing delivers for your business is to generate valuable inbound traffic to your blog, website, landing pages or specific pages you want targeted audiences to go to. The power of content marketing for generating inbound traffic is by providing targeted audiences with relevant information that can provide a solution to a particular need — a problem, an improvement or simply entertainment.
Whatever form of content you provide, custom content is favored by up to 68% of consumers for the basic reason that it caters to their interest or particular need for information according to consumer study conducted by the Custom Content Council. The more pages and posts you have that provide these kinds of highly-targeted custom content, the higher the amount of inbound traffic that your sites will generate.
2. Content Marketing Increases Engagement with Targeted Audiences
The more traffic a site generates, the more likelihood it can generate leads or sales. However, this previous statement will materialize only if your site provides good content. Your business will not really benefit from all the traffic generation efforts you perform, whether paid or free, if none of them converts to leads or sales – which will only occur through interaction and engagement through your content.
Each businesses have their own niche and targeted audiences. Generating responses or engagements from specific types of audiences will depend on a particular type of content that caters to their interests or needs. Targeted audiences may prefer detailed instruction manuals or tutorials while others may prefer purely or highly visual content, as in the case of infographics and videos.
The simple act of enhancing articles with appropriate pictures or images can already increase total viewership by up to 94%, so it would be best to identify the right content mix that will attract targeted audiences. The key thing here however is to determine what types of content are preferred by your targeted audiences and in what form of presentation or delivery they would like to receive your content.
3. Content Marketing Generates More Leads
Inbound marketing basically can generate 54% more leads compared to traditional marketing. The beauty of conducting an effective content marketing campaign is that all your inbound traffic and engagement generation efforts can deliver even better results by up to three times more leads for every dollar you invest, compared to traditional Internet marketing techniques.
That’s why up to 93% of companies in the B2B market use this type of marketing more than traditional ones. Websites that are rich in content such as company blogs can generate more social traffic as well as backlinks from related sites. Companies with blogs and websites like these can generate 97% more leads than other companies without content-rich websites or business blogs.
4. Content Marketing Increases Sales
Content-rich websites and blogs can attract a steady stream of traffic from targeted audiences which can convert into leads and ultimately – into sales. A previous study conducted by the Custom Content Council highlighted that up to 55% of consumers are not only attracted to custom content but most likely would buy the products or services of the content provider.
Aside from the information provided in your content, the manner of delivery will also be a factor in converting web visits into sales. The better your targeted customers understand and appreciate the benefits they can gain from your business, the more likelihood they can become paying customers. That’s why it is important that you deliver content in a manner they would like and understand as in the case of explainer videos. Many companies already benefited from using these types of video in their content such as SalesForce-owned Rypple (20% increase in conversion rates) and Zappos (30% increase in sales).
5. Content Marketing Builds up Natural Link Popularity
Visitors satiated with the content your provide will like, share and syndicate your content, making them go viral particularly through social media. This is particularly true for content that are well planned and highly detailed in providing useful information that your targeted audiences need. These types of detailed content usually contain between 2,032 and 2,494 words and have more likelihood on landing on the first page of search results.
This in turn will generate precious backlinks as more people link to the content they liked from your site. This will boost your site’s natural link popularity as well as establish higher degrees of authority for your brand – factors that will further boost your PageRank ratings and your SEO.
6. Content Marketing Builds Brand Awareness
The content generated and published by your business is a reflection of who you are, your brand and your business. This is where you develop higher levels of relationship and engagement with your targeted audiences. The higher the quality of content you provide, the greater authority and awareness you generate for your brand.
By building brand awareness through your content, your business can generate higher levels of authority, trust and respect from targeted audiences. These in turn will influence the purchasing decisions of at least 52% on consumers who rely on blogs for information according to LeadersWest Digital Marketing Journal.
7. Content Marketing Establishes You as a Thought Leader
With increased brand awareness boosted by a steady stream of highly-targeted audiences, your content marketing efforts can establish you as an influential thought leader. You would be regarded as an authority or an expert in your industry niche, particularly true if you provide high-quality content that have helped, educated or entertained your targeted audiences. As a thought leader, you would be in a position where people will listen to what you say and maybe even influence their purchasing decisions based on your recommendations.
8. Content Marketing is Cheaper than Traditional Forms of Marketing
Compared to other forms of marketing, digital or otherwise, content marketing can prove to be more cost effective in delivering the results you want. The average cost of lead generation through inbound marketing is only half of what businesses can spend through outbound marketing. But content marketing, as an inbound marketing tool, is even more cost-effective than traditional marketing by as much as 62% less cost.
Unlike other forms of marketing which require the services of external providers, content marketing can be implemented even from within your own organization or team. This makes content marketing more cost-effective than paying someone else to do specific marketing tasks for you.
Recent changes in search algorithms and the growing influence of social channels increased the importance of investing and spending time on developing your content as a marketing tool. Businesses who would like to get ahead and reap the benefits of using this powerful tool should start planning and executing a carefully-planned content marketing campaign – and reap all the benefits listed here…. and more.