- February 12, 2020
- Posted by: sandra
- Category: Resources
Content marketing for small businesses is one of the most effective ways of influencing customer behavior, effectively communicating with your audience, converting your visitors, and finally selling your products or services.
Did you know that 53% of businesses use content marketing as a crucial part of their internet marketing strategies?
Are you one of them?
If not, you’re missing out on one of the most effective ways to attract more leads, more customers, capture the attention of your audience, build a stronger relationship with them, and improve engagement.
Would you like to start with content marketing for your business or do you plan to improve your content marketing strategy?
Read on to learn what content marketing actually is, how to produce useful content, how to fix and improve a broken content marketing strategy, and how to use content marketing to get more customers.
What Is Content Marketing?
Table of Contents
Were you aware that 70% of consumers prefer getting to know about a company, a product, or a brand via articles rather than ads? Writing informative and helpful articles that inform, educate, and help your consumers, addressing their questions, concerns, and interests will inspire and motivate them to buy without making them feel pressured into a sale.
Content Marketing is exactly what it sounds to be — a marketing strategy that uses different types of content. It can be used instead of more traditional marketing strategies, paid ads, and email marketing, or in combination with them. The goal of Content Marketing is motivating leads and purchases by using various types of content like blog posts, landing pages, product pages, infographics, videos, articles, and white papers.
Content Marketing gives your costumers a better understanding of your industry, products, company or a brand, and helps you make a deeper connection with them.
This is how Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing:
Content marketing is the marketing and business process for creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.
More simply, we would say that content marketing helps you empathize with your customers, shows that you care about their issues, concerns, and interests, helps you answer their questions, educate and inform them, thus helps you earn not only more purchases but customer loyalty as well.
The Benefits of Content Marketing for Small Businesses
Greater return on a smaller investment, exposure to new prospects and a larger audience, gaining more trust, a boost in organic search visibility, and keeping your website fresh and relevant are just some of the benefits of content marketing for small businesses that Neil Patel finds better working than paid ads.
Although paid advertising has always been a reliable tactic for customer acquisition, it’s becoming less effective. Content marketing is an effective, long-term strategy that doesn’t cover only customer acquisition but also captures their attention, engages, nurtures and converts them, all the while improving your brand recall.
Content marketing is equally powerful both for big and small businesses. However, small businesses often don’t have the resources big companies do to utilize for content marketing.
If you’re thinking ahead and want to become a go-to resource for your customers, consider investing in content marketing strategy.
The 3 major benefits of content marketing for small businesses:
- increased sales
- cost savings
- customer loyalty
Establishing a brand and increasing brand awareness, increasing website traffic without spending large amounts, converting your visitors into leads and sales, positioning your business as a thought leader in your area and industry, nurturing a trustworthy, long-term relationship with prospects and customers — these are the benefits of content marketing for small businesses you don’t want to miss out on.
Case Study on How Content Marketing Can Boost Organic Traffic and Reduce PPC Budget
Content marketing is a proven strategy that helps rank your website higher in Google for relevant keywords, thus bringing long-term results. Our client, Aqua Kitchen and Bath Design Center from Wayne, NJ had a goal to improve their organic rankings and save money — decrease their paid advertisement budget.
With a carefully thought-out content marketing strategy that included long-form blog posts, product and services landing pages, project showcase pages, all optimized for search engines and relevant area, along with building brand awareness and reputation on social media, Houzz, and Google, we delivered results our client needed.
Organic traffic surpassed paid traffic and paid advertisement budget was reduced by 50%. Aqua Kitchen and Bath has 4.3k keywords ranking in top 100 results and 892 keywords on the first page of Google.
Read the whole Aqua Case Study.
Effective Content Marketing Strategy Ideas for Small Businesses
After working with small businesses for many years, we know that small business owners often don’t have a large budget to spend on marketing. As a matter of fact, the marketing budget can be the first on the list to be repurposed when profit is reduced. But the truth is, content marketing is also one of the least expensive items in your business plan that brings incredible long-term results. It’s a cost-effective strategy well worth the expense you shouldn’t cut easily.
To be successful in content marketing, you should utilize the best performing content marketing formats. There is a variety of formats. We present you 5 content marketing format types that, in our experience, work best for small businesses. Each of them can be a good starting point for your content marketing strategy but each of these formats can serve you just as well in any stage of nurturing your consumers.
Blog Posts and Articles Optimized for Search Engines
Blog posts are the most common type of content marketing and an obvious starting point in any content marketing strategy. However, creating a blog post every once in a while is not nearly enough to bring you results. You need to be consistent and create a realistic schedule when to write and publish blog posts. Depending on the nature of your business and your industry, this can be every day, once a week or once a month, but whatever it is, you should stick to your schedule and measure results.
Make sure your blog posts are interesting, informative, engaging, relevant, and actionable. Create a content plan to cover all the topics that are relevant to your customers. Write blog posts to answer their questions, address their issues, and help them solve their problems.
If you’re consistent, relevant, and you optimize your content for search engines, you will attract both your current and new customers. Remember, writing and publishing blog posts will bring you results only if they are well-written (for search engines), relevant, and visually attractive.
Interested in how Search Engine Optimization works and what Persist Digital can do to help you set your Content Marketing Strategy on the right track? Explore our SEO Digital Marketing Services.
Having trouble with finding topics to cover?
Why not ask your customers what they would like to know and read about? For example, you can provide them with detailed guides and instructions for using your products, inform them about the current trends in your industry, and don’t forget to always point them to your business, offering your products or services as a solution.
Whether you need copywriting, blog post writing, web content, or SEO content writing services, we provide all and create a unique strategy for your needs. Learn all about our SEO Copywriting Services.
Repurposing content is one of the most effective ways to double the results without investing more than you need to. Make your content strategy even more effective with videos. Your content should be available to your users on multiple platforms and in various formats. Videos grow in popularity with the increase in mobile device usage. For many users, videos present a more convenient medium to consume your content than blog posts. Videos uploaded to YouTube are easy to access and allow your users to engage with your content wherever they are.
Make sure to invite your users to subscribe to your channel and don’t forget to post the link to your blog post as a source of the video. You can also make your videos available on iTunes, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn, wherever your audience is.
Videos are great for engaging your customers, presenting your products, services, or insights, generating new leads, and staying relevant in your industry.
Project Showcase and Case Studies
Are you offering services or perhaps products with installation?
Have you thought about showcasing your work on your website?
Project Showcase and Case Study pages are a great and unique way to showcase your work and let others know how awesome your company is at what it does.
Flowerbox, a unique concept company offering superior-quality, one-of-a-kind vertical green walls using preserved plants based in NJ, is one of our clients who had many successfully completed and brag-worthy projects but none of them was visible on the website.
We put together a unique content marketing strategy that included creating a dedicated landing page just for their projects and a special page for each of the projects they completed. Beautiful photos and a description of what was done, with a description of the product used not only showed their work but also inspired and motivated new clients to contact and hire them.
Read the whole Flowerbox Case Study.
Did you know that 90 percent of the information processed by the brain is visual?
Are you presenting complex information to your readers? Maybe you’re providing your consumers and users with detailed, step-by-step instructions on a process or you’re giving them statistics?
When creating content, especially content with complex information, remember that the human brain processes images 60,000 times faster than text.
Complex information is more easily digested and comprehended when visually presented. Video is one way, but creating an infographic and choosing a unique visual solution for each information, each of the steps, and each stat can help your customers make sense of all faster and more easily.
The chances are that you probably don’t have budget to pay for a designer as well. But don’t worry, you don’t need design skills to create compelling and engaging infographics. There are many customizable infographic templates available online. For example, Canva Infographic Templates allow you to easily adjust them to your needs.
When creating an infographic, remember to include your business name and website address, cite references, make it visually recognizable — add colors and fonts your brand uses, include it in your blog post, post parts of it on social media, and give it a title with relevant keywords. The latter will make your infographic easily found on search engines and Google Images.
How to Develop an Effective Content Marketing Strategy for Your Business
Now that you know what types of content are the most effective, it’s time to create your own, unique strategy for attracting more consumers, engaging with them, turning them into customers, and nurturing them.
Take these steps to develop the best content marketing strategy for your business:
Identify Your Content Marketing Goals
What should your audience do after they read or watch the content you’re presenting to them?
Answer this question and list all the options. All the answers you come up with present your content marketing goals. Make sure to identify them before you create content because they should dictate the outline and each call to action on your blog post or a product page. Only content written with specific goals in mind can produce the results you need.
Create Content for Each of Your Business Objectives
After you identify your objectives, make sure to plan the content to achieve them. Most small businesses choose to focus on generating awareness about their company, brand, products, or services. After this, it is important to create content that will showcase and prove your expertise. Remember Project Showcase and Case Studies? These will help you connect with your audience on a deeper level and inspire them to trust you and eventually hire you or buy from you. Also, aim to create shareable content that your audience enjoys reading. These are usually blog posts that address their concerns, solve their problems, and answer their questions before they even asked you.
Here’s how our content writing process looks like.
Identify Your Target Audience
Do you know who your audience is and who do you want to reach and attract with your content?
Before writing content and planning the topics, make sure to understand your target audience and what they truly care about. Identify who is your best customer, choose one customer segment, and focus on it. This is the best way to narrow down, custom-tailor, and focus your content marketing efforts. The best customer should be the foundation of your content marketing strategy.
Make a Publishing Plan
Identify types of content that work best for your business and industry, and set the schedule for creating new content on a regular basis. Make sure to be persistent and consistent. Whatever happens, don’t miss publishing new content pieces. This can be daily, weekly, or monthly, but the important thing is to determine what will bring the best results and what is realistic for your resources and budget.
If you’re having trouble making sales with your website, find out Why Your Website Isn’t Making Sales + How to Troubleshoot & Fix Issues.
Make Your Content Easy to Find
Depending on your goals, you want your content to be easy to find and available to a broad audience or to an audience on a specific location like state, city, or any other area. Make sure to include Search Engine Optimization and include relevant keywords in your blog posts. The right balance between keyword usage and overall usefulness should be the goal for each of the content pieces you create.
Distribute Your Content on Social Media and Through Emails
Do you know where is your audience? What social media channels do they use?
Depending on where your audience is, choose social media channels where you’re going to share your content and adjust the format and message for each of the channels. Make sure to invite people to visit your website and share your content.
Get your free copy of The Best Times to Post on Social Media Ebook.
Keep an eye on the results and evaluate the proper metrics on a regular basis to make sure you’re executing a successful and purposeful content marketing strategy. Website traffic, conversion rate, quality and number of leads, sales revenue, search engine rankings, subscriber list growth, and the number of shares of social media are the metrics to keep track of and measure regularly.
See for yourself what matters, read our Case Studies.
Do You Need Help With Your Content Marketing Strategy?
A great content marketing strategy can make a big difference between struggling to attract new customers and booming into a successful business everyone turns to. Whether you’re planning on creating content yourself or hiring a professional digital marketing agency to do it for you, be aware that you first need a strategy that will be executed diligently and optimized depending on results achieved. This will, surely, give your business the boost it deserves.
Whether you need to put the strategy together or you need professional content writers and marketers to execute the strategy and make sure you get the results you need, give us a call at 973 358 6565 or contact us through our online form. Persist Digital team of internet marketers will provide you with content that converts. We have all the expertise you need to start attracting, engaging, converting, and nurturing more customers with content today.