5 Steps to Creating Knockout Content Campaigns
An effective content campaign can help your company reach new audiences and generate more sales leads. Learn how to build focused, impactful content campaigns that will resonate with your customers
MESSAGING • MARKETING • SEO
It’s common knowledge that content marketing is what drives traffic to websites, improves a site’s search engine optimization (SEO) rankings, and generates sales leads. But how do you use content effectively to do that? And what’s the difference between content marketing and a content campaign?
Content marketing encompasses many types of content including blogs, email broadcasts, social media posts, pay-per-click (PPC) advertisements, podcasts and videos, e-newsletters, and more. Its purpose is straightforward: to create and share content for free that is informative and entertaining, and helps your firm build trust with readers so they will become your customers.
In general, content marketing is designed to draw people to your website and entice them into your sales funnel. It’s the most critical ingredient in the commercial digital marketing stew. According to a 2015 poll of marketers conducted by Smart Insights, 29.6% ranked content marketing ahead of all other marketing techniques in importance, including marketing automation (12.8%), mobile marketing (11%), social media marketing (8.9%), and PPC marketing (3%).
A content campaign is a long-term, focused effort to drive awareness of your company and its services, or to change an impression people have of your company with content you have created that centres on a single topic.
Your content campaigns are not sales pitches. They contain targeted, relevant, useful information that is designed to educate or answer your readers’ questions. They address specific issues that your desired audience cares about while positioning your company as a thought leader in your industry. For example, a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning company may launch a content campaign each autumn explaining to homeowners how they should winter-proof their homes to help reduce their energy bills.
How to Build an Impactful Content Campaign
At one time, some companies would produce irrelevant, forgettable content stuffed with keywords as a means of spiking their SEO rankings. Thankfully, that methodology has fallen by the wayside. Now, search engines determine their rankings based on both keywords and valuable content.
There are five steps you need to take to develop a useful and impactful content campaign:
Be credible. Building trust demands credibility. That is to say, readers (or consumers) are more inclined to trust a company that consistently provides positive, personal experiences, quality products, useful information, and which responds to problems when they arise quickly and transparently.
Serve your audience with knowledge. Understanding quality, relevant content is the glue that holds your company’s sales funnel together, give your audience what they value: answers to questions they may have. Do it well, and you’re more likely to increase your sales in the short- and long-term.
Use keywords strategically. Using a select number of keywords is useful but don’t rely on them solely. From an SEO point of view, it’s important to use them to help people find your content, but keywords alone won’t help you create fantastic content that will resonate with people. It’s also critical to understand that SEO techniques are useless without meaningful content. Content is the foundation on which SEO sits.
Tap into your team’s creativity. Brainstorm with your colleagues and come up with interesting topics for content campaigns that will capture both your existing customers’ and desired prospects’ attention. Sometimes, you can discover terrific topic ideas simply by scouting Twitter hashtags relevant to your business or targeted audience.
Define what your goals are. What is the objective of your content campaign? Is it simply to give sales a boost? Then ponder how a content campaign can achieve that since using content to make a blatant sales pitch rarely works. Is it to increase email subscribers? Now flip the question and ask yourself, “how will someone who reads your content benefit from it? What matters to your targeted audience?”
Measuring the Results
After you’ve published your content and run the campaign, analyze the results to see what worked and what didn’t. Make changes where required, then begin anew. Bear in mind that determining a return-on-investment (ROI) on your content campaigns is not a straightforward calculation, and don’t lose sight of the big picture: you’re playing the long game with content. It’s a brand-builder, it inspires trust, and it helps position your company as an industry leader.
When measuring results to determine the ROI, you first need to know:
How valuable each new visitor to your website is and the length of time they spend at your site
How valuable is improving your visibility on Google
What the worth is of new visitors to specific product pages on your company’s site
The level of importance to place on the growing number of your social followers