I often see companies and agencies (social media, advertising or digital) that own a blog and 3 social networks on a page bought on Theme Forest. And the majority have 2 huge problems- they either have a shitty blog or they don’t even have one. And I’m sorry for the language, but I’m trying to make you realize the importance of having a blog for a company; If you neglect this aspect in 2015, the one responsible of this job should be held liable (or get fired).
But perhaps it’s not that person’s fault, perhaps the leadership simply does not understand the reason behind creating a blog, balancing the investment between content marketing and advertising, inspiring, educating or informing the customers.
And I’ve heard the following words too many times:
Well, why should we have a blog? So that the competition can see it and take our ideas?
Well, who has the time to sit and read a blog? People nowadays don’t even have the time to answer our questions.
And who should write on the blog? The marketers have flyers to take care of every month and they have emails to send and customers’ questions to respond to.
And what should we write? I don’t think you can write a whole novel about the same X or Y product.
And this is sort of a top 4 most common questions coming from a company that encountered the blog or content marketing problem.
Content Marketing statistics
But how about we take a look at some of the reasons why companies should pay more attention to content marketing (at the moment we can include blogs here as well) and see the value in this strategy?
43% of B2C marketers who have a documented strategy are considered more efficient compared with the 33% who don’t-Content Marketing Institute.
A strategy for content marketing almost doubles the chances of having a plausible ROI (Return on Investment) –Content Marketing Institute.
Marketers who have prioritized blogging are 13 times closer to ROI- HubSpot.
Content marketing is 62% cheaper than traditional marketing.
According to Forrester Research, 45% of marketers say they will prioritize content marketing in 2015.
And you could say, “Sure, Robert, but those are numbers taken out of statistics made in USA, where we know that budgets and resources are a hundred times higher than our local market” and you might be right. But what makes you think that in our market we can’t do things that bring results?
2 good practices for starting out in Content Marketing
Before you start writing down the next Content Marketing strategy, I want to leave you with 2 practices I use every time and that help me establish my next plan.
What is the industry you work in?
Whether you have a brand that sells men’s shoe laces, whether you sell tractor tires or fishing hooks, defining the industry you work in is very important. But think about it at a much higher level.
Let’s take Red Bull as an example, who is sort of like the Zeus of brands when it comes to content marketing. A refreshing energy drink with different flavors. So far, nothing spectacular. But Red Bull does not activate ONLY in the soft drinks industry, they cover everything that is extreme sports. That’s right. This brand has chosen the industry where it wants to activate in and offers relevant content to its fans.
So, choose the industry you activate in or where you’re planning to.
See who the people in this industry are, what are their needs and how can your brand come up with the right solutions for them.
What do you want from the content that you create?
Okay, okay, we’re talking about content marketing and content creation, but what do we do with them? What is the purpose of the content from the company blog? What do you want to do with it?
Of course, everyone wants to make the sale, get into the pocket of the customer and create a community that becomes the brand ambassador. But, often, we don’t know how to find a concrete answer for the simplest question and one that we can put into practice afterwards.
After studying more brands, reading some case studies and putting into practice some advices, I’ve gotten 3 answers that may influence the content marketing strategy of a brand:
Education- A brand can educate the market, the customers and even the competitors, through activities and content given to the followers. The first brand that comes to my mind when thinking about education is General Electric (6secondscience).
Inspiration- Inspiration is a point that any creative encounters (anyone who creates something) and, often times, a brand can solve this problem. And when I think of inspiration, I instantly think about Apple, from computers to iPods to iPhones and all the other products they’ve released until today. Apple inspires brands, companies and people.
Information- I mentioned above the Red Bull brand, which is a good example to follow when it comes to content marketing strategy. And when you study the Red Bulletin platform, you realize why I’ve chosen them for this point.
You have enough reasons to invest in content marketing.
Identify the industry your brand activates in.
Think about what you want to do with the content you create.