What is Content marketing Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience and to ultimately drive into profitable customer action. Buyers and consumers are already searching the web for answers that your brand is uniquely positioned to offer. Thus content marketing brings forward a buyer driven environment. You can tell if a piece of content is the sort that could be part of a content marketing campaign if people seek it out if people want to consume it rather than avoiding it. The goal of content marketing is to provide as much value from your content marketing campaign to as much of your target audience as possible. Content marketing provides truly relevant and useful content to your prospects and customers to help them solve their issues rather than pitching your products or services. The Importance Of Content Marketing As mentioned, content marketing is a strategic marketing approach that lets you build your brand in a simple but effective way. To business owners and content creators who wish to bring traffic to their websites, this is an important approach that is awesomely interesting. 1. It is Used By Many Leading BrandsMany big brands in the market to day have invested in this approach of getting their customers know about their brand while also building it. Research shows that vast majority of marketers are using content marketing. In fact, it is used by many prominent organizations in the world, including P&G, Microsoft, Cisco Systems and John Deere. It is also developed and executed by small businesses. Specifically content marketing is driven by three key reasons and benefits which are; creating increased sales, cost savings and gaining of better customers who have more loyalty to the brand. 2. It Is The Future Of MarketingCompanies send us information all the time about their products it is just that most of the time it is not very relevant or valuable. This is what makes content marketing so intriguing in today’s environment of thousands of marketing messages per person per day. Content marketing only provides the most relevant and valuable information to the customer you are trying to sell to. With these trends you get to notice that content marketing is just much more than mere marketing, it is the future of marketing in a sense that it is highly captivating to the customer. 3. It Makes Sense Of ContentContent marketing is nearly impossible without great content. Regardless of what type of marketing tactics you use, content marketing usually comes up to be part of your process and not something separate. Quality content is essential in all forms of marketing. Here are types of marketing and how quality content comes out in them.i. Social Media Marketing: Content marketing strategy comes before your social media strategy.ii. Search Engine Optimization: Search engines reward businesses that publish quality and consistent content.iii. Public Relations: Successful Public Relations strategies address issues readers care about but not their business.iv. Pay Per Click: For Pay Per Click to work, you need great content behind it.v. Inbound Marketing: Content is key to driving inbound traffic and leads to any business.vi. Content Strategy: Content strategy is part of most content marketing strategies in Fortune 500 companies. 4. Content Influences Other Online StrategiesIt is important to understand that content can serve as a complementary strategy to almost any other online marketing strategy. Content helps Search Engine Optimization by providing more web visibility and increasing your domain authority as well as earning inbound links. Content marketing provides source material for social media marketing campaign thus making them more effective to their cause. It can encourage more email sign-ups and be used as the basis for an email marketing campaign. Content marketing can enhance the value of your websites landing page and other web pages. Content marketing helps you build relationships with other online brands and industries thus making your content reach a higher marketability status. 5. Rich Content Is PricelessTrendy content, news content and other forms of ‘captivating’ material are all important and tend to attract a lot of visitors, but some forms of content will always be relevant. For example, people will always need to know tips for how to dress on a certain day according to weather or advice on how to travel efficiently. There may be new elements to some of these features as new technologies develop, but you can always spice up old posts with a few new ideas which are deemed relevant. Because content can theoretically last forever, it never loses value, making it a perfect long-term investment which will be ultimately priceless. 6. Content Marketing Matters To CustomersToday’s prospects show that many customers have a strong appetite for good information but more powerful resistance to the so-called plain sell. Most of us research products and services and make comparisons on different brands online before making a purchase. We study different cars, comparing prices and features, before ever setting foot in a dealership or making the actual purchase. Even grocery shoppers use mobile phones to compare prices and deals in different grocery outlets and markets. People want good content that helps them make good decisions, but they do not like being sold. Consumers are less responsive to traditional advertising and old-school sales tactics, and which is true for both B2C and B2B customers. According to one study, 70% of consumers prefer to learn about companies through articles instead of advertising. Another survey found out that 80% of consumers prefer to get information about a prospective purchase from articles instead of advertising. The same survey found that 70% say content makes them feel closer to the sponsoring company and 60% say content helps them make better buying decisions. These study and survey shows the value of content marketing to consumers of any brand. How Companies Are Using Content Marketing To Grow Their Business When creating a content marketing checklist, the first thing that you should always do is to identify your client’s interests. This will allow you to create high quality unique content that is both relevant and valuable to your audience. Many companies which are successful with their sales often find it easy figuring out how to bring out what they are selling through content marketing. 1. CiscoCisco has always actively used content marketing and social media to scale its marketing campaigns. A couple years ago, Cisco launched a new router and decided to use it as a case study to measure the ROI of its content marketing and social media strategies. Executives were stunned to discover that their digital campaign allowed them to reach their lead goals for $100,000 less than anticipated. Key point: Social media is a great way to draw attention to your content marketing efforts, but it’s always important to quantify your ROI. From Cisco’s example it is important to develop a system to measure the effectiveness of your own campaigns. 2. ToshibaThough content marketing is typically viewed as a B2C marketing strategy, Toshiba has proved that it can also help B2B brands generate new clients from across the globe. In 2011, Toshiba created a “Smart Community” in an effort to promote awareness of its renewable energy solutions. They optimized their platform for the keyword “smart community” and invested in a massive SEO campaign to boost their rankings. Their campaign proved to be remarkably effective, helping to generate 160,000 global followers on LinkedIn through the Smart Community campaign.Key point: Targeting a competitive, high-traffic keyword can be a great way to boost the ROI of your content marketing strategy. You may need to invest a lot of resources in your SEO, but the results will likely pay for themselves. It is important to recognize the value of creating great content to engage your audience and generate new leads. With these inspirations, use their success to fuel your own content marketing efforts. Today’s buyers and consumers are empowered and independent and tech-savvy marketers meet them where they are. A robust content marketing strategy will help your brand connect and engage with your audience at every stage of the buying cycle.