“Content is King”—you’ve probably heard of the phrase before. This quote has its roots in an essay written by none other than Microsoft’s co-founder, Bill Gates, in 1996. In his writing, Gates described the future of the Internet as a marketplace for content. And it seems like his assessment was spot on.

So, what is Content Marketing?

According to the Content Marketing Institute, the definition of 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, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”

Unlike advertising or traditional interruptive marketing, content marketing is a long-term strategy that focuses on building a strong relationship with your customers by giving them high-quality content that will add value to them, on a consistent basis. When executed correctly, the ROI of content marketing can be phenomenal.

The shift towards permissive marketing is happening due to the fact that people no longer pay attention to the daily onslaught of advertising/marketing messages on websites. In online advertising, this is also known as ‘banner blindness’. So instead of throwing away tens of thousands of dollars on advertisements, many companies (especially SMEs) have adopted the Content Marketing strategy.

“…always put their needs first before yours.”

Content Marketing is not a new approach and in fact, it has been around longer than the Internet. The essence of content marketing is simply good storytelling because everyone loves a good story, don’t we? Before you disagree, there’s a scientific explanation to this; Humans are empathic creatures. And as such, we respond to stories because they cultivate emotion and a sense of togetherness — a connection.

What makes a good story?

As mentioned earlier, content marketing is all about high-quality content that provides value to your audience and is produced consistently. When you “help” your customers by offering them valuable information, you are actually creating a bond with them, and eventually earning their trust. But first, you need to know your audience.

In order to create an effective content marketing strategy, you should ask yourself “who is my target audience?” This will help you determine the type of content that works best for your business and audience. Another tip is to always put their needs first before yours. Creating content based on your audience’s needs will ensure your effort gets found, consumed, discussed, and/or shared. That, my friend, is called Awareness—the first stage of any buyer’s cycle.

At the end of the day, the key to content marketing is to “Add Value” to your audience, regardless of the type of content. If you are not sure how, talk to your customers! Nothing beats accurate information that comes directly from your customers who can tell you their needs and preferences.

How do I get started?

The easiest way to kickstart content marketing is to start blogging. You can either do this on your own or engage a firm (like us!) to help plan, create, and manage your content. Our Edusales Program is designed to do this and more. We have a team dedicated to doing the planning, curating, creating, and managing of website blog and social media posts for you.

Interested to know more about our Edusales Program? Schedule a 15 mins call with our lead Sales and Marketing specialist now.