Since the advent of social media, the media landscape has undergone significant changes. For example, the various target groups are more difficult to reach and have the same means of communication as companies. In the public eye, reviews, recommendations and images on social media play an increasingly important role. As a result, advertising messages are rapidly losing their effectiveness and credibility. Advertising is widely ignored or pushed away in the social media age.
Brands try with great difficulty to keep up on social media, but often push more advertising into the world with an old-fashioned way of thinking. As long as this content only promotes products and services, consumers will do little with the messages. Content is only successful when consumers respond to it through likes, shares, comments and retweets.
With the help of these (re)actions, the content is further distributed. It is in this engagement, then, that the true value of content lies and with it the integrity and image of the company or brand.
What is content marketing?
When we talk about the concept of â€˜content marketingâ€™, it is about putting the customerâ€™s information needs first. Products or services offered are therefore no longer central to content creation. Content marketing is largely about content that inspires people, solves problems, answers questions, provides support, entertains or adds value in some other way.
Many different definitions have been created around the term content marketing. Eand of the best definitions has been formulated by the American Content Marketing Institute. Their definition reads as follows: Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach that focuses on creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience-and ultimately to drive profitable customer action.
A simpler definition of content marketing is: Content marketing is the publishing of content of value to capture the attention of target audiences and bind customers to a brand.
It is important that companies have a good understanding of the needs and activities of their customers. These insights must then be translated to provide valuable content. Content is defined as anything people can read, watch or listen to. This includes blog posts, videos, podcasts, instructional videos, newsletters, books, photos, infographics, et cetera.
When you want to experience the benefits of content marketing as a business, it is important to start thinking like a publisher. The marketing department will take more the form of a media editorial office. The field of marketing is changing at a rapid pace.
Outsource content marketing
You can outsource the creation of valuable content to various marketing agencies. It is important, when outsourcing your content, to choose a marketing agency that fits well with your own needs and vision. It is also possible to outsource only part of the content creation, for example only the texts on your website or promotional videos. By drawing up a content strategy, or having one drawn up, the basis is laid for the content creation. This will need to be clearly communicated to your content marketer.
What does a content marketer do?
In short, a content marketer is someone who deals with the creation, distribution and findability of content. This becomes analyzing what the target audience wants and likes. Next, a content marketer acts as a storyteller and engages with the target audience through the content created. Depending on your company, vision and target audience, the content marketing profession takes different forms. Some of the core tasks may include written content, video content, social media engagement, and encrypted content. For example, encrypted content may take the form of e-books or manuals released in exchange for email credentials. For all these forms of content creation, a needs analysis of the target group is carried out first. Then the content is created, distributed, and work is done to increase reach and engagement.
B2B content marketing versus B2C content marketing
B2B marketing and B2C marketing are very different, also in terms of content marketing. The difference between B2B and B2C already becomes clear when objectives are set.
B2B content marketing is all about increasing brand awareness, generating leads and increasing engagement. Often with B2B, the entry price is higher and the likelihood of a repeat purchase is greater. This also (usually) involves a longer negotiation period. Carrying a title of market leader or most innovative in the market can help ease negotiations. It is therefore important that your content matches the message. Customers in the B2B market place the highest value on choosing the right product for the need. This is anticipated by showing content that reflects knowledge and expertise.
In the B2C market, content marketing is mainly used for customer retention, increasing engagement and brand awareness. B2B often uses content to show knowledge and expertise, whereas B2C uses content to enthuse customers and prospects. This is done by presenting the products as ambitious and progressive. B2C customers are mainly influenced by their loved ones. It is therefore important to take this into account when creating content.
Example content marketing
One of the most well-known successes of content marketing is from Heineken. They have been working with content marketing for a long time. From the commercials walk in fridge (2008) to Orange Your World (2016), Heineken’s videos went viral. Since 2008, Heineken has been producing multiple YouTube videos. At this moment the YouTube channel has no less than 522,000 subscribers. In the production of these videos, Heineken focuses on the experience and not on the product. That’s why they chose the slogan Open your world and not Heineken is the best beer with the best taste.
Not yet convinced of the power of content marketing? Go and look for the different success stories and discover the forms of content marketing easily online! Need help creating valuable content marketing for your business? Then take a look at our copywriting services to see what we can do for you!