It makes sense. The search – or creation – of an interesting story has always been for us, as for representatives of our own kind, a way of finding order in the chaos of life. Smart brands are a way to determine what’s next in line among the chaos of modern marketing.
What speaks in favor of content? For example, the human component. Stories are welcome, but advertising is not. They share stories that are constantly changing depending on what is affected by them and who they affect. They pave the fastest way to hearts and minds; there is actual scientific justification for how the brain responds to stories.
What is Content Marketing and Why Your Brand Needs It?
If marketing is promotion, then content marketing is promotion through content. Nowadays, consumers block advertising, do not trust advertising, and do not perceive it. But at the same time, they spend more and more time on social networks, podcasts, and blogs. Therefore, content marketing is a must-have for any business that promotes its product or service through a personal brand.
Why is content the king of personal branding? Because now more than ever, the consumer holds an important context, values, and meanings. This is marketing 3.0.
Marketing 1.0 was the marketing of the product, and the main features were product features.
Marketing 2.0 is customer marketing, and customer needs are at the center of it. This is an age of high competition and the battle for positive consumer experience. But this age is passing.
Now comes Marketing 3.0 – value marketing. “The consumer no longer chooses by quality, price, or consumer properties; in each niche, there are a lot of similar products. They choose according to what values the brand holds and whether it suits the consumer himself in terms of values, including the human brand.” – says Tim Jones, the brand manager at Photza image retouching service.
And the main advantage of content marketing is that it conveys values like nothing else.
In addition, content marketing is:
- Much cheaper than other methods of promotion, for example, event marketing;
- The universal tool that can solve several problems at once;
- Robust – the customer base that you have acquired remains with you, and the messages that you conveyed to it will continue to work;
- With the help of content, you can attract a new audience, become recognizable, gain a certain reputation, build a loyal and involved community, and sell your services and products.
The more information surrounds the consumers, the harder it is for them to perceive it. In order not to go crazy, the user severely restricts the incoming flow of information – unsubscribes from bothering bloggers and arranges a digital detox. Now, to get to the audience, you need a strategy of how to create such content that will be interesting and useful to the audience and will meet your marketing goals at the moment.
What opportunities does a content brand give a brand?
- Correlate the goals of each promotion channel with each other and with a common marketing goal;
- Long-term and medium-term planning, monitoring the implementation, and the evaluating of results;
- Choose from all channels of promotion, tools, and solutions the most effective one: by the volume of the outcome, by the time it was achieved, by the span of this outcome, etc .;
- Abandon ineffective tools and channels and optimize costs;
- Create content that will be best received by the audience and give the greatest response;
- Consistent achievement of a global marketing goal.
Things You Must Do
UNDERSTAND YOUR REASONS
The best brands focus not on what they do and how, but on why they do it. Having decided on this, you will find your story. Go beyond the boundaries of your category, thinking about what role you play in people’s lives. Convincing branded stories appeal to values, to what the brand stands for and why it exists.
IT IS NOT (ONLY) IN YOU
Only a few enjoy the conversation in which one of the interlocutors speaks only about themselves. Nevertheless, for over a hundred-plus years, brands broke into the conversations of their consumers only to talk about themselves and their effectiveness. This approach no longer works. The content should entertain, educate, and be useful. Stop thinking about what you want to say and start listening to what your audience wants to talk about.
KNOWLEDGE GIVES IDEAS
Get to know your customer as well as you know yourself. Data-based knowledge and insights fuel creativity and ensure that you have not just a cool idea. It is also related to solving business problems and interesting to your consumers. Intel & Toshiba’s “Inner Beauty” campaign won this year’s Grand Prix in the “Branded Content and Entertainment” nomination in Cannes, thanks to a successful intersection of people’s knowledge and brand values: only what is inside matters.
GO ALL THE WAY TO THE END
Be fearless (but never reckless) in your commitment to stories. Although many have tried their hand at content marketing, it was often used as part of an experiment or added at the very end of a marketing campaign, causing disappointment. The story should be in the heart, not in the tail, of your marketing plan. Once you’ve decided on a story, you must strengthen it with all the existing communication channels. Think of your media plan as a plan for the consistent distribution of content.
BE SOCIAL IN YOUR ESSENCE
Brands should think like editors and act like publishers. Forget the mentality of your campaign. Placing a story on the market is the beginning, not the end. Consumers want to play their part. They want to protect brands and products that they like. Branded content promises two-way communication and closer relationships, which turns consumers into advocates and even brand apostles. Make sure your content is accessible and shareable. The speed of development of social networks requires a new type of thinking: understanding how to create something that will be socially attractive and rapidly develop from an idea to its implementation. Keep the data in mind all the way, and improve, optimize, and retarget all your efforts.
Author’s Bio: Marie Barnes is a backlink expert at LinksManagement. She also does some editing work at GearYoda. She is an enthusiastic blogger interested in writing about technology, social media, work, travel, lifestyle, and current affairs.