As linkbuilding became more difficult in Google’s world, many digital marketers increased their focus on content marketing as an SEO tactic for acquiring organic links and making their sites more relevant. According to a recently released report by Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs, 90 percent of B2C marketers now use content marketing and 60 percent plan to boost their investment in it over the next year.
In the report, B2C Content Marketing: 2014 Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends—North America, we learn that 40 percent of those marketers increased their content marketing in the last year and another 32 percent increased it significantly. Interestingly, more small B2C companies use content marketing than midsized or large ones.
However, only 39 percent of those marketers have a documented content marketing strategy. Again, small companies are more likely to have one than larger B2C companies.
Without a smart strategy, churning out content will rarely help your SEO now or in 2014. In fact, it could cause your site harm. Let us not forget Google’s Panda updates, first introduced in 2011. Low quality content does not help SEO and never really helped a site’s business objectives. If you want your content marketing efforts to provide any benefit, you need a good strategy for producing quality content your targeted audience will appreciate.
What is Content Marketing & Why is a Content Marketing Strategy Important?
Without a good strategy, content marketing could easily become more of an SEO tactic, and the marketer might tend to focus on the quantity of content rather than quality. While you use content marketing tactics such as articles, blog posts, e-newsletters, videos and case studies – and content marketing should be part of your digital marketing/SEO strategy – don’t think of content marketing as an SEO tactic. It is so much more.
Content marketing is a way for your company to communicate with and retain your customers as well as attract consumers who might become customers. You can share business news and information, talk about topics those consumers would be interested in, connect with them.
When creating a content marketing strategy, you think about why you plan to produce content – what you hope to gain from it. You consider who you will produce the content for and what they care about, what will interest them. Even if you are an SEO stuck in the mindset of focusing on search engines, you must know search engines want to provide the content people are searching for, to meet those searchers’ needs, which brings you back to a focus on meeting your consumers’ needs. Once you know the why and who, then you can think about how to achieve it.
Documenting the why, who and how helps you create a successful content marketing strategy to meet your objectives. It lays out your plan and enables you to measure the effectiveness of it. And, with a documented content marketing strategy producing measurable successful results, you can justify investing more time and money in your content marketing efforts.
Do you have a content marketing strategy in place? Does it help? We’d like to hear about it!