What is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is a strategic marketing and business process 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.
Good content resonates with the viewer because it fits with their goals or general interest. Great content maps to their desire, emotions and journey, delivering an outcome that will build advocacy and drive engagement mapped to revenue. In other words, content can be the “path to purpose” for the customer.
Navigating that path requires the use of analytics to get a clear understanding of the impact your content is having. Here’s where the intersection of PR and content becomes the pinnacle of great storytelling.
The best content connects with your potential customers and speaks to them as individuals, identified through the use of personas, personalization and great storytelling. Challenge yourself and your team to make each user a believer that the product or service they are purchasing will create a better world for them NOW. Ideas can make this a reality – whether emotional or physical – and move markets.
While the definition of what content marketing entails is not difficult to understand, how to implement a strong content marketing program is still elusive. It’s a marketing channel that embraces offline, online and hybrid marketing tactics, a cross section of tactics that may seem difficult to pull together. But with an integrated marketing approach, any business can drive conversions and improve advocacy, when you put the right assets in play.
The most valuable asset? The voice of the customer. HubSpot defines Voice of the Customer (VoC) as the process of capturing all of what a customer is saying about your business, product or service. It helps you visualize the gap between your customer’s expectations and their brand experience. By capturing your customer’s voice, you can connect and engage at each touchpoint in the customer journey. It’s the “voice of many voices” that in aggregate help drive leads into the sales funnel.
A VoC program should capture the tone and preferences of your brand’s most loyal advocates. It should show them that their feedback and opinions truly matter. And, most importantly, it should translate into a platform that sales, marketing and other key stakeholders can point to for validation in referrals. This will help drive new business and revenue for your organization.
An integrated PR agency can be the best way to get your content strategy and strong VoC program off the ground quickly. Why? There’s so much more to do with customers than in the past. The skill set that agencies offer – social and storytelling – is part and parcel with their integrated services.