What Is Content Marketing? Beginner’s Guide To Effective Content Strategy

Content marketing involves consistently and strategically creating, publishing, and distributing valuable content to a particular audience to drive lucrative customer action.

In other words, content marketing involves creating content that meets the needs and wants of your target audience. The content is then offered to them free-of-charge consistently intending to convert this ‘free value’ into ‘real value’ by buying from you.

In this post, we are going to help you understand what content marketing really is. Once you understand this, you’ll be in a better position to put in place a killer content strategy that will drive insane traffic to your website and skyrocket your ROI.

Good Content Explained

We can all agree to the saying that “Content is King”. But it’s not just any content – It’s about high-value content. So, what is “high-quality” content?

Well, content marketing helps us understand what’s “high-value” content is. There are three components of “high-quality” content within an actionable content strategy.

You’ll require all three components for you to create hot content that sells – content that brings you the desired business results. Without further ado, “high-quality” content is:

  • High-Value
  • On-Brand
  • Platform-specific

Besides creating on-brand content, you must also align your content with a perfect framework that keeps you on-brand – content pillars.

What are Content Pillars?

Content Pillars are the foundation on which your entire Content Marketing strategy stands. These Pillars are critically important in moments when:

  • You don’t have an idea of what to write about
  • You’re unsure whether to post a particular content piece on Social Media
  • You can’t seem to understand why your post isn’t getting more engagement
  • You’re wondering how to get more followers

You should know that creativity must have boundaries. If you lack boundaries, you’ll always struggle to find something to write about. Content Pillars help us set boundaries, which in return enhances our creativity.

Content Pillars Formula

Content Pillars formula helps you create hot content without struggling. The formula is defined by:

Area of Expertise + Customers’ Needs/Wants = Content Pillar

In ray man’s language, Content Pillar involves identifying your area of expertise and then understanding what your customers want or need to learn or hear about. Once you get that, you’ll be ready to create content that sells.

How To Create Content Pillars

You have to know who your target audience and ideal customers are before you create effective Content Pillars.

  • List all the areas of specialty that you wish to be recognized for in your niche or industry
  • Try to combine any of these areas into at least one broader topic
  • Carefully go through the list and remove any that your ideal customer and target audience may not be interested in.
  • Narrow down your list to three main topics: those will be your Content Pillars.
  1. High-Quality Content is Branded

Customers expect to see a coordinated user experience throughout the brand channels. Thus, your in-store experience must feel, appear and act like your Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Website, Pinterest, Blog, and everything else in all corners of the globe.

However, this doesn’t mean that you create the same content for all the social media platforms. It means that everything must be unique but on-brand. With branded content, you make sure that your customers develop a sense of trust and reliability.

In return, that increases the chance of them buying from you. Also, they don’t just buy but also remain loyal to you, which guarantees more sales.

How To Ensure You Have Branded Content

There are 6 main elements of a brand you first need to understand, including:

  1. Mission statement
  2. Core Values
  3. Value Proposition
  4. Brand Personality
  5. Target market
  6. Ideal customer persona

Next, come up with your Content Pillars. Create 3 pillars that are the audience and industry-specific and 2 that are “human-specific.”

Lastly, establish your brand story. You can find resources online to get you started with this. For instance, StoryBrand, a book written by Donald Miller, is a great resource that can help you succeed in the online arena.

  1. High-Quality Content is Platform-Specific

Every platform is unique. Twitter and Facebook are both social media sites. However, that doesn’t mean that you can share your content on Facebook to your following on Twitter and expect success.

As mentioned, platforms are different. While people go to Instagram for one reason, they also go to Facebook for another different reason. Your content throughout all platforms will be similar but on-brand. But, you must adapt it to fit the special requirements of each platform.

Ensure you don’t get confused here, especially when it comes to social media. Here’s a chat sheet to follow to ensure you’re making the right decision:

  • Facebook is for educating people
  • Pinterest is for answering questions and finding ideas
  • Twitter is for entertaining people or making people feel legitimate
  • Snapchat is for creating connections
  • Instagram is for inspiring people
  • TikTok is for those who want attention

Thus, you must create branded content and align it with the main reason people spend time on that platform.

  1. High-quality Content is High-Value

You don’t just to be on-brand and platform-specific – you also need to add value to your customers simultaneously. Free samples are a good example of value. Giving a valuable product or service and giving it for free is a perfect way of making a customer buy from you.

However, “free samples” don’t necessarily have to be restricted to products. You can also offer “free samples” when you:

  • Share your expertise in Social Media sites
  • Produce regular podcasts
  • Share in-depth blog posts

Offering something of value is a sure way of bringing your value back. In other words, creating “high-quality” content is a sure way to an excellent Content Strategy.

Final Thought

Undoubtedly, “Content Is King.” High-quality content is a must-have for any marketer who’s looking for high traffic on the website. You have to create content consistently and strategically to make a difference. Good content marketing is the basis of a perfect content strategy!

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