Newly started businesses or brands might not have a customer base yet, and that could give them challenges such as early losses, funding problems, and cash flow instability. To cope with those problems, entrepreneurs have to find an effective and efficient solution to attract customers, generate sales, and start making profit.
If your business is new, content marketing could be a highly effective marketing strategy to increase your brand awareness and start attracting your first batch of loyal customers. It may not produce quick results but if you can do it right, you could actually stand out from the crowd even if you’re just a newcomer. Here are 18 content marketing tips to win your competition even if your brand is still a brand new one.
1. Research your audience: Know what they love.
Before creating awesome content such as comprehensive blog posts, engaging images and amazing videos, you have to have an awesome knowledge and understanding about your target audience first. Know who your target audience are, what type of content headlines catches their interest, and what messages will influence them to make buying decisions?
Take note that content marketing is not about creating content that you love but creating content that your customers love. Of course if you can create content that both you and your customers love, that would be more awesome.
2. Analyze your competition: Be the best.
Make sure that your content is the best content in your competition. And how can you do it? Yes, you have to spy on your competitors. Using Google, you can search brands using queries specific to your industry and location to identify direct competitors. Furthermore, check out and analyze the content of their websites, blogs, social media pages, and their audience engagement to get solid ideas that will help you decide and craft more competitive content for your own brand.
They key to winning your content marketing competition is to always come up with a better content than your competitors provide. Hence, always push your limit and give your extra.
3. Evaluate your own business: Know thyself.
Don’t just check and analyze your competitors but also check yourself, your team and your brand. Identify your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (in other words do a SWOT analysis). Capitalize your opportunities and strengths for your content marketing campaign. If you’re an expert in your industry, maximize your expertise by writing expert articles or videos to build an audience who could be your customers.
4. Create a content marketing strategy: Be a strategist.
A content marketing strategy will be the foundation of your content marketing implementation. Your strategy should clearly define your long-term and short-term objectives, the steps that should be executed to achieve those objectives, the tactics and techniques that will give you an edge against your competitors, and the metrics you need to measure and monitor your content marketing campaign. Check out these tips from Jay Baer of Convince and Convert for creating a content marketing strategy.
5. Make your website user-friendly: Build a friendly home.
A website is a requirement for every new business to implement an effective content marketing campaign. It will serve as the mother ship of your content, which you will be distributing to different channels and platforms. It will also house your landing pages that will convince your potential customers to make buying decisions. Hence, make sure that your website is fast, clean, mobile-friendly, and will give your visitors a great user experience.
6. Write valuable blog posts: Make your visitors happy.
Blogging is a powerful strategy to increase your brand awareness, drive relevant traffic to your website, grow your audience, and attract more customers. To maximize the power of blogging, publish targeted content that rank high on search engines and interesting content that become viral on social media. To increase engagements on your blog posts, consider these tactics:
- Use rich media such as images, infographics, and videos. Remember that most people are either busy or lazy to read long texts.
- Use interesting headlines and descriptions. Be a fascinating storyteller.
- Place social media sharing buttons or calls-to action to encourage your visitors to share your blog posts on social media.
- Deliver the quality that you promise in your title. If your headline is awesome, make sure that you content is awesome too, or your audience will be disappointed and will likely leave negative comments.
- Encourage discussion in your blog posts by answering your readers’ comments whether they’re right on your blog or in social media platforms.
7. Write useful articles for other sites: Be an important guest.
To further increase brand awareness, website traffic and followers, be a contributor to relevant high-authority blogs or websites. You can also publish an article on LinkedIn, especially if your target audience are business owners or professionals. You may not earn backlinks from guest blogging but what is more important is you earn brand awareness, traffic, followers and some friends in your industry or profession.
8. Create great landing pages: Convince your prospects.
It’s where your potential customers decide to buy or not to buy from you. Your landing pages are also the places where you will invite and bring potential customers from different places on the Internet and beyond using links or URLs. Therefore, you have to see to it that your landing pages can convince people to make buying decisions. Whether you haven’t created your first landing page yet or you are already implementing several landing pages, here’s a list of 101 tips from Unbounce to help you optimize them.
9. Improve your calls to action: Optimize your conversion.
Your awesome blog posts, social media posts and other content shared on the Internet will be put in vain if you will not maximize them to achieve your business’ end goals such as to earn customers and make profit. Hence, improve your calls to action through testing and experiments. Create more compelling messages, texts and buttons on your content to convince your audience to buy your products or services. Read these useful post from Jeff Bullas about the 5 key elements of creating calls to action that will increase your sales.
10. Share engaging content on social media: Be active and viral.
Many companies create social media pages to promote their brands. However, some of them just leave their pages inactive after putting their profile information and posting some content to make their profiles complete. Content marketing in social media isn’t just like that. But it involves constant creation and sharing of interesting content to engage target audience. Therefore, don’t just create a Facebook Page for the sole purpose of having a page on Facebook but continue building a dynamic Facebook page where your followers can find it useful, likeable, shareable and fun to be with.
11. Do conversation marketing: Combine content and conversation.
Your content, blog posts, landing pages or social media posts can talk. However, you still need to do extra effort to make the conversation going. Content marketing will not be effective without conversation marketing. Hence, reply comments on your blog posts and social media posts to keep the conversation and engagement alive . Moreover, respond and follow up inquiries from your customers who may have contacted you through your landing pages. To promote your brand effectively, keep your business tone of voice right. Here are 10 tips from Content Marketing Institute’s blog for managing tone of voice for maximum impact.
12. Do relationship marketing: Be more human.
Content marketing plus conversation marketing is a great combination. But to make a greater impact to your potential and existing customers, don’t just create content, promote content and talk to people but build good relationships with them. A good relationship with your customers is the final ingredient to creating customer loyalty. Thus, don’t just be a seller but also be a true and honest friend.
13. Repurpose your content: Optimize your assets.
Maybe you have unutilized content that you can use for your content marketing campaign. Your company’s slideshow presentations that can be shared to public can be uploaded in SlideShare.net and other file sharing websites. Your company’s videos such as videos showing your dynamic, talented, hardworking and happy team can be uploaded and shared on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram to inspire people.
14. Build your personal brand: Increase your value as a content creator.
People may judge a content by its creator. They may check who’s the author of a certain article first before they read its content. They may check first who’s the creator of a certain video before they watch it. They may also judge a social post according to the reputation of its sharer. Therefore, to ensure that your content will be read, heard, watched, consumed and shared, build your personal brand bigger and better. Make your name more reliable and trustworthy.
15. Invest in paid ads: Boost your content marketing.
If you think that your content is in fact great and have the potential to go viral, don’t waste the opportunity to boost it through paid advertising. Your awesome blog posts can reach more target audience and earn more engagements on Facebook through Facebook Ads. Your landing pages could also earn more relevant visitors through Google Ads. So if you want to get the best out of your great content, invest wisely in paid advertising.
16. Promote your content offline: Maximize your marketing.
Blog posts, landing pages, videos, images and other online content are not only shareable on the Internet, you can also share their links offline. You can introduce them in your business cards, company brochures and other printed materials. You can also introduce them during a client’s meeting or during your public speaking gigs.
17. Analyze intelligent data: Make better informed decisions.
Monitor the condition, performance and progress of your content marketing campaign. Are you reaching your goals at the right time and at the right budget? Are you penetrating the right segmentation of your market or audience? Are your website visitors and social media followers converting to customers and generating sales? These are only some of the important questions that you should answer to be successful in your current and future campaigns. You can use free tools like Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Facebook Insights or some of the paid tools listed by Marketing Land in their list of the hottest digital analytics tools for marketers.
18. Update your content marketing strategy: Evolve and win!
Implementing a content marketing campaign may involve trials and testing. If you are doing it for the first time, chances are, you will experience failures even if you have a strategy. Content marketing, which connects with technology, may also evolve in a fast-faced environment. An effective strategy right now may already be ineffective in the near future. Hence, using your experience, lessons and the intelligent data you acquired, reevaluate and update your strategy periodically to be more competitive and successful in your content marketing campaign.
Remember that content marketing isn’t only about writing passionately, creating awesome graphics or producing amazing videos. As it name suggests, it involves creating valuable content and developing a marketing strategy that will bring that content to its target users, and help the business or brand achieve its objectives such as attracting new customers, retaining existing customers, increasing sales, and attaining profitability and stability.
Finally, getting some help from a content marketing specialist would be a great move for a new business, as an expert can guide your new brand to the right path.