8 Things you can learn from publishers to boost your content marketing
Marketing has evolved in the last few decades. From in-your-face print and digital advertisements, it has become a more subtle art form. Today, content marketing has become an absolute favorite with marketers, and for a good reason. A survey of 1500 companies revealed that 84 percent have a content marketing strategy because they deem it highly effective. However, if your content marketing efforts are not delivering the desired result, it is time to rethink your strategy. And who better to learn from than the ones who are all about content? Yes, we are talking about online media publishers. Here are insights gathered from editors with years of experience in the digital space, which can help your brand learn, adapt, and grow!
Develop a core personality:
The first step is to define who you are as a brand, and what personality your content will take. Are you youthful, friendly, kind, successful, influential, sincere, competent, sophisticated, etc.? Narrowing down to your core personality will define your brand voice, tone, and language. This will ensure that your content is consistent across the board and relatable to your target audience. Additionally, this way you can provide a more cohesive experience to your customers.
Use an editorial calendar:
Consistency is key in digital marketing. Before you even start developing the content, it is important to create an editorial calendar. This calendar will specify which topic and format will be published on which date. Nothing kills customer interest faster than haphazard, random publishing. Fix days in a week where you will publish a certain kind of content so that customers can look forward to what they like. This will also help you leverage topical days by having enough time to create good content around them. The calendar should be sacrosanct; make sure that you don’t miss these publishing timelines.
Keep the audience at the center:
This is one major reason why publishers are much more successful at doing content than most brands. What they put out is mostly for the readers and their interests. This is one of the biggest blunders brands make. They think from the perspective of the company and what they would like to achieve in their marketing efforts. While this is not completely wrong, the priority has to be the takeaway of the customer. For example, if a bank wants to boost its business loan offering, the article should not be only about the interest rate of the bank and the process to get a loan. Instead, it should focus on ‘key things to remember while taking a business loan’ or ‘ways a business loan can help you grow your business’. Ensure that the customer learns from the content by keeping them at the center and making it relevant. At the same time, also briefly mention the bank’s offering and make it actionable so that the customer can move in the right direction of securing a loan.
Produce reliable content:
There is a lot of content available on the internet. One simple Google search throws up thousands of results. So why should a customer read your article instead of all the others available to them? To ensure that the customer chooses you, write reliable and credible content. Research well to present facts. Use data points from established research companies to substantiate what you are saying. Doing this will not only build your brand’s loyalty but also establish you as a leader in your space.
Think SEO before writing:
Another common mistake is to think about SEO and keywords after the article is written, and then inorganically stuffing the keywords in it. This process kills the flow of the article and makes it sound disjointed. Think about the keywords before you even start writing the article. This way, they can be incorporated seamlessly and effectively.
Simplify complex topics:
Make your content simple to read and comprehend. The goal is to inform and educate your customers. Using complicated language can intimidate them. Find a way to make the most complex (or seemingly boring) topics an easy read. For example, an investment firm should write a content marketing piece on ‘how to invest in mutual funds’ in a simplified manner so that even a novice understands it and decides to switch from traditional saving tools such as fixed deposits to a more diversified and lucrative tool such as mutual funds.
Repurpose your content:
There are multiple formats that brands should leverage to make impactful content. These include articles, blogs, videos, GIFs, infographics, and more. Writing good content takes time. If you find that a certain blog or infographic has done well, repurpose it into other formats to reach a wider audience. However, choose a format most relevant to the topic. For example, a blog with a lot of statistics can be converted into an infographic, while one with an emotional connection can be turned into a video.
Do not hard sell:
Again, this is something many brands do, but it is most definitely a big turnoff for customers. Understand that customers mainly click on content to learn something; they do not want a brand pitch. Of course, unless the headline specifically says it is brand-related. For example, if the title is ‘Steps to open a bank account with XYZ Bank’, it is all right to just talk about the bank’s offering. However, if it is a thought leadership piece, do not hard sell. The art of content marketing lies in subtle, actionable brand mentions. Be strategic and play it smart.
Remember, your favorite publisher is popular because they either entertain you or inform you. They don’t try to push their services or thoughts on you, which is why you like them. Your audience is no different, and that is something you can learn from publishers.
Contributors: Aditya kumar , Swapnil Adsul