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There is more to content marketing than just writing articles to convince people to buy. The fact is that content marketing articles are not sales pitch; they are not filled with marketing or sales offers. Instead, the article engages your readers because it’s relevant and valuable to your target audience.
Small business content marketing doesn’t limit to writing content alone; it can be in any form and the content in content marketing isn’t limited to words.
Content marketing can be multimedia such as videos, podcasts, or slide shares, and it can also be in the form of articles or blog posts.
The ultimate goal here is to help your target customer base solve a problem, and you know that as a business owner you have some expert knowledge that you could share.
One particular area where small business owners often make mistakes is the thinking that content marketing is all about selling. Yes, one of the primary objectives of content marketing is to sell but you don’t have to make that obvious to your audience.
In short, content marketing is all about audience engagements; it’s never about putting pressure on audience to buy. The thought that content marketing is all about selling can actually be detrimental.
First of all, you have to ensure that you establish connection with your audience. It’s this connection that can result to sales either immediately or in future. Obviously, you can’t force people to buy from you but you can persuade them to patronise your business.
Forcing or persuading people to buy from your business can often be a negative marketing tactic that can make customers run away from you. This is why every small business owner has to be very careful while marketing their business through content marketing.
Basic small business content marketing rules of engagement
Having understood that content marketing is not about putting pressure on people to buy, it’s equally important to know that there are some basic rules that can help your content to shine and draw people in.
Therefore, if you want your brand to be more visible to your target audience and you want people to continue to remember your brand, then a strong content marketing strategy is essential.
Other benefits of small business content marketing
So now that you know what content marketing is and how it can be done as well as some basic rules of content marketing, you wouldn’t mind knowing other benefits of small business content marketing. Would you? You might be asking yourself, “Why would I volunteer expert knowledge to an online audience who I’m not even sure they are going to buy from me?” Let me tell you why…
#1]. Increase web traffic
The idea of content marketing is to offer a solution to a common problem and this alone can help you drive web traffic back to your site. The goal is to offer useful, relevant information in an honest manner.
You are not using a selling pitch in your efforts. The payback is that your readership will first; trust you, then, reward you, if they do seek out services in the future.
Also, content has a few other hidden benefits; such as the inclusion of rich keywords will ensure that a relevant readership finds you in a basic internet search.
#2]. Create a sales generation list
Another benefit you can gain is that you can use content marketing to grow a valuable list of potential customers, especially through a newsletter or direct mail campaign.
You can easily grow your email list by engaging your brand advocates and most valuable customers.
The idea is that you build a list that allows you to communicate with your target audience directly — an audience that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to. Let’s face it; you know that putting pressure on your audience with sales messages just doesn’t work anymore.
So it makes sense that if you offer useful information to help solve a common problem (i.e., in the form of white papers, informational video, e-books, or research from another expert source) that they would then be willing to buy from you, and even download and share your materials with other people they know.
#3]. Get into customer mind and reduce the sales cycle
Getting into your customers’ mind should be a priority if you really want to get them to buy from you. But how do you get into your customer minds to increase sales and revenue?
If you are offering your relevant, valuable content to subscribers through the newsletter, you are also earning something else very valuable — their trust. The more relevant advice and content you provide; the less hesitant they will be to work with you or buy from you.
The undeniable fact is that people love freebies and especially, valuable information that can help them achieve certain aims or overcome some kind of difficulties. So when your small business offers this sort of service through content making, you are indirectly impacting their lives and this can have positive impacts on your business sales.
#4]. Establishes an expert presence
The great thing about offering information that others find useful is that it doesn’t take long to become an expert that people will want to go to.
Providing your target audience with helpful advice or tips for problem-solving common problems (don’t give away everything now) will establish you and your business as a helpful resource, and over time, your business will be considered to have all the answers to their problems.