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Content Marketing 101: Decoding The Most Popular Marketing Strategy

According to a report by Hubspot, 70% of the marketers in organizations/startups are actively investing in Content Marketing. In today’s where businesses face neck-to-neck competition, the need to stand apart and reach out to the audience more effectively has propelled Content Marketing as an efficient strategy among marketers. But, what is Content Marketing? Is it just creating blog posts and expecting traffic to your site? If you think so, explore more to understand the vast scope of Content Marketing.

This blog provides you with quality insights on inbound marketing strategies and examples, paving the way for you to craft a content strategy for your website on your own.

Content Marketing – An Overview

In simpler terms, Content Marketing typically involves ideating, creating, reviewing, and publishing a piece of content that intends to satisfy your customers. Here, content can be informative or promotional. Content marketing comes under the umbrella of Inbound marketing techniques, wherein the organization takes efforts like creating Content for its target audience.

Content Marketing is highly crucial in enhancing your brand awareness among the audience. Parallelly, with the right type of content, you can convert traffic into potential leads, paving the way for the better growth of your organization. Now, why should startups adopt Content Marketing in their ecosystem? Well, the needs for this marketing strategy is extensive, including certain crucial takeaways like,

  • Boosting your conversion rates
  • Creating an everlasting relationship with customers
  • Solving real-life challenges of people
  • Improving brand visibility in the long run

Types of Content Marketing

Now that you are familiar with the underlying concept of Content marketing, it is time to look at the big picture. A majority of organizations out there confine their Content marketing strategy to blogs alone. However, there are numerous types of Content Marketing techniques that can do wonders, if utilized in the right sense. Some of the popular types include,

  • Blog content marketing
  • Social media content marketing
  • Video content marketing
  • Infographic content marketing
  • Podcast content marketing
  • And many more.

Any form of visual medium that helps you in reaching out to your customers and elevate the organic traffic of your site gets categorized under the types of Content marketing.

Inbound Marketing – An All-Encompassing Brilliance

As discussed earlier, Content marketing gets categorized under the Inbound Marketing structure, which brings us to the next important topic – What is Inbound Marketing? Inbound Marketing is a marketing methodology adopted by an organization to build everlasting, meaningful relationships with customers by empowering them throughout their buyer journey. Some of the popular Inbound Marketing strategies include content marketing, SEO, events, webinars, video lectures, social media campaigns, etc.

One of the significant advantages of this strategy is that you get to engage customers in a more lively manner, enabling you to experience better results than other conventional marketing methods.

Outbound Marketing Vs. Inbound Marketing – The Ultimate Duel

Similar to Inbound Marketing, there’s another marketing strategy that has emerged as a crucial component among marketers across the world. As its name goes, outbound marketing typically involves outwardly pushing an organization’s/startup’s products towards customers. Some of the classic examples of Outbound marketing include cold calling, paid media, etc. With marketers split between inbound & outbound methodologies, there arises a need to compare, analyze, and scrutinize what’s best for you. Here let’s draw the comparison of inbound marketing and outbound marketing based on a few key metrics.

#1 The Technique – Pull Vs. Push

Among numerous metrics for comparison, the underlying difference between these evergreen marketing strategies is the technique. In Inbound marketing, you pull the audience towards your website through numerous content pieces like blogs, videos, webinars, whitepapers, etc. This way, you get to bridge the gap between customers initially before pitching them your product.

When it comes to outbound marketing, your ultimate aim is to push your products towards your customers. Instead of adopting a ‘give and take’ approach,  you directly indulge or make efforts to advertise your brand/product to your audience. Displaying ads, leveraging telemarketing groups, affiliate marketing campaigns, etc., come under the umbrella of Outbound marketing.

#2 The Communication & Reception Aspect

One of the significant advantages of inbound marketing is that it is a two-way channel. Customers get to visit your site time and again, not only for your products but also for different high-quality content pieces you produce over a course of time. This way, your brand reputability, and awareness elevate significantly. Besides, social media reception is a boon in today’s highly-competitive ecosystem.

In contrast, outbound marketing paves the route for one-way communication. While one-way communication doesn’t necessarily create a bad impression, you run the risk of being wrongly perceived by a considerable group of audience. Right from categorizing telemarketers under ‘Spam’ to skipping ads, your conversion rate takes a huge dent.

#3 The Numbers Game

Let’s take a deep dive into some stats regarding the comparison of two methods to understand the effectiveness of both techniques.

Inbound marketing produces three times more deals per dollar when compared to traditional marketing modes. The most successful marketers out there spend 40% of their total marketing budget on Content Marketing. Inbound leads cost 61% less than outbound leads in today’s market scenario. 82% of marketers who leverage inbound marketing experience a positive ROI impact. Besides, inbound marketing can double the average site conversion rate, from 6% to 12%. According to a study, 3 out of 4 inbound marketing channels cost less than any outbound marketing channel.

When you analyze both these strategies based on numbers, inbound marketing emerges as the ultimate winner. Having said that, it entirely depends on the nature of your organization and the industry before opting for inbound or outbound marketing techniques.

The Golden Rule of Content Marketing

The ultra-modern, yet, simple Inbound methodology revolves around a customer-centric golden rule. So, what is the golden rule of producing content or Inbound Marketing? Since this inbound marketing strategy has a lot to do with customers, the rule can be identified in proportion to the stages of customers. They include,

  • Reaching Out to Buyer Personas: The initial rule here is to attract customers to your site. In this stage, you devise a content strategy that addresses the real-life problems of customers. Here, your primary objective as a startup is to establish a link with the audience. By doing so, you enhance your brand awareness significantly.
  • The Transformation Touch: The crucial aspect that helps in the conversion of strangers to potential customers is this ‘Engage’ phase. Here, there arises a need for an efficient strategy in place for lead generation. The better your strategy & approach, the higher the chances of leads transforming into buyers. Practices like Email marketing, discussing customer expectations via chats/calls, etc., come under this stage.
  • The Final Push: After having let the customers know about your services/products, you engage them in a lively manner, convincing them to avail/buy your services/products from your organization. The real work of a startup begins right at this moment by ensuring that the customers are happy & satisfied with the product. Right from surveys to tracking social media response, you need to make sure that you are doing well when compared to your rivals.

As an emerging startup/established conglomerate, all you need to do is ensure that your strategy cracks this code efficiently. By doing so, you get to establish a successful brand for yourselves in the long run. If you’re unaware of how to visualize a world-class strategy for your startup, do not worry, we’ve got you covered. We have discussed explicitly the Inbound marketing strategy in the upcoming sections of the blog.

Top Examples of Inbound Marketing

Now that you have identified the effectiveness of inbound marketing and its simplified approach, it is time to materialize the technique. Here are some top inbound marketing examples to get you started.

#1 Blogs

Blogs are inevitably the first thought that splashes our minds when we hear about Content Marketing or Inbound Marketing. Blogs are highly effective that marketers who utilize blogs are 13x more likely to get a positive ROI. Blogs can be an ideal way to help solve customer problems, and, by doing so, letting them know that you offer premium services/products. Highly informative blogs can be shared across social media, boosting your online presence and widening your visibility to a larger audience.

#2 eBook

eBooks are a great way to build authoritativeness to your website. In exchange for your high-quality, highly-informative content, you increase your subscribers’ list. While blogs are simple and less time-consuming, eBooks are significantly complex and involve dedication for a long period of time. According to a report, 63% of customers prefer to avail of services from an authentic brand, and ebooks can help you get one step closer to achieve authenticity.

#3 Video series

Another efficient way to turn the wind towards your website is by producing compelling video lectures/series. With people leaning towards the visual medium over the reading medium, video marketing is a great strategy that can promise huge returns. Moreover, you can repurpose your best-performing blogs into a video, thereby enhancing its audience base substantially. Just so you know, 87% of the marketing professionals use video as an effective marketing tool.

An All-encompassing Website Content Strategy

After having discussed Inbound marketing, content marketing, its types, approach, etc., it is time to devise the all-important content strategy for your website. An all-encompassing website content strategy can be an ideal way to bridge the gap between your business and customers. However, developing a content strategy for your organization is no easy feat. You need assistance from an expert technical team to craft the best strategy. The steps involved include,

  • Assemble a best-in-class team: Ensure that your team includes personnel from different sectors. Your team must include different peers like content marketers, SEO analysts, graphic designers, copywriters, business analysts, etc. Proceeding with your strategy after gaining inputs from numerous team members can help you achieve the end-result without any hassle.
  • Decide and fix your buyer persona: Success will remain a distant fruit until you visualize your buyer persona before targeting your customers. Your buyer persona is an imaginary audience who’ll benefit from your product/services. Curate every piece of content by keeping this persona in mind, thereby establishing relevance among your intended customers.
  • Ask a Lot of Questions: Ask the right set of questions and provide solutions to them to strike a chord with the audience. You can follow the 5Ws and 1H methods to bring the best out of any problem. 5Ws include Why, What, When, Who, and Where. 1H includes How. This way, you get to approach a problem comprehensively and develop content appropriately.
  • Leverage SEO: There’s a huge misconception about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) but the good news is SEO isn’t dead. At the end of the day, you produce content to appear on top of users’ search results. As a result, make the best use of keywords, meta descriptions, etc., to optimize your content and stay competitive in the market.
  • Social media is the next big thing: Do not miss out on the opportunity to hit the jackpot as an average Internet user has 8 social media accounts. Besides, 40% of the world’s population (3 billion people) use social media. As icing on the cake, people are spending a whopping 2 hours and 22 minutes on social media platforms every day. Needless to say, Social media marketing campaigns are highly effective, considering you target the right set of audience.

Call it a wrap!

We hope this blog would have helped you out comprehensively in gaining crucial knowledge & insights on inbound marketing and its subset content marketing. It’s time to steer your organization towards positive growth and massive success by leveraging this evergreen marketing technique. What are you waiting for? Let your content do the talking!

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