The undeniable impact content marketing has on business
It was the most exciting, delicious Grand Opening ever... until it wasn't.
A new restaurant opened its doors just down the street from my office. Thrilled, I stopped by on the first day. Despite a slight wait, the food and service couldn’t have been better. In fact, I wrote a Yelp review to give the team a little online love.
Unfortunately, something odd soured what should have been the beginning of many great experiences.
About a week after tasting the exquisite cuisine, I popped by again at the same time as before. The eatery was closed. Not permanently, but still closed. In vain, I searched the window for hours of operation. Nothing. “It’s okay,” I told my disappointed self, belly rumbling. “I’ll try again.” Yet a few days later, the same thing happened.
What I realized by my fourth (and final) visit was that the restaurant wasn’t catering to me at all. It was catering to its owners' whims and desires. Yes, they delivered what I wanted, but they couldn't commit to a repeat performance.
The taste in my mouth? Bitter, at best.
Earning a spot at the successful content table
The previous story sounds ridiculous. Nonetheless, it’s an illustration of what many businesses do with their content marketing.
Far too many otherwise brilliant marketers and founders initially push out one or two incredible written or broadcast gems that whet readers’ appetites. Then, they inexplicably go dark for days, weeks, or months.
Without a doubt, inconsistency is the number one biggest content marketing faux pas made across the board. Startups, mid-sized businesses, and enterprises can all succumb to this form of self-sabotage. Sure, they know that content marketing works three times better than paying for ads. Regardless, their inbound content marketing campaigns and efforts lack momentum and predictability.
It is impossible to effectively track, tweak, test, or tout marketing content if it isn’t consistently developed and published. Like the hungry patron at the beginning of this post, the public simply won’t wait around forever for new information. Instead, they thrive on regularity. Among our Microsoft partners, the most successful organizations practice a steady stream of reliable content that keeps people engaged. This enables them to stay on the radar because users are more apt to follow and subscribe if you offer them a sense of routine rather than randomness. If you’re looking for more content, Qorus Content Hub allows Microsoft partners to access an array of helpful, relevant content to incorporate into their business communications.
Does this mean you have to pump out content like the line cook at a busy restaurant? Not at all. Even though eMarketer statistics reveal 60% of marketing professionals report creating at least one content item daily, you can map out your own cadence. As long as the delivery is consistent and doesn’t force consumers to wait too long for new ideas, your inbound content marketing program should produce fruit.
Putting ingredients together for tasty results
Of course, you might be confused as to what content is currently sweeping the Internet. To be sure, any content from case studies and survey results to questionnaires and how-to videos can work, depending upon your audience’s target personas. These three elements have taken off lately that are proving to be long-lasting trends:
1. Power to the podcast.
Have you been tempted to set up a corporate podcast? Try it! Podcast publication has skyrocketed and shows no signs of slowing down. Plus, Edison research says podcast listeners have a habit of being 20% more willing to become followers on their favorite podcasters’ (and podcast publishers’) social media pages. For inspiration, visit Smart Partner Marketing, and check out our partner podcast series.
Best practice tip for podcasting: Amass a number of evergreen podcasts prior to your launch date. That way, you’ll have back-up podcasts ready so you never miss a release deadline.
2. Liven up with links.
When you’re writing your social media posts, be like Alice’s White Rabbit friend and lead readers down a trail via links. For example, pepper relevant content links into all your snappy or lengthy social media items. Not only will this increase shares and views, but it will also help your inbound marketing SEO efforts.
Best practice tip for linking: Make sure you link to content that jives with what you’re saying. Otherwise, your links won’t have any advantage for readers.
3. Bring back the blog.
Did your blog get dusty over the years? Was your last post in July 2017? Freshen up your blog by constructing an editorial calendar and following it to a T. Endeavor to release fascinating, fun, and informative hints, images, instructions, announcements, and more in a systematic way.
Best practice tip for blogging: When you feel like your well has gone dry, work with someone in our Microsoft Partner Network to form a guest post. You can also conduct written question-and-answer sessions to keep from falling behind in your content production and distribution.
Like a fine dish, great content marketing should always leave you hungry for more. Whether you’re new to the world of generating inbound content or have done it for decades, you can always benefit from a little upskilling and assistance. Our Go-To-Market Services and platforms like Digital Marketing Content OnDemand take the saltiness out of starting from scratch and add flavor to your sales funnel. Spice up your online presence with consistent, irresistible content aimed at satisfying even the hungriest consumers.