Over the last few years content marketing has grown substantially. Companies are recognizing the power of telling a story, solving problems and entertaining on the web. Tactically, content marketing provides benefits that span across the many disciplines of Internet marketing, too. It can improve and increase most of the positive metrics associated with website success while minimizing or eliminating those negative metrics. It also powers most successful social media marketing campaigns. From referral traffic to lead conversions, content marketing is the jet fuel powering many of the top web destinations in the world. In order to deploy content marketing successfully, consider these 14 C’s:
- Content – There is no content marketing without content. Content can take many forms, including blog posts, videos, podcasts, webinars, press releases, infographics, newsletters, whitepapers, downloads, guides, cheat sheets, ezines, ebooks, etc. The more diverse the deployment the better.
- Consistency – In order to be successful, content must be deployed consistently. This can be three times per week, three times per day or somewhere in between. According to HubSpot, the number of customers acquired through a blog is directly related to blog post frequency. Being consistent in content marketing will make customer acquisition more consistent, too.
- Continuous – Content marketing isn’t a campaign rolled out and ended over the course of a few months only to be started up again a year later. It’s an ongoing deployment that evolves, adjusts and tells the story of a brand overtime.
- Congruency – There should never be a message conflict within or between content marketing efforts and other marketing efforts. Mixed messaging can have a negative effect on lead acquisition.
- Clarity – The takeaway from published content should be clear and the title should, at a minimum, hint to the value proposition.
- Consumers – Content should focus on the brand’s consumers, prospective consumers or influencers of consumers. Identify their problems, solve them with content and tell a story.
- Contagiousness – Good problem solving and/or entertaining content should be contagious. Make sure it’s easily shared via social media by including share buttons on content pages.
- Compounding – After staring at more than two years’ worth of analytics, it is clear that content marketing substantially benefits both search engine and referral traffic to a website. It is also clear that traffic and conversion increases from these sources compound and gain momentum over time and are directly related to publishing frequency.
- Compulsory – Given the current state of SEO, content marketing isn’t optional for doing well in search engines anymore. It’s an absolute requirement for maximizing the number of keywords that drive traffic to a website.
- Cooperation – It’s not necessary to solely rely on internal staff to develop content. In fact, it’s a good idea to bring in a vendor to help offset content production gaps. It’s also recommended to have a guest contributor program to actively seek out influencers and industry experts to help contribute to the content marketing campaign. Lastly, don’t forget to get buy-in from the top down. Good content marketing campaigns have contributions from the CEO to the engineer.
- Capacity – The capacity to produce content is limited in every organization. It’s important to develop programs that help increase a company’s publishing capacity. That can include an incentive program for employees to participate, hiring new people, outsourcing, user generated content, ghost writers, etc.
- Capital – This is hard for many to believe, but the content produced in a content marketing campaign can be an appreciable asset. It’s the gift that keeps on giving – Capital. Google and the other search engines may continue to drive traffic to a content page for years after publication. Referring websites that link to the content will most likely maintain that link forever. Lastly, the content produced, regardless of when, can be shared with prospects by the sales staff so to overcome objections in order to nurture prospects down the funnel.
- Concurrency – With capacity being a challenge across all organizations, it is critical to create content concurrently. Most call this content repurposing. Rather than making one stand-alone slide presentation for a webinar, consider taking each slide and using it to produce blog posts. Also, consider taking a series of blog posts and using it to create a whitepaper. The possibilities are virtually endless. The key is to identify up front in the content production process how many different types of content can come out of one or more finished products. Have a repurposing plan and schedule.
- Calendar – Saving the best for last, a content publishing schedule, complete with due dates, topics and go-live dates, is critical to successful content marketing. It holds people accountable and keeps things moving forward.
If the above 14 C’s are considered, acted upon and landing pages deployed, the content marketing campaign will improve website traffic, conversions, leads and, ultimately, customers. The only exception to this is if the quality of the content is poor. Even in the cases where the content isn’t very palatable, modest improvements may follow.
However, if an organization can’t create quality content and tell a story around their own expertise and passion, they probably aren’t very good at what they do. No amount of content marketing will fix that. For more help with content marketing using a blog, download our Blog Post Optimization Playbook.
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