In the world of digital marketing, content is the foundation for which ALL BUSINESS SUCCESS is built upon. Whether you’re showcasing your expertise, enticing people to join your list, or marketing a product, your content has to be effective and engaging.
While your competitors may be focused on nothing more than keywords and volume, you’ll be focused on the best way you can better serve your target audience (and simultaneously earn the favor of search engines in the process).
By wasting time with sloppy content marketing practices, the only result you will see is your momentum coming to a grinding halt. Not only will search bots bury your content for its lack of quality, but the human visitors who do end up seeing your poor content will shun you in favor of your competitors who are focused on providing value.
In this article we will go over the ten basic rules of great content marketing practices, benefiting your readers and you well when it comes to generating traffic and getting signups and sales.
#1 Keep Your Goal in Mind
The first rule for creating great content for your marketing campaigns is to always have a purpose for your content. If you don’t have an objective of outcome, you’re writing without a direction and leaving your readers or viewers clueless as well.
There are many different pieces of advice about writing with purpose. Some will tell you to focus on who your audience is – the demographic and how you can help them, whether they’re young, old, rich or poor, or any specific thing you can think of.
It does help to know your audience before writing so that you can tailor your content to their needs, but that’s not enough. You need to know the role your content will play in your business and in the lives of your audience.
Think about what it is you want to accomplish with the specific piece of content. It doesn’t matter if it’s an infographic, an eBook, or a live webinar – you need to have a metric that you can look at to see if your content efforts were successful.
If you want to increase sales, then you’d better know your current sales numbers and have a specific dollar amount to aim for. If you want to add subscribers, have a number you can try achieve.
Besides demographics and the volume of your audience, you also want to have a goal for how you intend to make them feel and what action you want them to take. Should they walk away feeling motivated or capable?
Is your goal to engage them in a way where they respond to you in he comments section or share and like your content with others? Or, is your goal just to continue serving them in terms of education and information so that you retain them as your followers?
If you want to convert visitors into buyers, that’s another specific goal you may have. But it’s not the only goal for marketers when creating content. Sometimes your purpose is to inform your people about something new – to make them aware of a strategy, for example.
#2 Research is Your Friend
The second rule you need to abide by as a successful content marketer is to always conduct thorough research. There are many marketers who simply provide what they can think of off the top of their head. I myself have been guilty of this from time to time.
However, a good leader always goes out and gathers information for their subscribers that they may not have been aware of. There are always new strategies, tools, and ideas being discussed in almost every niche.
Even if you know the same type of information, there might be someone out there who is conveying it in a different way. Because of this, the target audience is getting a different take on the same general information.
In many niches, there are more trends and evolution than in others. For example, niches that often see new trends include things like weight loss and gardening. One season you may see a spike in information about keto diets and container gardening, and another season you may see a spike in trends for calorie deficit dieting and raised bed gardens.
There are some niches that don’t see as much change, for example, the financial niche is basically the same formula of getting out of debt, repairing your credit, and earning more.
You want to find different ways to gather research than you may be used to. For example, if you only looked for news articles in Google previously, you want to expand on your research methods so that you can become aware of more cutting edge information to share with your audience. Google is certainly not the ultimate authority in many niches.
Don’t just look online. Have your eyes peeled for offline indications of trends and news within the niche. You might find things at your grocery store on the shelves or on the covers of magazines that alert you to changes in your niche.
Make sure you are looking at different forms of media. Don’t just look for text based news articles. Also listen to podcasts about your niche and watch videos on YouTube or TikTok that will give you a more comprehensive understanding of your niche topic.