Getting traffic to your website is anything but effortless. While traditional marketing strategies that focus on the outbound effort do work well, they are often particularly challenging for brand new startups. Common standard channels like google Adwords, and email marketing are proven effective – but definitely require at least some kind of a budget to get results. The answer to this quandary is content marketing! Fast and free to create, content marketing is the complete 180 from standard channels. Critics call content marketing “fluff” and accuse it as being a waste of time, asking “why spend a second on an activity that simply won’t close the deal?” Because it will.
About Content Marketing
Going back to the earliest days of mass-marketing in the 1920s, traditional marketing efforts have always been about the “push” – pushing a message or product onto people as they go about their business. As consumers attempt to deflect your efforts, you can still get through if you push hard enough and your message is persuasive enough. On the contrary, Content marketing is the absolution opposite – focusing completely on the “pull.” This means pulling people to your website with non-marketing content, like original educational materials, or even humor. When you become a resource and not t “product pimp” your entire relationship with your customers changes – and you don’t spend your time pushing anything on anyone.
Now that you’re ready to pose yourself as the knowledgeable expert on a given topic, you have to change your writing from that of an advertiser to that of a consumer. It’s easy to get caught in the “push” mentality when you’re creating content for your customers, but resist this urge. Change your lens to that of someone who is online, and immediately deflects any content that seems like an advertisement. You have to basically provide something for free: and that something is knowledge. Only when you’ve gained the credibility of being a knowledge resource can you begin to leverage this traffic to your benefit.
This is a subtle process for sure. Even if you have a somewhat loyal following for your great industry content, it can all come crashing down if one of your posts turns into some cheesy blatant advertisement. However, this absolutely doesn’t mean you can’t benefit from your content marketing… why else would you be doing all this??!! Here’s an example of a good way to leverage traffic to your benefit:
· If you’re an electronics dealer, run a series of reviews on LED TV’s for several weeks, or even a month at a time.
· Make your content original and useful, offer perspectives not previously cited in 150 other locations
· Toward the end of your series of posts, place a tasteful banner ad for a % off deal on LED TV’s in the margin of your blog page.
Think about it, your followers are already trusting you as their main resource for all thing LED TV – who do you think they’re going to turn to when it’s time to buy?
Content Marketing is a marketing strategy that you can implement like any deliberate effort, but you can’t fake it. It’s more of a mindset than a strategy really, and when you are able to transition yourself from thinking about pushing products, to thinking about pulling followers – you’ll be there. With time as your only cost, start doing an hour a week of content marketing and see where it gets you: you might be surprised how much money there is to gain!
Author : Tyler Watkins is a Marketing Manager at PrintingForLess.com. He enjoys learning and sharing knowledge about online marketing.