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August 08, 2016
As a business owner, you have engaged in many of the mainstream, old-school marketing techniques to help your business along. Some of these practices may include distribution of a press release to the media to announce a grand opening, new product/service or even the fulfillment of a position. Other practices may include a local ad in a paper, traditional mail-outs or even some online advertising.
None of these marketing efforts are "incorrect," but you should be adopting some of the new, evolved ways for locally targeting your market--including content marketing. This holds particularly true if you are a small community business. You may have heard that little voice in the back of your head saying "I'm only a small community business, how would content marketing benefit me?"
That's certainly a good question. If you and your business are currently not engaging in content marketing, you are actually in the small minority of businesses that are not using it. According to an article published at Entrepreneur.com ("What You Need to Know to Improve Your Content Marketing"), a staggering 88 percent of business to business marketers engage in content marketing. These businesses are allocating, on average, nearly 28% of their marketing budget for it, according to the Content Marketing Institute.
Those who cater to the consumer are not far off, with slightly fewer using content marketing as part of their strategy (76%), however they are spending more of their budget doing so (32%).
At 24-7 Press Release Newswire, we recognize that content marketing requires the same type of quality, valuable content that a press release does. Why is that?
Quality content is important in order for people to pay attention, the content should be engaging, provide useful, valuable information and position the authors as people in the know. Simply using a press release distribution service and getting a press release to the media does not guarantee results. You need to have a content plan and do a good job of implementing it.
Content marketing may be today's new marketing buzz phrase, but it really is nothing new. It only seems like it is new because the channels in which to distribute your news and methodologies have changed. Content marketing, as a model, has existed since the late 1700s!
A more recent example, from 1904, but still way before the internet, proves our point. You don't have to look any further than the company that makes Jell-O. They used to distribute free copies of its first Jell-O recipe book, according to an infographic we came across over at 'unbounce.com'. The infographic demonstrates that offering this free recipe book containing Jell-O-based recipes contributed to a sales increase of over $1 million by 1906! How's that for an example of content marketing? More recent examples include LEGO launching their Bick Kicks magazine (1987), which is now known as 'LEGO Club magazine. These examples demonstrate that delivering valuable, engaging content--that showcases the brand and the company--will encourage people to buy. It's important to note that content marketing doesn't require a salesy pitch. Rather, the product sells itself by being useful and beneficial.
Here's another example: "I'm a local pasta making place, how am I supposed to partake in content marketing?" This is an easy one. You make pasta. You put together a few easy recipes that are quick to put together and you publish them on your Facebook. Take it a step further. Follow what some sites like 'Tasty' do and put together a video showing how to make the dish. Show how easy it is, then display your pasta and at the end, and have some information where your pasta may be purchased. Friends will share that information. When they share it, your business will become more visible and desirable.
You could also write a "content marketing press release." Distribute your press release to the local media, or even nationally through a business like 24-7PressRelease.com. Include useful information about how your pasta is great because you use Durham wheat, and how it is organic, or how you use ancient grains or whatever. Include a recipe in your press release along with a standard quote. Don't forget to include images and of course a link to the recipe on your website. Include this in the body of your press release.
Although content marketing has been around for eons, the mixing-in of your content marketing with a press release and your social media is really the way people recognize brands and businesses today. The examples above are very simple ways to think of how to use it. Get creative. You know your customers best. You know what type of information is useful to them.
The key factor to remember is for your content marketing not to hard sell your product. The more information you write that is helpful, the greater the bond of trust there will be and your business will begin to thrive naturally.