Tag Archives: content marketing strategy

Content Marketing and the Building Products Industry: What You Need to Know

27 Jun

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Content marketing is the driving force behind engaging those customers that are most likely to purchase your products. Rather than overtly selling to them and hoping that your tactics prompt them to make a purchase, you provide them with information that is valuable and engaging. Here’s how to make content marketing work for you.

1. Make a Plan

You won’t be able to determine if your methods are working without a solid plan and its supporting goals in place. Identifying your ideal audience is also a key factor during the planning phase. Your goals and audience are what fuel the plan you adopt.

2. Create Your Content

Once you have a solid plan hammered out, you can create content that addresses the goals you established and the audience you identified. It’s important to note here that you’ll likely have more than one audience in mind so your content might need to target one group at a time in order to be engaging. The creation of the appropriate content means lots of time researching and developing timely and value-driven information.

3. Develop a Promotional Strategy

While posting the content you’ve developed on your website is a solid first step in your content marketing strategy, don’t forget to go further. Tapping into the reach of social media channels expands the exposure of your brand, increases your reputation and improves your bottom line.

4. Implement Measuring Tools

All the content marketing in the world won’t continue to help your business grow and reach new audiences unless you know it’s working. Implementing measuring tools that rely on data and analytics is the key to your strategy’s success. Web analytics and key performance indicators (KPIs) deliver a numbers-based picture of your efforts. Looking over the areas where your content is weakest provides the information you need to fine tune your efforts.

Content marketing is a fluid and changing medium that allows you to more finely focus your efforts. The four-step process outlined above provides a workable road map for developing a content marketing strategy for your building products company.

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Mid-Year Review: Is Your Content Marketing Strategy Working?

8 Jun

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A mid-year review for your content marketing strategy gives you a heads-up about its performance thus far. While some people might approach such a task with the kind of dread that typically accompanies mid-year reviews for employees, not taking the time to do it now could mean wasted time and opportunities if you only do it at the end of the year.

1. Are you still reaching your audience?

Are your efforts still keeping up with the action plan that was developed as part of your content marketing strategy? Make sure that these efforts are reaching your ideal customer. Check to see that the audience you are targeting hasn’t changed due to industry or economic factors.

2. Identify any areas that need to be changed

Has your most successful marketing campaign so far been in shared content – social media, referrals or word of mouth, for example – but your greatest expenditures are aimed toward paid content such as banner ads? If so, it might be time to take a look at evening up the budget a bit so you can build on your successes more easily.

3. Align with your sales team

Check in with your sales team to be sure that the goals of your content marketing campaign match your sales goals. Bring your observations to the next sales meeting to gather data from the front lines of sales to make sure that everyone is aligned toward the same goals.

4. Do a refresh and update on your website

If your website has been on autopilot since the beginning of the year, it’s probably overdue for a refresh and update on the content. Even if the content you had up was popular in January, it might not hold the same appeal now that mid year is approaching.

5. Get a handle on the data

The analytics and data gained by parsing your website’s metrics needs to be put to use. The basic four areas that you need to concentrate on – content downloads, page views, conversion rates and social shares – form the foundation of your marketing strategy.

There’s no doubt about it, your content marketing strategy isn’t something that you can simply forget about once it’s in place. In order to be successful, you need to constantly access and review its effectiveness.

ER Marketing combines numerous core competencies to develop the ideal content marketing strategy for your business. Turning this aspect of its success over to the professionals allows you to concentrate more fully on growing your business. Contact ER Marketing today to learn more.

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Dos and Don’ts of Content Marketing

1 Jun

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Content marketing is an important element in an overarching marketing strategy. And according to statistics by the Content Marketing Institute, you aren’t alone in your efforts if you employ it as a tactic; about 90 percent of small businesses and B2B companies do. However, as the Content Marketing Institute also notes, only six percent of B2B marketers rate their organization’s efforts as being “very effective.” Bridging the gap between effort and results means taking a hard look at your content marketing strategy to make sure you’re doing what you can to make it effective.

DO: Have a Strategy

Just like any other business action, your content marketing efforts need a definitive strategy. Even if you aren’t sure what your strategy should be, you should at least have something. As strange as it might seem, even a bad strategy is better than nothing at all. At least it gives you a benchmark from which to measure success and failure. You can also use a bad strategy to build a better one by tweaking the parts that aren’t performing as expected.

DO: Fund Content Marketing

Even the most iron-clad and proven content marketing strategy isn’t going to work as effectively as you’d hope if it isn’t funded well. Just like other efforts within your business, the more money you earmark for content marketing, the better the results you can expect. As the Content Marketing Institute points out, the most effective B2B content marketers spend more than twice as much on content marketing as those that are least effective – 39 percent and 16 percent respectively. Fortunately, more than 50 percent note that they plan to increase spending on their content marketing budget over the next 12 months.

DON’T: Put Content Up Without Thinking it Through

Yes, content marketing involves producing lots of content, but it shouldn’t be just any old content. Your content should be very engaging and targeted to the audience that you are appealing to. It needs to be informative and well written. It needs to leave the reader with valuable knowledge that is in-depth and encourages them to reach out to you for more information.

DON’T: Forget to Develop Buyer Personas

Buyer personas are an effective way to put a human twist to your content marketing. By developing a generic “person” who represents the behaviors, concerns, needs and choices of your ideal customer, your content marketing strategy will be sharper and more focused.

ER Marketing handles all aspects of a successful marketing strategy by crafting one that meets your unique needs. We’d love to show you how we can help you! Contact us today!

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Guest Blogging is the X Factor of Your Content Marketing Strategy

30 May

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Guest blogging is one of the most underrated forms of inbound marketing. Most companies assume that posting social media content, updating their website, and adding content to their blog every couple of weeks will suffice. Though these are solid inbound marketing strategies, they will be greatly enhanced with the addition of guest blog posts.

The Exposure Your Business Needs

Guest blog posts strategically placed on handpicked websites can work wonders for your business. Though many question whether guest blog posts have any sort of effect on the target audience, the evidence proves they really do steer traffic to the author’s website. This is especially true when the guest blog post contains intriguing content. Most people think of guest bloggers as experts who donate their time and effort to another website because they have an abundance of expertise, advice and insight. Such a perception automatically triggers immediate respect. Those who read or even skim the guest blog post will be inclined to click the hyperlink to your website and/or social media. The key is that the guest blog post gets your name and your business in front of people who have already expressed an interest in your products and/or services. This is the vitally important exposure your business needs to increase traffic to your site and social media platforms. These visits will gradually turn into the conversion of customers, many of whom will do business with you across the long haul.

Guest Blogging Establishes You as an Expert

Part of the magic of guest blogging is that it portrays you and your company as a source of authority, and people respect those in an authoritative position. As long as your guest blog post contains meaningful content that helps the target audience in some manner, you will be respected. This respect leads to additional website/social media attention and consequently, more business.

If you do not have the confidence, time, or energy to craft high-quality blog posts that engage your target audience, do not fret! Outsource the work to content creation professionals so you have a steady stream of informative blog posts to publish in corners of the internet where your target audience is most likely to visit. The end result will be an enhanced perception of your company’s expertise, an increase in traffic to your website and a positive impact on your bottom line.

Time Your Guest Blog Posts in a Strategic Manner

Do not haphazardly publish guest blog posts across the web at any point in time. The timing of these posts’ publication is of critical importance. Release your guest blog posts in tandem with your social media pushes, on-page SEO efforts and the addition of original content to your website. These important pieces to the inbound marketing puzzle will work in unison to cast as wide of a net as possible and attract target prospects. Keep in mind that many such prospects will check out other aspects of your online presence as a means of gauging your company’s merit. Many will skim your social media pages, blog, website and beyond before making the decision to provide you with their business.

Guest Blogging is Cheaper Than Paid Ads

Sometimes it can make more sense to blog than to rely solely on paid online ads. The beauty of guest blogging is that it connects your business to parties that are already interested in what you offer. This important exposure connects you to those who can really add to your bottom line. The best part is that it is free. At worst, it will require that you provide the website owner with the opportunity to publish a guest blog on your own blog.

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How to Diversify Your Content Strategy

20 Apr

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Content marketing of one or two varieties will only take you so far. The key to making a meaningful impact on your target audience is diverse content. An engaging blog with a steady stream of insightful posts lays the foundation. However, one blog post after another won’t prove sufficient in the quest to turn prospects into loyal clients. Every business needs to build on blog material with balanced content to gain traction with their target audience.

  1. Audiences are Becoming Increasingly Selective

Contemporary audiences are quite sophisticated. While some are willing to read 1,000 word blog posts, many prefer videos, images, social media and other forms of online content. It is imperative that your business achieves the right mix of content to appeal to a wide variety of prospective clients. Key in on creating helpful and engaging content for each buyer persona at every point of the “buying funnel” and your business will establish itself as legitimate in the eyes of as many prospective clients as possible.

  1. Don’t Produce Marketing Material Simply for Content’s Sake

If your content creation team generates new content on a regular basis, it won’t make many inroads with prospects unless it is highly unique. Google penalizes websites that contain generic and weak content. So don’t develop any old content for the sake of having a regularly updated blog, social media website or other online presence. Key in on which style of online content your target audience desires. Content style and the platform it is hosted on will help you attain your goals of enhanced search engine optimization, the generation of new sales leads, boosting brand awareness, increasing conversions etc.

  1. Ways to Diversity Online Content

The number of online platforms available for content marketing continues to increase. Though blogs and social media are the basis for most content marketing strategies, all sorts of other content is proving critically important. Consider expanding your online marketing footprint with an eBook, white paper, educational webinar, video, Instagram presence and beyond. Even a live video stream of your product or service in action will help connect with prospective clients.

  1. A Wide Range of Voices

Part of diversifying online content is making each piece unique. If an audience reads, hears or sees the same style of content over and over again, they will eventually tune out.  Reach out to professional freelance and other content marketing professionals to create idiosyncratic content. These diverse viewpoints, voices and ideas will help expand your brand to a wide array of prospective clients. A well-rounded team of writers, creative thinkers and content generators will also serve to produce a dynamic message that doesn’t sound repetitive or stale.

  1. Take Risks

The challenge of content marketing partly lies in your abaility to gain exposure to new audiences. Switch things up by contributing a guest post to an industry partner or another business that plays a role in your industry. Make sure the piece contains a “backlink” to your website/blog so web traffic can be redirected for your benefit. Reciprocate by allowing other businesses to post a guest blog article to your website/blog with its own backlink. Record a podcast, create some slideshares, infographics or research reports. Even something unconventional like a tutorial video or a video featuring company leaders/employees will serve as refreshing content that further engages your target audience in an intriguing way.

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