Five winning ways small businesses can leverage content marketing
If you’re a small business owner, you’ve probably been doing some type of content marketing from the day you opened the door for business. Content marketing takes many forms—from a feature article in your local newspaper to a corporate blog—but all of it has the same ultimate objective: to influence opinions and boost your business.
The Internet has changed marketing and has leveled the playing field somewhat for small businesses to better compete against larger companies. While many online marketing tactics are universally useful, others can be particularly helpful for smaller businesses.
Here are five ways you can leverage online content marketing to benefit your small business:
1. Build brand awareness
You could have the best product or service in your field, but if no one knows your company exists, quality will be pointless. Online content marketing can help you create awareness of your company and brand. Unlike straight advertising, which overtly sells your product or service, online content marketing such as feature articles, blogs and social media can be a subtle way to raise awareness of who you are and what your company does. Rather than deliver a specific sales message, content marketing can keep your company front-of-mind, so that when a customer is ready to spend, they’ll think of you first. Feature articles, like those distributed by Brandpoint, a content marketing services provider, can be particularly powerful for raising public awareness and enhancing your search engine optimization efforts.
2. Broaden your customer base and get found online
If you market in the same media using the same tactics year after year you’ll only ever reach the same people. Online content marketing opportunities are constantly evolving, opening up new possibilities every day for getting your message out to new markets. One important part of this is the content that’s available on your website. Optimized content, whether it’s on your homepage, your corporate blog or another section of your site, will help ensure that search engines can find and deliver your website to interested potential customers who may have never heard of you before. The amount of information available on the web is immense; the right SEO content on your site will push your company to the top of an online search.
3. Solidify existing relationships
Loyal customers often require an incentive for remaining loyal. Online content marketing can help provide that motivation. For example, offering followers of your blog a special discount or emailing a coupon to current customers who sign up online can do more than just boost sales. It can reward current customers, let them know their loyalty is appreciated and make them more inclined to stay loyal.
4. Promote a specific product, service or event
For targeted promotions, online content marketing can be a cost-effective tool that allows you to reach the broadest possible spectrum of customers. Social media can be especially helpful in promoting a specific product, service or event. This type of content marketing allows you full control over the information you share, and invites customers—both current and potential—to engage in a conversation about what you’re promoting.
5. Test something new
Online content marketing gives you the opportunity to test new tactics and tools. For example, you can survey blog followers for their opinion on new product offerings or development plans, or post a sample of new advertising materials on your Facebook page to measure customer response.