Content marketing is an incredibly effective tool within marketing and is quickly becoming one of the most popular and most successful strategies within a marketing campaign (if it hasn’t already!). It’s used by many big businesses, and companies like Red Bull and Coca Cola are some of the best at the strategy.
But if you’re a smaller business, don’t be disheartened - content marketing is definitely something you can utilise despite your size. We actually think content marketing can sometimes work best for smaller sized companies. Here are 5 reasons why we think content marketing is still important for small businesses and start-ups.
When it comes down to it, content marketing is one for the long-haul. It is subtle, discreet and actually often fun. The truth is that consumers have become immune to traditional adverts and direct selling tactics. It’s even common for visitors to actively stop buying from a brand because their marketing is too in-your-face or direct. This is where content marketing comes in.
With content marketing, you produce things like blog posts and videos which usually give your customers value and information. Yes, in effect, you are giving your customers and clients something for free. So what do you get out of it? The beauty of content marketing is that it attracts visitors to your website and then if it is good enough, it will retain those visitors and they will keep coming back to consume your regular content because it has given them something valuable to take away.
In all honesty, this doesn’t even scratch the surface with what content marketing does, so don’t forget to keep an eye out for further blog posts in this series. But for now, why can it be good for small businesses or start-ups?
1. Content Marketing can help with growth …
In its purest form, content marketing drives traffic to your website. In turn, this builds your customer base. More customers - more growth!
How it drives traffic is through multiple steps. The surface-level step is that people who were visiting your website to start with will consequently visit your blog or videos as well. They won’t be able to resist the new extra content!
Secondly, your content can be shared on social media (both by you and your customers). It can attract new visitors if you use relevant hashtags and if the right people share it. Also, if your content goes viral, even better!
Lastly, content marketing is food for hungry search engines. Search engines like Google will crawl your website and put your blog posts and videos in their search results pages. So if you write a guide on ‘how to make a pair of sandals’, then if somebody searches this on Google, your post may be brought up. There you have new traffic!
Growth is so important for smaller businesses. It’s how you survive and subsequently thrive. Bringing in more traffic is how you can grow.
2. Content Marketing helps establish you as an industry thought leader …
If you are regularly producing high-quality, informative and valuable blog posts, you can be quickly seen as a company who knows their stuff.
Depending on your industry, using content marketing as a strategy to provide information can be a tool that can push your company over others - especially if your rivals don’t produce these kinds of informative guides.
Show off your knowledge! A common misconception is that if you show off all of your knowledge and expertise, prospective customers will just go and follow your advice without your help. This is rare. What will probably happen is that somebody will read your advice, be pumped and say that they’re going to do a, b & c but then they either forget or re-prioritise. But they will still remember how important it is (if you’ve stressed it enough). Then, they will remember that your company actually knows how to do it and that you seem like the best in the industry and will hire you or buy your goods.
If you act and pretend like you’re Microsoft or McDonalds within your guides, customers will easily forget that you’re a start-up or a small business that is 1% of the size!
3. Content Marketing can help you learn more about your industry …
Now another great reason why we love content marketing is because we learn so much about the industry ourselves in the process of doing it. This is particularly useful for smaller businesses and start-ups because you might even be new to the industry that you’re in.
When you want to produce content marketing, you will want to do plenty of research and within this research you might find a new strategy for your sector or you might find a new perspective. Building a start-up is all a learning curve and content marketing is perfect to aid in this learning.
Another reason why content is good for learning is because, at times, you will get feedback. Both positive and negative can be constructive and can help you in your sector.
4. Content Marketing can help build a community ...
When you’re a small business or a start-up, you will probably have a smaller customer base. This will be even more apparent if you’re on Facebook or Twitter. But this can definitely be a positive.
A smaller collection of followers has the potential to be a much more engaged community. Content marketing can be a great catalyst for this. Sharing a thoughtful post can incite conversation, questions and anecdotes.
If you encourage this kind of engagement, get involved yourself and moderate it appropriately then a bubbling new community can emerge. This tip also shows how content marketing and social media go hand in hand. How can you use them to advantage each other? Through establishing a community!
If a visitor gets involved with your brand enough, they are more likely to purchase your goods or services because they have more trust in you and they will be more comfortable around your company. A small business or a start-up has such an advantage here!
5. Content Marketing can help build trust for your business ...
Following on from the last section, content marketing is great for building trust. If you give your customers something of value, like a list of top tips or an informative guide, they will trust that you know what you’re talking about and that your products or services will also be of high quality.
For a small business or start-up, trust is so important and can be a huge asset. It’s common for prospective customers to go to a rival just because a company is a start-up - despite your high experience or quality of service.
Giving these prospective customers some useful information in the form of a handy guide can go a long way to establishing trust. It might be the thing that pushes them from ‘prospective customer’ to ‘customer’.
Ready to take on content marketing?
We encourage you to consider dipping your toes in with content marketing because it can be a huge marketing asset for businesses in today’s digital marketing landscape. Use your small size as an advantage and content marketing can help you grow!
If you want any further help with your content marketing or want us to manage your campaign, then don’t hesitate to send us a quick message. We’re always happy to help!