By Ayan Sarkar
Content, in the context of media, publication, and art, is the information and experience shared through a medium of speech, writing or another form of arts and is prepared for an end-user or audience. This method of sharing experiences is nothing new; it has been there in the society since the time people had known to talk and to share. It is in this digital age, that people are using it for something more important and vital, for something that would bring extra revenue to their business and for something which will bring them the right kind of reputation in the market that they had longed for. Unveiling the real world of content marketing, marketers today are always on a look-out to explore the wide business prospects that promise to enhance their growth opportunities excellently.
The term ‘content marketing’ is flooding the market with its extra cautious and overall compelling usage which promises to keep the companies, using it, at par with the rapidly increasing pace of the industry. The content today is being delivered to the consumers for consumption in different forms which include- audio, video and text. Spreading its arms all around the digital space- the search engine result pages, the web pages, YouTube, various social media platforms and the likes- content has proved its worth, time and again, with its powerful stand and the easy flow with which it grabs the attention of the target audience.
What Is Content Marketing?
Content Marketing is defined as a strategic marketing approach adopted by marketers by focusing on creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent information or content that can attract or retain the target audience and ultimately drive the profitable actions from them.
This is generally a long-term strategy whose result is also visible in the long-run. Consistent and thorough results are evident as the business will be able to develop a trust among their audiences.
The market has realized the importance of being able to communicate with their customers and thus they are focusing more on the content driven communication which makes it easier for them to hold on to the reputation-driven competition. The features of content which have efficiently contributed in making it a leading marketing strategy include:
- The level of engagement that it creates among audiences.
- The educative and marketing value that it adds to the business.
- Content shares the business culture with the market.
- It contributes to enhance the business’s digital result at a great level.
- It demonstrates the passion of the business about its customers.
- Content helps in strengthening the relationship with the audience.
Guidelines To Maintain Authenticity:
Although the internet is flooded with various types of content that one gets to read at any point of time, even while traveling. People don’t always tend to believe everything that they read on the internet. The main reason behind this is that whatever is published on the internet never goes through an editor. The facts are also not checked thoroughly before publishing the content which makes it even more critical for the audiences to believe on it. Another reason for the lack of trust on the online content is because the writers don’t maintain basic standards for properly attributing the sources from where they have selected the detail or the image that they are using in the content.
In order to maintain the trust of your audience and to charm a suspicious audience the following guidelines need to be followed thoroughly and has to be maintained over the time in order to build a loyal and trusting audience for your content:
- Support Your Words With Sources- Online content basically depends on people’s opinion, but your personality should be kept out. One should always support the words written in the content by using examples or facts that can support you.
- Make It Useful- You must always consider keeping your audience above your business goals. This makes the content helpful for the audiences.
- Include Both Sides Of The Story- Whether reporting a basic story or contemplating the overall usage of a new technology, content should include both sides of the story. The pros and cons and the perspective of both sides should be put forward to the audiences.
- Error-free Content- Spelling mistakes and grammatical errors should be avoided as much as possible. It makes the content error-free and helps in developing a trust for you in the market.
- Avoid Using Duplicates- Use of duplicate posts kills the authenticity of the business. It mars their reputation and also takes away their legitimacy. It is thus advised that every business should make it a point to use original, unique and plagiarism free content that would help them to establish their own unique identity in the market.
How To Make Your Content More Trustworthy?
Building a stronger relationship with customers or developing a loyal or trustworthy image of a business in the market requires an efficient marketing strategy which plays a key role in connecting the business with consumers. The content marketing here plays an imperative role in boosting consumer-business relationship and in building stronger business objectives for the enterprises.
The main objective of content marketing is to build trust among the audiences. Hone the trust elements in order to develop a strong and ideal position for the company in the market. The content marketers need to trail the following rules in order to improve the consumer trust in their business:
People generally trust other people far more than they trust the corporations. Yet, there are businesses that posts blogs with the corporate brands as the author. This is a mistake made by them. Sharing content with a proper name of the author, bylines, and bios about them, make it interesting for the audiences and also help them to trust on the write-up. It is important for businesses to establish some personal brands and use them so that the audiences can choose the authors they feel more connected with, can share their views on the blog and thus, establishing a close relationship with your businesses.
Real substance and authoritative power are added to your writing as you start citing authorities on the matter and include references to support the data you furnish from an external source. This will make your content seem stronger and gives the idea that it is better researched and becomes more reliable for the audiences. The more reliable the source, the better the content is scheduled to perform in the market.
Personal Experiences Matters
Although outside sources help to support your content, but it is the personal experiences that make the content even more trustworthy. It is the key to formulate your content in an engaging way for your audiences. The personal experience must be described in details if the entire event is relevant to the context of the content. Only then it will make sense to the readers and will click with them.
Use of Quantitative Data
The quality of content is always something that attracts the readers, but it is the quantitative data that persuades them. Logical information sans quantitative data makes no sense. Numbers and percentage always help to make your content more relevant and trustworthy. It is a powerful strategy that paves the way for your content in the reader’s mind.
Avoid Attention-Grabbing Gimmicks
Although it might be tempting for you to earn more visibility through gimmicking strategy but over the time it will take away your loyal customers. Misleading headlines should be avoided and in place of that compelling and relevant headlines, which are accurate and straightforward for the readers, to understand should be used.
Thoroughness Is The Key
When you decide to write on a particular topic make sure that you deal with it thoroughly. Being thorough helps your audience to get a complete picture of the topic and makes you appear more trustworthy for them. Whether talking about the new technology, a debatable topic or any other issue, discussing, in brief, will not work. You have to be as thorough as possible, in order to craft a perfect platform for your audience to connect with you.
Avoid Advertisements In Content
As soon as your audience gains access to your real motive of advertising a business or product through the content, they will stop reading the content and will move away from you. This will take the profit of your business away from you and will earn a bad name for your business. It is thus that one should avoid using hardcore sales pitch in the content and look for adding more credibility to their business by being objective and subtle in their approach.
Every business always long for establishing a strong and ideal relationship with their customers. Their ways and techniques vary from one another and so does the final outcome. However, every single business in the modern days is realizing the importance of compelling and unique contents which helps them to carve a distinctive market identity. The use of the above-mentioned guidelines and strategies ensure helping the marketers to develop a trust among their target audiences and explore the varied market opportunities which otherwise would have been missed by them. These techniques make it certain to develop a strong consumer-business relationship which proves to be highly fruitful for enterprises of different sizes.
Ayan Sarkar is the CTO of CMMI Level 3 certified company, Webskitters, and the Co-Founder of Webskitters Academy, leading IT training institute of India. He shares his brilliant knowledge about the IT industry with others through his brilliant and in-depth guides and write-ups.