Business content must be unique. Google reminds us time and time again that fresh, original content will be rewarded.
But SEO benefits aside, isn’t this obvious and something we should already be striving for?
Content marketing can only ever be truly effective if it’s consistent with your tone of voice and if it works in parallel with your brand values. Plus, business content should always talk to your customers and not at them. (That’s right.
Customers are those people who part with their hard-earned cash and are too often an afterthought).
In other words, marketing only works when it’s unique to you and your business. When it comes from you, when it serves your needs and when it connects with your audience.
There’s nothing wrong with being motivated by the competition, and even inspired by them, but don’t talk like one of your rivals. Be true to your brand. Don’t try to be a big fish in a huge pond if you’re really quite niche. Don’t create jarring taglines by trying to be something you’re not. And so on.
Marketing needs to be tailored specifically to your company. Good copywriters, marketers and PR staff can give your content the magic treatment, but there are several questions that you should think about answering before marching into the year ahead.
1. What do you want to get out of your content marketing?
And be precise here.
The trick is to find the balance between what’s realistic and what’s challenging. Are you after increased traffic to your website? Potential sales leads? Ebook downloads? Fresh email contacts?
Having clearly defined goals will help you find the most compelling messages. As a copywriter, I’m aware that I need to know the purpose of every piece of copy before I start writing.
2. Who is your content marketing aimed at?
As the well-known phrase goes, you can’t be all things to all people. That’s especially true of content marketing.
Work out who your most valuable customer is. Profile them, define what they like to read and how they access their material. Then unleash some effective, quality content.
3. Don’t be afraid to ‘sell’ your USP.
If you haven’t got a USP, find one. Quickly. Then plug it in various creative ways.
What’s your story? It’s important to get that across no matter how large or small your business. It’s this more personable approach that will set you apart from the rest and make your content interesting, engaging and, ultimately, persuasive. Your content marketing is ultimately about boosting your business and making more money.
As a result, your messages should be emotive and memorable.