It’s not enough to just create content anymore. It used to be that you could throw up a blog, create some images, make a powerpoint and put it on Slideshare, and you’d be in the content marketing game. Those days are over! Content marketing is not that easy anymore, just as everything in the marketing world is no longer simple. SEO was gamed, Google caught wind, and now it’s much harder to rank for popular keywords. Creating some blog posts, sharing them on your Facebook page, and hoping for interaction is no longer a viable strategy. You need to start putting more effort into your content marketing if you are going to hope to make an impression.
Let’s give the example of a fictional up and coming marketing company in Dallas. They’re looking to start a blog that will attract readers, and, hopefully, new clients. They’re in the process of brainstorming ideas for blog articles.
Search on Google for “content marketing”. As of February 15, 2016 there are 391,000,000 results for this topic. So does it make sense to write an article on content marketing? Well, no and yes.
What I mean by “no” is that you shouldn’t be writing an article about content marketing that’s been beaten to death by every other marketer. Instead, you need to do your research and find a subtopic of content marketing that hasn’t been discussed too much and where you can provide value.
Please, for the love of God, don’t write an article called “What is content marketing” or “How to do content marketing”. It’s been done! And it’s been done by huge sites that have millions of readers. What you need to do is find your niche article. Maybe talk about content marketing for flower shops or realtors.
Going for a broad topic is not the right strategy. Yes, I’m sure people visiting your TopDallasMarketer.com blog may check out your article on content marketing, but if you share this blog on Facebook, Stumbleupon, Reddit, Forbes, do you think people will actually read it and gain value? Or do you think they’ll probably look at it and think about all the other content marketing blogs they’ve already read?
Let’s do another example. Say you’re an HVAC company looking to start doing content marketing. Should you write a blog called “How to buy an air conditioner”? Probably not. Searching on Google you get 18.6 million results. So it’s been done. Now, let’s say you still want to do something on air conditioners. What about an article on the fixes to common air conditioner problems? Getting warmer. What about doing a video on fixing one of these common air conditioning problems? Bingo!
Content marketing isn’t just about writing blogs, it can take many forms including video. People looking to repair their AC unit don’t want to read a long article, they’d rather see somebody doing it. So you can do something on a typical problem you see in customers’ homes. This is much more useful to a potential customer than a list of the Top 5 Air Conditioner problems.
These are simplified examples, as every business will have it’s own type of content style. But I just want to illustrate the issue with those getting into content marketing in their industry. It’s important to focus on more in-depth, niche pieces of content, rather than broad, over-done pieces.
So next time you go to write a blog, make an infographic, or film a short video, do some research and see how often that topic has been discussed. Then try to brainstorm more unique pieces of content that your audience will actually learn from.