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Content Marketing To Build Value In a Product And In A Business

People often ask me, in the world of online marketing that is saturated with agencies pushing SEO and link building services, why am I such a staunch advocate of content marketing? Why not offer the same link building services huge agencies are still selling to their clients and that have been successful in the past? These, of course, are valid questions and I quickly leap into my elevator pitch excited to share marketing data. I am, after-all, a numbers and analytics geek. The proof is in the data. I discuss how the traditional outbound marketing methods of radio, T.V. and print publications have a low conversion rate and how the Google Hummingbird algorithm has enabled a closer and more in-depth understanding of the value of web page content. At this point I am rolling… dropping stats and throwing marketing quotes out like fireballs. I could talk about marketing for hours. Blah, blah, blah… on and on with what I think is a highly insightful analysis of online trends and web user behavior. I look up to see eyes glazed and a clear lack of comprehension for the critical evidence that, for the last 3 minutes, I have just been a frenzied pulpit preacher for.

Content Marketing For BusinessMy approach to discussing content marketing has sense changed. Understanding the data and numbers is really important but a better explanation revolves around how content marketing holds hands with a potential customer, provides valuable information at an opportune time and wrestles a pain-point to the ground. I personally wasn’t a believer in content marketing until I looked at my own online search and purchase habits. I now give the following example, a content marketing case study, when explaining how content marketing benefits a business.

I am a triathlete. The pinnacle event for this sport, for many athletes, is an Ironman triathlon which consists of a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike and 26.2 mile marathon run that must all be completed in under 17 hours. Out of these three triathlon disciplines, I am weaker in the bike portion of the race. My pain point is both figurative and literal; the desire to get faster on the bike portion of a race course and avoid actual physical pain and suffering

Pain Point: Too slow on the bike

Content Marketing For Lead GenerationIn attempts to improve my speed on the bike, I have spent a great deal of time on Google researching this topic in attempts to find tips for training and/or equipment that could save me minutes or even seconds on the 112 mile bike course. The goal is to get off of the bike as fast as possible and save my tired legs for the long run to follow.

I quickly located a blog post provided by a company that sells equipment, apparel and training media for triathletes. The blog post was specifically about how to save time on the bike portion of an Ironman event. Score… this was exactly what I was looking for. Not only was this content provided for free but it offered valuable information precisely when I needed it.

Value: Free Informative Content Offered At The Perfect Time To Solve My Pain Point

This blog post outlined the top ten time-saving pieces of equipment I could purchase, an estimation of the time savings of each based on testing and the cost of each. It even offered further analysis of wind-tunnel tests showing how aerodynamic each piece of equipment performed to reduce resistance and drag. There was a chart showing cost-per-mile and cost per minute saved for each item. This was not a blog post that was trying to push product, rather, it offered insightful information with the goal of educating triathletes. It was quality content offered for free with the goal of educating consumers.

Trust: Building value in products and trust in a company

Quality Content For ConsumerAs a consumer I am now excited to read this information and I am now armed with the insightful data that I need to make educated purchase decisions to solve my issue. I quickly sign up for the free download of this data so I can refer back to it later… also giving this company my personal info. I am now able to make a decision on what piece of equipment to buy based on my new insight, level of training and available finances. Trust was built through this company offering me what I needed and when I needed it in a detailed and well-constructed blog post. I didn’t give my information to the company that offered me a 5% coupon off to buy a set of $3,000.00 carbon wheel set or the company that wrote blog posts about how great their customer service was. The business that got my contact information was the one that built trust and value with content marketing.

Purchase: Purchase Because Of Rapport and Value

Outsource Company Marketing Vs. In-HouseInstead of a $3000.00 carbon wheel set for my bike, I learned that I could save almost the same amount of time with a $220.00 racing helmet and a pair of $15 shoe covers. I would not have known the value and time-saving potential of these two items if it were not for the Blog post. I bought these items from the company that provided me with insightful data through their content marketing. They were the cheapest company to purchase from but they were able to build rapport and trust with me by giving me something that I needed. The business that provides the best answer for solving a consumer pain point typically has the highest conversions rates.

End Game: Benefits of Content Marketing

Content Marketing Case Study

Content That Builds ValueMy contact information is now in this company’s database and I continue to receive emails from them. The emails are informational based rather than pushing products and I look forward to reading them. I have purchased several other products from this business and I often share the valuable content they send me through my social media channels. This model works incredibly well for increasing sales and building long-term clients. The content of the initial Blog post built value and rapport by solving my  pain-point. I gladly gave my contact information to this business because the quality of the content and this company continues to cultivate the relationship by providing more valuable content and data via email and social media. I often share this content with triathlon friends through my social channels and make frequent purchases from this business. It is easy to see how this simple model of content marketing can capture consumers and nurture a long term relationship with them.

The alternative to content marketing, Outbound Marketing, focuses more on generating traffic from particular high-traffic keywords to push a product. This works for big box stores with warehouses full of product that can offer the lowest prices in a marketplace. Small businesses often cannot compete on price-point alone and lose out with online consumers looking to save a few pennies on a purchase. However, smaller companies, with valuable content, can build rapport with potential clients and add a personal presence throughout a buyers sales cycle. This is how smaller businesses can compete in a saturated marketplace or provide more to consumers than a much larger company often does.

With 86% of all online searches being information-ally based it is easy to see where the value of content marketing can significantly boost a marketing campaign. My own personal online search and purchase habits have turned me into a firm believer that content marketing is a cost-effective and powerful marketing strategy for reaching a target market.

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Daniel O'Donnell
Daniel O'Donnell
Daniel Odonnell has worked in the internet space for over 20 years helping clients create a powerful web presence designed to reach targeted clients. His specialties are social media promotion and content marketing campaigns focused on reaching highly targeted market segments. Weekend triathlete, father, husband and football fan.