STANDING OUT FROM THE CROWD WITH CONTENT MARKETING July 18, 2023 | Marketing , Business Tips , Social Media | digital marketing , email marketing , business website , Facebook , LinkedIn , Youtube , Google , SEO , paid search By Michael Trimble, NPI, Inc.'s Content Marketing Coordinator Converting leads into actual customers can feel like an uphill battle at times. Business owners are tasked with finding an audience who might use their services, explaining why their service is relevant to that audience’s needs, and then providing enough evidence to prove that their services are more worth their audience’s time and money than the competition’s. Navigating all of these hurdles as one person is daunting, but owners should know that there is a workable solution. Content marketing is the life-blood for every business’ online activity, and more often than not, entrepreneurs that don’t have a good handle on their content marketing tend to have trouble engaging their clients. This is no reason to be intimidated, however. Small business owners have the opportunity to learn the gist of developing a content marketing plan in no time. But first, let’s discuss a few essentials. What is Content Marketing? Every social media post, blog article, infographic, and video tutorial released by a business is a form of content marketing. While content marketing can come in many, many different forms, they all have a shared intention to ultimately promote the use of a business’ products and/or services. Just as converting a sale isn’t a one-step process, though, different forms of content marketing are better suited to tackle supporting business from different angles. A home inspector has a set of tools for different situations, and a content marketer has different types of content that excel for different purposes. For a couple of examples: Social Media is not so new to marketing anymore, and this category can really be divided further into different platforms for different uses (LinkedIn to target professionals, TikTok to target Gen Z, and Facebook or Instagram for Millenials). Social media marketing is a valuable way to initiate direct contact with an audience, which builds familiarity and trust. Blogs have the power to increase traffic to a business website and they can drive a brand’s authority within their industry. Natural, organic website traffic is important for new clients and customers to discover a brand. Blogs provide many benefits for online business, learn more here ! Email Marketing is distinct from blogs in that they are great at reaching an existing audience in particular. Some industries do have success using email marketing to reach out to new clients as well, but content like newsletters that are delivered through email campaigns are great for keeping a business top of mind. In industries where ongoing relationships lead to the majority of business interactions, email marketing is king. The Goals of Content Marketing Marketers with a wide skill set in content creation will have access to these previously mentioned “tools” and many more. Their knowledge of when and how to use them is what can really elevate a business above their competition. Regardless of which medium they select, all forms of content marketing will work towards the same collection of goals to benefit the business overall. First, content marketing needs to show a business’ client-base exactly how their company is different from the other guys. Maybe a business’ services are of a unique, premium quality, or maybe remarkable customer service is a business’ calling card. The messaging employed in content marketing should match up with the business’ overall design philosophy to create an easily recognizable and distinct brand that clients will remember when their services are needed. After clarifying the details that differentiate the business, good content marketing is designed to reach and engage a specific audience. Strong marketers will find a way to bring their content to their desired audience, whether they are most easily reached on Facebook, through email, or they spend their time on TikTok. Experimenting with new platforms and recording how those platforms perform in regards to engagement and conversion rates are important to develop a lasting content marketing plan. With an identity and location in mind, marketers can focus on generating the actual content. Overall, people like to work with people who are capable, reliable, and trustworthy, so a business’ content marketing should work to reflect these attributes. Though content marketing can do a lot of heavy lifting in these regards, business owners should always remember that they are often the face of their company. When their actions work against their business’ brand or are contrary to these positive attributes, their marketing content will likewise fall flat. Following these guidelines is the first step toward developing a content marketing plan. Of course, business owners shouldn’t expect to accomplish a comprehensive content marketing strategy all on their own, however. Every successful entrepreneur should be supported by a first-rate team. To learn more about helping new hires become invaluable team members, click here ! NPI franchisees have the benefit of using a brand backed by 35 years of excellence! Request a free info packet to learn more about starting your own property inspection franchise, or reach out to our recruitment team today! About the Author Michael Trimble, Content Marketing Coordinator A graduate of the University of South Dakota, Michael has a B.A. in International Studies and English. With a background in research and writing, Michael contributes to NPI’s corporate marketing team as a copywriter and content strategist.