Content marketing, in a nutshell, is any form of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of media and publishing content. The purpose of content marketing is to promote your products and services, influence your readers and acquire and retain customers. There are many benefits to using content marketing, it is relatively inexpensive and with some training, you can start to become a content writer!
Most marketers use some form of content marketing without even thinking about it, these days it’s just what we do. Content marketing is nothing new, it’s been around for years – perhaps a lot longer than you realise! So, where did content marketing start and what are the earliest examples that we can relate to?
Content marketing dates all the way back to 4200 BC, where early cave paintings, it is believed, helped people stay safe from wild boar! The paintings are a form of custom publishing and links to content marketing in a very prehistoric way. In a business sense, the paintings were telling a story, and writing content to a certain extent is simply doing that. In more recent times, around 3000 BC, clay tablets were used as an early style of books.
It wasn’t until the year 8 BC that we saw the first use of paper demonstrated by the Chinese. In the year 1456, the Bible becomes the first book printed on a printing press anywhere in the world!
Fast forward to the nineteenth century where we see magazines being published containing…you guessed it… content! In more recent years, and with the explosion of the internet, content marketing has been used globally in websites, books, magazines, whitepapers and social media etc. And it’s a trend that is set to continue.
The reason why magazines have been so popular over the years is because the reader engages in a relationship with the publication, getting drawn into and engaging with its content.
So, that’s the briefest of histories of content marketing. Before we leave the topic we thought it would be useful to add just a little more ‘content’.
We now have access to a wealth of information (content) like never before, let’s take a look at some of the current content marketing activity that we engage in and its purpose…
So whether you are blogging or vlogging on your website, the fact that you are uploading relevant, interesting and up to date content, on a frequent basis, will go a long way to keeping visitors engaged.
As mentioned at the start of this article, the ultimate aim of content marketing is engagement in some form in order to convert an interest (lead/demand) into a sale (income).
There are some quick and simple tips that you can use to help improve the quality and accessibility of your content.
Use relevant, on topic, keywords within your content. Google works by indexing these keywords, and it’s this indexing that contributes towards your ranking in search engines.
There are many experts whose role is centred on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), and it’s important that marketers have a working knowledge or at least a generic understanding of the workings of SEO.
Here at Ping, when we talk about rankings in search engines, we are referring to the term SEO. Search engine optimisation is all about driving traffic, improving rankings, and increasing awareness. We like to categorise SEO under two sub headings, structure coding and programming, and content and page ranking.
Structure coding and programming
Google needs to be able to navigate a website to be able to read it properly. The most up to date websites already have the correct structure, and coding in place to enable this. A web developer would be able to read the code on your website to ensure it is optimised correctly and suggest and implement improvements.
Content and page ranking
This is the part of SEO that we, as marketers get involved in. Our contribution to SEO comes in the form of writing engaging, fresh and interesting copy. Google searches for the most up to date (newest) and relevant data. Keywords are particularly important in subject and page headings, image descriptions and the main content for your site but the key is writing consistent, updated content.
A strong social media presence also contributes to page ranking and reciprocal links to relevant external content may also assist search engine rankings.
Aside from using keywords for your on-site content, it is also important to remember that anything you upload to your website is going to have an impact on your brand reputation as a whole, the image you are portraying to your customers should be a professional one.
To find out more about how content marketing and how (when done correctly) it can help your business grow, call us today on 0330 041 4550.
Visit our website at www.pingmarketing.co.uk and interact with our friendly team on live chat.