When you think about “marketing” your business you might be thinking about agencies and fancy campaigns, social media pushes or spending a lot of money on printed materials to endear new customers to your business.
When you’re starting out though this can seem like a catch 22. You need marketing to create new customers, but you need new customers first to create a marketing budget. Fortunately, if you are boot-strapping your business or watching the pennies, content-marketing is an effective way of letting people know about your business, and what’s more, you can do it yourself to start with.
What is content marketing?
Content marketing is any piece of published content, online or offline, aimed at marketing your business and increasing enquiries for your services.
It is different to straight “advertising” because for most content marketing, you don’t have to “pay” to place your content. It is different to buying advertising space to use because unlike most “advertising” you’re creating informative content that people voluntarily want to read.
Why do people want to read your content marketing pieces?
Potential customers are attracted to your content because you are offering something informative, or entertaining which is directly related to the services that you offer. For example you could publish an article on your blog which covers the:
Top ten questions you should ask when hiring insert your service here
Why does content marketing work?
Giving away valuable information for free doesn’t make your services seem less valuable, instead by publishing pieces about the questions your customers want to know, you begin to position yourself as the expert in your industry.
Not only that, but you become a trusted source so that not only do your customers think of your business when they are having a problem that you solve, but because they are already attached to your advice and style of working, they are usually willing to pay even more because it’s “you” or your business.
On top of that, content published online increases the chances of people finding you through search engines. On top of that, by publishing content that answers the kinds of questions your customer is asking when they’re looking for someone who does what you do, your service is going to leap out at them over others who are simply telling people what they do.
What are different types of content marketing?
Content marketing is any kind of published content online that increases exposure, positions you as an expert or increases your leads, conversions and sales. Just a few free ways to do this include:
- Posting articles on someone else’s website or blog that attracts your target market
- Your own blog
- Running a free email newsletter that includes building up to offers
- Creating a campaign of free content to make your audience more aware of an upcoming launch you are doing
- Creating social media content that attracts new customers and increases traffic to your blog or site
Where to start with content marketing?
If you’re just starting out I would recommend having your own blog, and then creating content for other people’s sites so that you can attract new readers. Much like I am writing this article for Women Unlimited!
If you have any success from marketing your business this way, or have any questions, let me know in the comments below!
About The Author: Amy Harrison is a copywriter for entrepreneurs. In addition to writing for her clients, she also coaches business owners to smash up their sales copy obstacles and get their offers out there. She is the also the author of How To Get Your Sales Page DONE!