Content marketing is fast becoming the preferred way to build robust relationships and connections with audiences. In fact, it’s safe to say marketing efforts as a whole are fruitless without great content. Regardless of what type of marketing tactics you plan to use, a content marketing strategy is an essential piece to your overarching marketing puzzle.
Quality content is part of all forms of marketing including:
- Social media marketing
- Search Engine Optimisation
- Public Relations
- Paid Per Click
- Inbound marketing
- Content strategy
Traditionally, content refers to text-based media such website pages, blogs, press releases and social media. But today content can include a variety of different areas such as video production, audio, images or multimedia formats. Utilising multiple formats of digital media can open up new avenues and reach a larger audience who are perhaps more adept to receive information formats other than text.
The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as:
“Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.”
Building consumer trust through informative media communication and establishing industry expertise is more effective than a ‘hard sell’. This is true of various different industries, but even more so within the sphere of wellness since people are actively seeking out some form guidance or answer.
So how do you implement these ideas into your wellness business?
Content is omnipresent and accessible at the touch of a button, so businesses need to produce original content with authenticity and substance in order to stand out. In the wellness sector, there are plenty of opportunities for your brand to carve out its rightful spot by offering readers or viewers content that provides solutions and valuable insight. Ultimately, this pulls targeted traffic into your website. Be sure to consider that with creating content for the health and wellness industries comes great responsibility.
1. Establish objectives and develop a strategy
First of all, determine why you creating content. What are your business objectives and what value will it provide your audience? Are you publishing informational and persuasive media with the intention of acquiring more clients? Or do you wish to generate leads or strengthen your position as a marketplace leader?
Whatever your ‘why?’, start to develop a strategy or plan: content creation without strategy often leads generic content with no core themes or purpose, which will confuse your audience. The absence of a plan can also negatively impact the integrity of your brand.
Additionally, you want to stand out from other businesses that are vying for audience's attention. Compelling content is shareable content which means it's more likely to rank organically and therefore deliver against your wider marketing objectives. If you skip the strategy part, you could create content which either alienates your audience or fails to reach them at all.
Make sure your goals are SMART, i.e. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely.
2. Determine your audience
Who are your audience and where are they? To develop a successful plan and really leverage content marketing, you need to be clear on who you are targeting - whose eyes do you want seeing your creations?
Mapping out ‘buyer personas' based on demographics such as age, occupation, pain points or preferences, will help you when it comes to producing relevant, valuable content that you are certain people will want to read or view. This will ultimately filter down your sales funnel, by generating leads and resulting in conversions.
3. Start a blog
This is probably the easiest and most doable type content you can produce on your brand-building quest. Businesses can achieve tangible results through compelling custom content such as blogs or articles. The use of effective blogging and its promotion across social media and print press channels can impact your bottom line in a positive way because it establishes a connection as you capture the hearts and minds of your target customer.
But blogging does require imagination, passion, dedication and self-discipline, as well as of course, a strong grasp of complex grammatical principles. When writing, one must always consider purpose and audience and be aware that the writing style should fit with the targeted audience.
As well as the technical points, bring your text to life. Engage, be informative and offer real value to your readers to increase the likelihood of quality leads. Use your blog as a channel to get your brand's message out there, and tell the story of your business.
4. Utilise a CMS
Daniel O’Donnell, a partner at 2 The Top Marketing in Boise, Idaho recommends a content management system or (CMS), such as WordPress, HubSpot, Hatchbuck or Hootsuite to help you stay on schedule with creation and posting. These tools make it easy to plan a content strategy and review previous campaigns at a glance.
Many CMS platforms allow for visitor re-engagement either via email marketing or a free giveaway in the form of coupons, additional informative content, software download, video, etc. Often, this second level of engagement is what entices the prospective client to pick up the phone or purchase a product and CMS software allows for easy content marketing management and tracking of campaigns.
5. Publish and manage
Your marketing plan should also incorporate how you will organise your content. The best place to start is an editorial calendar. You'll be on the right track for publishing a well-balanced and diverse content library on your website with a comprehensive plan. Then, create a social media content calendar so you can promote and manage your content on other sites.
To make things easier, put together content that is evergreen, meaning pieces of content that are just as relevant months from now as they are today. Recycling content is great for business owners who don’t have the luxury of hiring a specialist content team or in instances where time is at a premium. However don't ignore timely topics or trends either, or something niche that appeals to your audience.
Trends may not be seen as sustainable content, nor be the main bulk of your editorial calendar, but they can certainly help generate spikes of traffic.
It takes time, organisation, and bags creativity to grow a successful content marketing strategy that will help your business stand out. From building the foundation of your content marketing plan, to adding tools to better manage your content, it can seem a little overwhelming. However with a little planning and organisation, your content strategy can be streamlined into a more manageable process.
One of the most important pieces of advice for creating powerful health and wellness content is to not to bite off more than you can chew and stay focused on your area of expertise or niche. If you attempt to cover lots of different areas all at once, you may dilute your authority within the world of wellness.
The future of content
According to CMI’s 2017 B2B Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends research report, content marketing is set to grow even further: 62% of marketers surveyed say that they are more successful now than they were last year.
For now at least, content remains king.