If recent trends are to be believed, people do not want glitz and glamour. Practicality and relevancy seems to be of the utmost importance for customers and readers. Sadly, very few companies are thinking of utilitarian content marketing and most are using content marketing channels to churn out as much marketing material as they can. You may think that content marketing is free and people will flock towards your published content only because they don’t have to pay for it. This is not true and it is no reason to create fluff-filled, content pieces that only serve to market your company’s products. As with other forms of marketing, utilitarian seems to be the key and gone are the days when content was just another form of advertisement.
Companies should remember this – people detest blatant advertising. The only way to separate your content from the rest is to make it as valuable as possible to readers ensuring that readers learn something from reading or viewing it. Take for example SEOmoz. The company is popular for the SEO tools that it develops, but the brand is more famous for the blog that it maintains. The SEOmoz blog known as the Daily SEOmoz Blog is a rich source of valuable content that people turn to for all their SEO needs. The blog is not used for marketing the products of the company but to educate people about SEO and its latest trends.
This may sound unfortunate but it is true. When bloggers become popular and reach critical mass, they look to monetize their blogs and this is when things go sour. In a bid to earn more, most popular bloggers pump out rehashed and poorly created content knowing that they have a ready reader base. Obviously, this leads to quick drop in web traffic and rankings for an erstwhile excellent blog. Once you start advertising with your content, people will no longer look at you as a trusted source of content.
To figure out what kind of content people are craving for or to find out things that people need most help with, you need to use social media platforms. You can use cues from your social media marketing campaigns in your content marketing campaigns. Smart companies listen to fans and followers to figure out what kind of content will be most appreciated and valued by them. Once you have figured out the kind of content you need to create for maximum utility, pass on the task to content writers who can create easy-to-read and attractive content without ruining its utility.
Is this true? Companies may use advertising techniques to increase brand loyalty and to create more meaningful relationships with customers but this is not enough. Brands want to engage with customers, but most customers do not want to engage with the brand. They just want the company to fulfill a pressing need. This holds true for the content of the company too. So next time you are creating or publishing a piece of content, put yourself in the shoes of your readers and see if the content is truly useful.
© 2013 Godot Media