What do Content Marketing agencies do?
Content Marketing agencies seek to create content that addresses the needs and motivations of the business’ actual leads and customers. They do this using a variety of content types including:
- social posts
- email newsletters
What’s good about Content Marketing?
Content Marketing aims to be directly relevant to the lead / customer that lands on the website (or other channels). The goal of good content is to nurture the audience, build trust and present an ever more complete picture of an evolving brand.
Articles that address common questions helps customers understand a product or service better. It offers them clarity and reduces costly contact hours that a business has with its customers.
Videos are easier to consume and give the brand a more approachable, human touch. For smaller and more intimate businesses, it helps audiences get to know the owner well before even meeting them.
A brand that tells success stories of its past customers helps its audience see themselves and the potential collaboration ahead.
A regularly updated website indicates to Google’s bots that the business is serious about regularly engaging its customers via that channel. Over time, the site’s rankings will improve.
What’s not great about Content Marketing?
There are no quick fixes with Content Marketing. It requires a business with a long term vision.
Because articles / videos will appear in the voice and style of the brand, quality control is critical. Small businesses often do not have the capacity, expertise or creative energy to write and publish regular articles or videos. Collaborating with a copywriter can be frustrating as it takes time to create alignment on the “voice” of the brand.
In the early stages of Content Marketing, companies are often addressing a small cross-section of the total addressable market. It takes work to repurpose, repackage and cross-post content on social media and via email marketing newsletters.
Unlike the immediacy that comes from SEO’s traffic uptick, because the content marketing target audience is often existing contacts, the “high” that comes from feedback-loop approval is few and far between.
Content Marketing ROI
While topline web traffic growth is slower than SEO, content marketing primarily seeks to improve conversion rates. Armed with the right downloadables, articles and videos, sales cycles can be sped up.
Also, Content Marketing keeps the brand front of mind with its leads and customers, leading to more referrals. Combined with a getting noticed by Google’s bots, it will also lead to an opening up of the marketing funnel, albeit slowly at first.
Group of happy diverse people holding empty colourful speech bubbles and smiling at camera.
When to use SEO vs Content Marketing?
SEO and Content Marketing are tactics that address distinct stages of the buyer journey.
SEO seeks to open up the marketing funnel at the awareness stage. This tactic is great for B2C companies with fast-moving products and early stage businesses that need to establish their brand. SEO is never going to result in better conversion rates.
Content Marketing works best for companies that seek to catalyse referrals, nurture leads and close more sales. This tactic is ideal for B2B companies and services-based businesses. Content Marketing is only going to result in better ranking in the long run.
In our view, too many businesses are SEO heavy and may not be reaping the best benefits.
However, both SEO and Content Marketing are important and necessary digital marketing tactics for every business.
We recommend adopting an integrated approach based on actual business priorities in order to unlock the best results.
Catalyst Content offers both SEO and Content Marketing services. Contact us to find out more.