4 Keys to Effective Content Marketing

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Content Marketing Starts with Great Content. Here’s How to Create It

Identifying prospective customers, capturing their attention, fending off competitors and closing sales is difficult work. Smart companies everywhere are turning to content marketing to help them drive, nurture and convert leads more effectively. Also known as inbound marketing, it’s based on the premise that, since commercial buyers now increasingly do their own initial research without relying on vendors’ sales teams for data, organizations that publish or share useful content (articles, white papers, blogs, infographics, videos, webinars, podcasts and just about anything else that can be distributed) can create a favorable impression in the marketplace and frame issues in ways that put the organization’s products and services in the best light.

Marketing automation is a valuable—if not vital—complement to content marketing efforts. Digital distribution, tracking, testing and analytical tools promise to help organizations use content to identify their most promising prospects, target them with relevant information and measure all of their efforts with unprecedented precision. The potential to improve marketing ROI is significant. But too often, technical aspects of marketing automation are distracting marketers from the basic fundamentals of content marketing. Discussions of lead scoring, progressive profiling, multi-touch attribution and more are important, but they should not be taking attention away from the marketer’s primary challenge: creating compelling content.

Here are 4 guidelines to helping marketers develop content that prospective customers want to consume and share, and that can drive a successful content marketing effort.