Why Content Marketing Will Be More Important in 2018 Than Ever Before
Content is King. Marketers have been repeating out that mantra for years now and there are those who have come to find it incredibly annoying. In fact, some think of the whole concept of content marketing as annoying and resource consuming.
However, the simple fact is that if it is not part of your online marketing strategy now, let alone for 2018 then you are at a big disadvantage compared to your competition who embrace the concept.
Why? There are probably dozens and dozens of reasons that marketing experts could cite, but here are just some of the most compelling at the moment.
Content Matters to Consumers
In today’s always connected world, the average consumer’s appetite for good content is larger than ever before. They are however looking for what they consider to be high quality, valuable content that entertains or informs. At the same time, they are becoming more and more resistant to the ‘hard sell’, the blatant advertising that people distrust more than ever before.
Most consumers research their purchase online, even if they intend to complete it offline.
And this applies to almost every purchasing decision right now. Need to choose between two brands of lipstick? Head to YouTube to see what the beauty vloggers have to say about them. Not sure which cookware set to buy? Maybe some of the food blogs have some good suggestions.
The fact is that consumers are actively seeking out content online to help them make good decisions, but they do not want to be sold to. A Roper Survey found that 70% of those they surveyed preferred to learn about brands and their offerings via articles and social media instead of advertising and 60% said that they felt that such content helps them make better purchasing decisions.
If you fail to engage your customers with interesting content, and rely instead purely on paid advertisements you are not doing yourself, or your business any favors and you may even damage your brand reputation.
Content Matters to Search Engines
Search engines have become the go to place that people head to gather both information and search for solutions to their problems. For example, practically no one makes use of an old-fashioned encyclopedia any more, they check Wikipedia instead. And when was the last time you saw someone pull out an actual paper map? A long time ago we’ll bet.
The same holds true for purchasing decisions of all kinds, which is why any business’ search engine ranking – its place in the SERPS – is still so very important.
Google says that its ranking algorithms take hundreds of different factors into account, but they make no secret of the fact that content is certainly a biggie. In recent years it has become obvious to anyone who spends even 15 minutes researching the issue that Google rewards those who provide up-to-date, high quality content and punishes those who publish spammy, low-quality pieces.
To remain relevant in the SERPS any business – including any retail business – needs to provide an ongoing supply of fresh content that will not only keep search bots coming back to their site but interested humans as well.
Content Matters for Businesses
Like it or loathe it, content matters for businesses of all kinds. If you are the kind of person who likes to be shown the money in form of statistics, consider these:
- Compare content marketing to paid search, and content marketing garners three times the leads per spend. (Kapost)
While gathering three times the leads, content marketing, on average, costs 62% less than paid advertising (Kapost)
615 million Internet users worldwide now make use of adblockers. Paid ads are seen far less frequently across the board in 2017 than was the case just 3 years ago. (PageFair 2017 Global Adblock Report)
Small businesses who maintain a blog on their website gain, on average, 126% more leads than their direct competitors who do not (Impactbnd)
We could go on, but by now you’ll have seen the point. Even if you personally have still not quite embraced the idea of content marketing at this point it’s time to get over your objections and dive in, before your competition gains advantages from their content marketing efforts that are hard to overcome, in 2018 and for years to come.