How to Stay Relevant with Content Marketing

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This article is due to be released on Valentine’s Day, a wonderful time of year when we reflect on our relationships and do a little work and gift-giving to maintain them. If you’ve kept up with our blog in the past, you know that creating content that is relevant to your audience is key to long lasting business relationships. We all know this is easier said than done with the ever changing demands of consumers. They expect you to know who they are, what they like, be on all the channels they like and actively communicate with them. Companies are continually failing when trying to achieve this, thus creating noise for consumers. Your goal should be to break through this noise by staying relevant to a specific target market. As Jeremy Bednarski says, “Instead of interrupting the things people are interested in, create the things people are interested in” [1].

You can find a million definitions of what content marketing is, but it is essentially how you engage and attract existing customers and potential customers through content creation [1]. In other words, this process of finding relevant content needs to apply to your existing market and the market you want to dive into. This article will explain what exactly staying relevant means for your company. The keys lie in understanding who your customer is, focusing on their demographics and behaviors, quickly responding to trends in your industry and personalizing your content.

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What is Relevance?

The first step in this process is to truly understand what it means to be relevant. Content that relates to your needs, goals and desires is what is most relevant to you. Relevance is usually what catches your eye like specific trends, stories and updates. All of us are constantly looking for resources and information to be updated on and to stay in the loop. What are you desiring and searching for today? Wouldn’t it be nice if companies could offer the perfect solution to you right now? This is what you should be striving to offer your customers through your content marketing strategy.

Keys to Staying Relevant

  1. Know Your Customer’s Demographics
    The first key to staying relevant is to know your customer the best you can. The underlying process of this focuses on different kinds of customers that can be segmented into personas. If you aren’t sure where to begin, start researching and conducting interviews with your customers. Also try talking to your sales team who work with your customers on a daily basis. You want to find out demographic information which is the socioeconomic characteristics of the population you are analyzing [2]. This includes characteristics such as their background, job details, gender, age, location and income. If you use these characteristics in your content, you can speak to a particular person or industry. Many platforms allow you to analyze your current target market such as Twitter Analytics or software like Sendible and Cyfe. To learn more about identifying and measuring your target demographics check out our Short Guide to Demographic Research.
  2. Know Your Customer’s Behaviors
    Take your research and interviews even further by analyzing your customer’s behavior to understand why they act the way they do. Demographics give a basic background of the person, but we also want to know how they shop, how they read, what platforms they like to use and more about their personality in general. Try listening to what your customers are saying on social media and tracking their actions. Through marketing automation tools, you can figure out behaviors on your website and email campaigns as well. By doing this, you can speak through your content more personally and use behavioral cues that encourage continuous engagement [3]. Read our Consumer Behavior Analysis for more information.
  3. Respond to Trending Content
    Stay up to date on what is trending in the industry, because this is what consumers want to see. They are interested in the new, not the old. Check out sites like Buzzfeed, Facebook Trending or Google Trends that track content and trends throughout the industry. When appropriate, business news and national holidays can be a great way to bring trending content to you page. For example, with Valentine’s Day occurring tomorrow, many companies are going to post Valentine’s Day themed content like promotions, news and events. Try implementing this technique for the next holiday and see how your audience responds.
  4. Make the Content Personal It’s important to make the interaction between you and your customers as personal as possible even if it’s through the internet. Phrase your content into questions to encourage people to respond and communicate. When someone likes your content, share the love and like them back. If you find loyal customers, try posting content that they like the most. According to Dragon Search Marketing, 61% of consumers’ buying decisions is influenced by content [4]. By providing relevant content that is meaningful, you are taking a good step towards maintaining this. Try finding the main city of your followers and post blog content pertaining to that city. Consider implementing giveaway or promotional strategies to make your customers feel a part of your company. When people see content that is exciting or relevant to their current life, they feel a connection to what you are providing. This is the connection you should build as high as possible.
  5. Make the Content Consistent It is not surprising that over 60% of marketers are creating content at least once a day [4]. Consumers are looking for consistency, because they want content they like to continue. Once you have found your customer personas and are engaging them with you content, you should strive to do it daily to maintain them as a loyal customer. If you are inconsistent, it will be difficult to encourage people to check out your platforms. People will start to look for other companies that produce what they need when they need it. To avoid this, find a schedule to develop with your team of how to produce content and when. It’s different for every company, so it is important to evaluate your needs and adjust accordingly.

Conclusion

In general, it is common to confuse content marketing with advertising. The goal of content marketing is to provide what is truly interesting and engaging to your customer while serving your brand’s purpose instead of providing what you want the customer to find interesting [1]. This process is focused on positioning the company rather than driving sales. This almost always tends to be more effective and efficient than traditional advertising. By understanding and listening to your customer and keeping up with trends, you will be able to find the perfect content for your company.

Questions?

Contact us by email at alliaudrey@idesigncollaborative.com.


  [1] http://heidicohen.com/content-marketing-definition/
[2] http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/demographic-factors.html
[3] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4723726/
[4] http://neilpatel.com/blog/38-content-marketing-stats-that-every-marketer-needs-to-know/