The term content marketing is red hot these days. Seemingly, every 2014 wrap-up and 2015 preview highlighted content marketing as a major business trend, like Forbes, Social Times, The Guardian, and The Huffington Post.
But for those of you more focused on the day-to-day logistics of your business, you may not have spent much time digging into this buzzy term. Now is the time to take it seriously.
For my part, I think the heart of content marketing is context marketing. By that I mean, putting your product or service in context. How does your business fit into people’s lives? How is it meant to be used? What are new ways it could be used?
A few years ago, when I first became acquainted with the term content marketing, I didn’t fully understand what it was or how to use it until the next time I went to bake a dessert. I love trying the recipes printed on the packaging of bags of sugar, flour, and chocolate chips. As I made the cookies according to the back of the Nestlé’s Toll House wrapper, I finally appreciated content marketing for what it was. These food companies had taken the extra step to show me new ways I could use their products by giving me something valuable—a new recipe—for free. Through their creativity and generosity, I could become better at my hobby of baking, and in turn become a more loyal and customer than ever.
So, what do you have to offer that will empower your customers to get more out of your product? How can you make your customers better informed and more passionate about your product? When you have some ideas of what to share, how will you decide to share it: blog posts, slideshows, photos, videos, social media posts? Or good old fashioned additions to the packaging?
The terminology may be new, but the concepts behind content marketing are no passing trend. It’s time to embrace this promotional method, and to think creatively about how to apply it to your business.