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DOES CONTENT MARKETING WORK?

Let's start by defining what content marketing is. Content marketing is the creation and distribution of content on the Internet. But what kind of content are we talking about? Here is a list, which might change as technology evolves, but it should give you an idea of the variety of options:

  • Articles of all kinds;
  • White paper or e-books;
  • Videos;
  • Infographics;
  • Inquiries and surveys;
  • Guides;
  • Webinars;
  • Q&A;
  • Testimonies;
  • Podcasts and videocasts;
  • Case studies;
  • Live Videos;
  • Etc ...
  • The roles of content marketing are varied, but ultimately the strategy is to make the company known, establish a strong customer relationship and build a brand.

    So back to the question: does it work? The answer is yes!

    For myself and many of my clients, content marketing is used to increase sales, increase website ranking in search engines, reach out to the network of people who know us, establish credibility, keep social presences and websites dynamic and fresh. On a few occasions, an article I write goes viral. It's hard to predict when and where, but one example was for a client in the health industry after her article had gone viral in France. France was not her target market, but thanks to the readership of this article, the website rose in popularity on Google to reach the first position in her own geographic market, even if there were bigger players active on the web. On another occasion and for another client, an English article was picked up in the United States which tripled the number of visits on the website.

    Of course the website must be able to sell; the article itself, if informative, will not necessarily sell, but it will bring visits to the site and in turn the website should complete the process.

    We are mainly talking about articles so far, but there are several other options on our list. Other ones that I've been working with are videos and YouTube channels. For one of my clients, we produced 95 videos and had no less than 145,000 views on YouTube. And although the traffic resulting from this strategy was very interesting, it remains that articles are still step ahead for now. The reason is that videos have fewer opportunities to insert keywords and be sniffed by search engines. Platforms like Facebook and YouTube increasingly offer the possibilities of including keywords in the description, but we are not yet at the level of an article on a website or blog. One way to get around this it is to make a page with a written summary of the video and the video itself. So we have the best of both worlds.

    The other point which is important is the quality level of visitors. The greater the correlation between what you write and what you sell, the higher the quality of visits and the better chance you have to turn them into potential buyers. It would not be very productive to write an article about politics if you sell shoes. People interested in your article might be interested in what you sell, but the success rate would be much lower than if you are writing about the latest European fashion trend for example, or what the colors in vogue for the next season will be.

    No matter what type of content marketing you choose to create, the key to success is to get it viewed which is a bit paradoxical since you do content marketing to be known. But the more you make an effort to be seen on multiple groups, platforms, etc…, the more you will be able to create enthusiasm for your business, your products and your brand. If you have any questions or comments, do not hesitate.

     

    Stéphane Elmaleh-Riel, B.Ed., MBA
    Marketing consultant