Should your business use content marketing?

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Avex Designs
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Content marketing is a very popular practice undertaken by various businesses across the globe. Big or small, there’s always a place for content marketing in your overall marketing strategy. If you’re new to the game and have recently started your first business, or you lack detailed content marketing knowledge, then this article is for you.

Throughout this piece, we’ll discuss many different things revolving around content marketing in modern times. This includes essential information like how much it costs and what benefits it brings to business. As well as these two main points we’ll also briefly discuss what content marketing is and how many businesses are using it to their advantage. By the time you’ve finished reading this piece, you’ll know all there is to know about content marketing pricing and can choose the best route for your business to go down.

Without further ado, let’s get straight into this article and begin by looking at content marketing in general:

What Is Content Marketing?

As its name suggests, content marketing is a marketing technique that revolves around the creation of content. The whole purpose is to use creative and attractive content to grasp people’s attention and draw their gaze. Content produced must be relevant to your business and not a topic that is completely random. The reason for this is that your main target audience will undoubtedly be your customers and consumers you think are interested in your business. So, if you create content that doesn’t relate to your company or the reader, then there’s no point, as it lends no value to either side.

When done correctly, content marketing can help improve customer interaction and see your business gain more and more customers. There are also firm links between a solid content marketing plan and an increase in sales figures. The key to a successful content marketing strategy is that you understand what content to produce and where to produce it. For example, social media is a very popular platform for companies to distribute content in the form of images, infographics, and videos. Blogs are also an exceptional way to share quality written content with your target audience.

How Many Brands Are Using Content Marketing?

It’s all well and good saying that content marketing is beneficial and very popular amongst businesses and marketers. However, it helps when there are facts available to back these statements up. In a recent piece of research published by the Content Marketing Institute, it found that 89% of organizations in North America are using content marketing. This is an increase of 1% from the last year and 3% from the year before that. So, you can see that a large proportion of brands are using content marketing as part of their promotion and advertising strategy. What’s more, the percentage keeps creeping up year by year. It’s got to the point where many experts think it’s only a matter of time before all brands are using it.

This same research also threw up a few more interesting facts and stats about brands and content marketing. It found that 93% of brands that use content marketing will use social media as a tactic. Also, only 32% of the 89% have a proper content marketing strategy. Consequently, you can see that most brands use this technique, but only a third of these brands have proper strategies in place that include budgets and plans for distribution, etc.

How Much Do Brands Spend On Content Marketing?

Having seen the facts and figures surrounding content marketing usage, you probably feel as though your company should integrate a campaign. However, going in blind without a plan is never a good idea. The main issue with any form of marketing is ensuring you have the right balance with regards to how much money you’re spending. It’s almost a case of figuring out how little you can afford to spend while still gaining the maximum benefits possible. The last thing you want is to splash the cash and overspend on content marketing. It can mean your business loses a lot of money, and the benefits you see won’t outweigh the costs.

A good way to understand how much you should be spending is to look at what other brands are doing. Naturally, it’s difficult to find average figures as many companies and brands have different budget sizes. Instead, what we can do is look at the percentage of brands marketing budget that is spent on this particular technique. Research shows that, on average, 29% of a company’s total marketing budget is spent on content marketing. What’s more, 39% of brands intend to increase their spending over the next year while 45% are looking to keep it around the same mark. Only a measly 2% of companies are planning on reducing their content marketing spend in the next twelve months.

What Should You Spend On Content Marketing?

Obviously, your budget will play a huge role in determining what you should spend on content marketing. Businesses with small marketing budgets shouldn't try and spend as much as a larger company with much higher revenue. However, you should pay attention to the statistics mentioned in this article. Brands tend to spend an average of 29% of their marketing budget on content, and very few brands are looking to decrease this percentage. What this tells you is that your company should be looking to spend around about a third of your overall marketing budget on content marketing. Any more and you might be pushing it too much and draining your budget a bit more than you need to. Many experts think that if you dip below 25%, you won’t be able to finance a good enough content marketing strategy.

Of course, this is merely a general guideline for you to follow. At the end of the day, you’ll know your company better than I do and can understand the financial situation better than any outsider. Naturally, you will get a lot more for your money if you plan everything out beforehand. If you’re looking to employ content marketers or an agency, make sure you shop around for the best ones. You’ll get more bang for your buck if you splash some extra cash on a proven agency with experience and examples of successful strategies they’ve put together for big name brands. Sure, an agency or individual with limited experience may charge a lower fee, but, are you really getting your money’s worth? With regards to content marketing, quality is absolutely vital. If you pay for quality, you’ll waste less money on ideas that are cheaper and not up to your standards.

What Are Marketers Offering For Lower Budgets?

It’s natural that many companies are looking for low-cost content marketing solutions. If you have a low budget, then you might be scared to spend a lot of money on certain aspects of marketing. Now, there are some options out there that are offered by marketers specifically for companies on lower budgets. An affordable option that many marketers are offering is a content audit - this is a process where a marketer reviews your content production and figures out what is working and what is not. In theory, it should help you figure out what content you should be spending your money on and what you can afford to avoid to save some cash.

A lot of marketers are also offering cheap solutions to content creation. For example, they will offer writers that are extremely affordable and can create blog posts, social media/website content, etc. The idea is that your business gets content created by outsiders, and can use it for a very low price. As opposed to the alternatives of either creating content in-house or hiring more expensive people to do so with more experience.

It’s important to note that you should always be cautious when content marketing on a low budget. There are so many marketers out there that promise these cost-effective ideas to help you develop a winning strategy without breaking the bank. If you’re spending very little on writers and content, then you run the risk that they won’t be very effective. Some writers have almost no relation to your business whatsoever. They don’t understand your brand ethos and are being outsourced from the marketing company you’re working with. Essentially, your business is outsourcing marketers who are outsourcing writers. The connection between the content creators and your business just isn’t there.

Always be cautious when it comes to paying for content marketing particularly when you’re on a low budget. Remember, quality is everything, and you can’t cut corners or the quality will drop.

How Does Content Marketing Benefit Business?

I spoke briefly about some of the benefits of content marketing right at the start of this piece. In the final section of this article, we will look at the main benefits in more detail to show you why you need to include it in your marketing strategy.

Firstly, content marketing can increase traffic to your website. Research from the Custom Content Council found that a whopping 68% of consumers are more interested in content as a means of gaining information than anything else. What this means is that quality content aimed at your target audience can easily get them to your website. All it takes is a blog post on your site to garner people's attention and get them on your web pages. Likewise, posting visual content on social media like images, infographics or videos of your products will make it more likely for people to click on links that take them to the corresponding product pages.

Secondly, content marketing helps build brand identity and increase awareness. By producing consistent, relevant content, your company will find it much easier to build brand awareness. Everything you create will be built around your brand identity and designed to fit a certain image. Plus, everything you produce will be accompanied with your brand name on social media or any other platforms you create content for. This is an excellent growth hacking example, which can be applied to gain new customers. People will see what you make, and know who is behind it. The more content you produce, the more you’re getting your brand out there and making people more aware of it. Content marketing is simply one of the easiest ways to increase awareness and build your brand.

Finally, content marketing improves engagement with your target audience. One of the biggest benefits of content marketing is that in improves engagement with your target audience. You create things that attract their attention and get them to engage with you. As a consequence, you open up a medium for your company to communicate with consumers. This has a domino effect, as engagement helps you improve your business in many ways. Once you’ve opened a dialogue with consumers, you can ask them for feedback on your company and ways to improve. Plus, they build a relationship with your brand, start to trust it more, and are more likely to stay loyal and make multiple purchases or recommend you to others. 

Hopefully you have a better understanding how much content marketing costs, what the benefits are and how it can help your business. If you want your company to thrive, then a good content marketing strategy needs to be in place.

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