During my time in digital marketing I’ve had the pleasure of being told a new statistic on a near-daily basis. This has included anything from emails being perfect for contacting groups of between 300 and 450 people so long as they’re between the ages of 34 and 37 and have brown hair, through to LinkedIn having two people become members every second. Out of all this change has blossomed one modern-day constant: people can’t be marketed too any longer – they must be wooed.
I understand that in a world of 24\7 communication, and a relentless struggle to remain relevant, it is easy to fall into a trap of insisting – even on a subconscious level whereat we have convinced ourselves – that strategies, perceptions, and aims are changing as we speak and we must tell the world! But it is critical that we retain a sense of perspective on these issues.
Consumers, be they for a product or a service or any other type of offering, are seeking the same things that any of us in or out of the buying funnel are seeking: a connection to something that we can understand, learn from and appreciate.
This may be a romanticised view of our field, but so be it. From where will such philosophies stem if not in the ink of the pens of marketers ourselves?
So establishing a connection with the people we are trying to woo is really at the heart of what we, 21st century glorified sales-women and –men, are seeking to achieve. And it is this connection that builds relationships, which build leads, which build conversions, which build loyalty, which in turn breeds an unending source of free advertising.
There is, in my opinion, a lot to be said for old-style advertising campaigns as an idea, but in and of themselves? No. As said above, people must be wooed. So old methods can certainly form a section of a wider marketing strategy, but that connection must be built through an integrated ideal of relationship fostering, which is where content marketing comes to the fore.
I would finish by adding that many people are confused by the fact incorrect thought that content applies to blog posts or text on sites. Content applies to any form of media that makes up your brand’s outlying strategy, be that a blog post, site text, videos, infographics, animations and whatever else you can think of.
So why is content marketing still important? Because it is the only sort of marketing that will, as a pure idea, work.