What Is Content Marketing? (Definition and Examples)

By Indeed Editorial Team

November 24, 2021

Many companies are switching from traditional marketing to digital marketing. An essential strategy in digital marketing is content marketing, which allows companies to connect with their customers easily. This can lead to increased sales, so understanding content marketing can help improve your marketing techniques. In this article, we answer the question, "What is content marketing?," explain why it's important, discuss why to consider using it, offer answers to frequently asked questions about the topic, and highlight some content marketing examples.

Related: A Guide to Marketing as a Career

What is content marketing?

Learning the answer to, "What is content marketing?", can be helpful in your career. Content marketing is a strategic selling method where companies create and distribute educational and relevant content to attract and maintain an audience in hopes of gaining customers. Content marketing focuses on the audience and providing them with useful content to encourage them to keep engaging with the company rather than on the company's brand, products, or services.

For this reason, it's important to consider what your audience cares about and what may gain their attention. When you use content marketing, you are providing your customers relevant and helpful information on topics that matter to them, which often leads to new audiences discovering the company. It also allows you to gain trust with your current customers. This can help you create relationships, grow an engaged subscriber base, and increase profits. The end goal of content marketing is to drive profitable customer action.

Related: Marketing Job Titles (Examples and Hierarchy)

Why is content marketing important?

The main reasons why content marketing is essential is that it leads to increased sales, cost savings, and loyal customers. Content marketing raises awareness of solutions a company can offer and educates consumers about products they may have never considered. It satisfies the first two stages of the buying process, namely, recognizing needs and wants and searching for information.

When potential clients have exposure to your content and find value in it, they typically already know they want your product or service by the time they contact you. This reduces the need for engaging in high-pressure sales tactics. The return on investment for content marketing can be very high if you execute it the right way. Content marketing also includes digital marketing channels such as social media and can improve the company's search engine optimization (SEO), which can help more people find the company.

Related: Top 10 Skills of a Marketing Manager

Why use content marketing?

Here are some reasons you might use content marketing:

  • To reduce marketing costs: If you target your marketing campaigns to a specific audience, you can reduce marketing costs as there's no longer the need for creating large, general marketing campaigns for the overall population.

  • To be found by potential customers: If people are searching for information online, they can easily gain exposure to the company if it appears at the top of their search results. To increase your chances of being shown, try to create valuable content via blog posts, videos, e-books, or other content.

  • To increase revenue with existing customers: Content marketing can also help you strengthen your relationship with existing customers. This can increase loyalty and revenue.

  • To acquire new customers: If people notice the value in your content and the company's products or services, they are more likely to make a purchase. This can increase revenue and help you build a larger audience, increasing brand awareness.

  • To build an audience: Successful content marketing helps you create an audience and helps you create an engaged audience that's actually interested in your content. This can lead to them commenting on your posts and spreading awareness of the brand.

Frequently asked questions about content marketing

To help you fully understand content marketing, consider the following answers to frequently asked questions you may have:

What's the difference between content marketing and traditional marketing?

The main difference between traditional product marketing and content marketing is the information each one includes. Traditional product marketing includes information about a company's products or services and any promotions they're having. Content marketing does the same thing, but with more detail. It advertises a product or service and tells the audience what's unique and valuable about it, making content marketing more informative.

Another difference between traditional marketing and content marketing is the medium each one uses. Traditional marketing typically uses mediums the public may see, such as billboards, flyers, brochures, television, or radio. Companies target their content marketing to a specific audience, typically online. This can include educational articles, videos, webinars, podcasts, or e-books.

Related: Marketing vs. Sales (With Definitions and Differences)

What metrics can you use to measure the success of my content marketing?

To assess how your content is performing, you can review metrics to measure the content's success. Here are some of the most common metrics to assess:

Traffic

Traffic count is the number of people accessing a website. There are various aspects to consider for traffic, including:

  • the number of people visiting your website

  • the amount of time people are spending on your website

  • the number of web pages people are viewing each time they visit your website

  • the rate of new traffic compared to old traffic

Onsite engagement

If your website appears at the top of search results, it's more likely that people visit it. While traffic counts are one goal of content marketing, you also want people to stay on your website and engage with your calls to action. Assessing how long people are staying on your website can inform you about the effectiveness of your content.

To assess these measures, review your website's bounce rate, which is a measure of website visitors that immediately leave, without taking any actions or viewing other pages of the site. If your bounce rate is low, people are spending time on your website and exploring your content. If it's high, you may want to update your content or create new content specifically for your target audience.

Quality leads

Another way to measure the success of your content is to assess the number of visitors that became leads. A lead is a potential customer that shows interest in your products or services. There are a number of ways to determine whether you have quality leads. For example, if people are filling out forms on your website for more information or engaging with your chatbots, this is a good sign that your marketing strategy is working as they're showing interest in your products or service.

Sales

The best indicator of successful content marketing is that your sales are increasing. If your quality leads turn into customers, it's a good indication that the efforts of your content are working. This can increase your revenue and help you to reach a larger audience.

What can you learn from successful marketing campaigns?

As many brands use content marketing, you can learn from their success. Here are some tips that established brands have implemented when creating content:

  • provoke emotions in your audience by telling a story

  • make your audience feel unique through targeted content

  • inform and educate your audience

  • be transparent and honest

  • keep your audience entertained with interactive content

  • ensure your visual content is high quality

Content marketing examples

Here's a list of examples of content marketing for you to consider:

  • Blog articles: You can write blog posts that answer the questions your audience is asking.

  • Podcasts: Consumers who prefer to multitask while performing other actions or while going from place to place can enjoy podcasts.

  • Video content: Videos serve as an excellent way to connect with your audience. The public is constantly looking for videos to solve their problems or satisfy their desires.

  • Infographics: These long and vertical graphics are used to display information in a visually appealing way that's easy to read and understand.

There are several ways you can use content marketing to connect with your audience. Try to provide valuable content so that your audience exchanges some information about themselves, specifically their name and email, in return. Once they receive value from your content, they may want to learn more about the company. This improved trust and interest may lead to new or increased sales. There are other forms of visual content your audience may find valuable. You can use them as separate pieces of content to share via social media, or you can add them directly into blog posts. For example:

  • pictures or memes

  • presentations or webinars

  • tables, charts, or graphs

Related articles

What Is the 5s Methodology? (With Examples and Benefits)