You might be wondering why there is suddenly so much focus on content marketing or thinking to yourself “hasn’t content always been critical?”
The reality is that content is the beginning before there was anything else, there needed to be content. Content has propelled the Internet, and it continues to be a top factor in the success of websites in general but in particular in the ranking of eCommerce stores.
Even with the massive advances in technology and digital marketing, content still delivers a significant impact with regards to bringing in prospective customers and driving sales. Instead of being less important, the content has become the most effective method of establishing an ongoing relationship with your target audience.
It’s also important to remember that content marketing can take many forms.
Why is content marketing so important?
The content you create today will live for decades to come on the Internet and serve to establish brand presence and reputation. Engaging user content will drive traffic, sales, and leads for the same period of time through sharing email newsletters and search engine rankings. The content you create will continue to circulate.
Creating and marketing exceptional content starts a chain reaction. The more engaging and informative the content, the stronger the impact it has, the greater the reach it generates. Content marketing needs to play a role in your digital marketing strategy.
It’s best to think of content marketing as your tireless employee that works 24/7 to bring people to your website. Utilized well, it will help your business to continue growing even while you’re sleeping.
We’re going to cover 16 tips that will help you establish an effective and efficient digital marketing strategy for your e-commerce store. We encourage you to put the strategies to work as soon as possible because it’s only a matter of time before it starts to pay off.
Writing High-Impact Headlines
As with any good strategy, we are going to start with the basics, creating great headlines. Your headlines have a significant impact with regards to your search engine optimization and how you appear in Google and other popular search engines.
- Use power words: using words that are able to convey feeling is a great way to appeal to the senses of your prospective customers. Ballistic, skyrocket, devastating all evoke a reaction from the reader, and on the other, the end of the spectrum so do jubilant, mind-blowing, beautiful and triumphant. There are many “power” words that you can choose from but be aware that including too many in a single headline can come across as spammy.
- Sex sells: as anyone who’s ever watched a beer commercial knows, sex sells. It’s important to strike a delicate balance, but leveraging sex appeal within reason can help drive traffic to your site. Just be aware that going overboard or too risqué can alienate potential customers.
- Generate intrigue: it’s important not to give everything away and headline. You want to pique your prospective customer’s curiosity without giving away the solution your content seeks to provide.
- Exceed expectations: being conventional is a great way to avoid standing out and when your content marketing, that should never be the goal. With your headlines, it’s okay to be bold, be the square peg in the round hole as they say. Just make sure that your content lives up to the headline.
- Learn on the go: following great content creators is an excellent way to learn what works. Sign up for the blogs and newsletters of the heavy hitters in your industry and determine what’s working for them. Pay particular attention to headlines that are attracting the highest number of interactions (comments, shares, etc.) and never be afraid to take chances and experiment.
Write Productive Content
Plentiful, creative, prolific are all synonyms that apply to exceptional content. Engaging content is imperative. Readers love to engage with what they read online if that content appeals to them. Understanding your audience is an essential first step to writing engaging in content. Once you know what your audience wants, follow the below steps to make sure they engage with your content.
- Make it viral: how do you create viral content? It doesn’t have to be as difficult as you think, if you’re generating quality content, it should spread on its own. Giving your readers a reason to share the content will only accelerate it. Unique or valuable content, special offers or discount coupons are great ways to ensure your content makes the rounds. Quizzes are another fantastic way to encourage your prospective buyers to share your content.
- Leverage social trends: social media today thrives on hashtags, trends change on a daily basis and provide an excellent opportunity to take advantage of where people’s interests lie. Having a social calendar that outlines all of the “special” days of the month and their trending hashtags from years past is a great way to tailor your content to what’s already going be popular in the newsfeed.
- Don’t worry about length: that’s not to say you should write a 20,000-word manifesto, but feel free to exceed the 300 word commonly acknowledged limit. The widely held belief that Internet users have a short attention span and won’t read lengthy content is entirely a myth. The added benefit is search engines love long content as long as it is concise and relevant.
- Include visual content: the popular social media tool Buffer has extensively studied the impact of images on social media content. It found that tweets with images received 89% more favorites and were retweeted 150% more than posts without. While images may not have the same impact on long-form content, it is still important to include them. As the saying goes, “a picture is worth 1000 words”.
Even though you may be aware of the need for content marketing, structuring it in an efficient way is another matter entirely. It’s important to build out the infrastructure to streamline the delivery of the content through the plethora of digital marketing channels that businesses are using today. Regardless of the industry, the capability to curate, create, disseminate and monitor content is critical.
- Map out your content: mapping out the content marketing strategy should be your first goal. Start by exploring the topics that are relevant to your target market, segment those out into subcategories and think about them with regards to your short-term and long-term goals. Creating an editorial calendar is a great place to start when thinking about content.
Ideally, you want to plan your activities for the next month, quarter, and year. Your content calendar should include any topics that you be blogging about, the social media posts that you plan to use to promote your content as well as a posting schedule. Just bear in mind that this will be a living document and you’ll need to adjust your strategy as you become more familiar with your audience and what they react to.
- Take advantage of content marketing tools: given its scope, it’s easy to be scared of content marketing, but the Internet is flush with guides and tools to help you do it right. Whether it’s forming a strategy, curating content, or monitoring performance there is a tool to make it easier. A great starting place though is Hubspot’s free marketing plan template creator.
- Consider outsourcing: a large number of today’s e-commerce businesses are outsourcing their content marketing. Outsourcing can be an economical and highly productive approach to content marketing, but it needs to be combined with an in-house resource to keep the pulse of your brand at the forefront.
- Plan out your workflow: content marketing includes not only content creation and management but also content creation, optimization, regular engagement, and the workflow that you develop needs to factor in all of the stages. Keeping these phases top of mind while you define the roles and assign the responsibilities of your content marketing to your team or outsourced resource will make the process easier.
Accelerating Your Growth
- Re-purpose your content: either manually or using a service such as Missinglettr, make sure you regularly come back to your highest performing content and share it again. Though it may seem spammy, sharing your content more than once both in the same and in new channels allows you to reach your target audience in different time zones or with different online behaviors.
- Establish influencer relationships: influence marketing while popularized by Instagram, is present across every niche. Leveraging influencers, whether they’re bloggers, journalists, customers or popular on platforms your target audience frequents is a powerful way to drive results. It is well worth taking the time to identify and establish relationships with them.
- Create timeless content: while capitalizing on the topic of the day or trending hashtags can generate quality results in the short-term, evergreen content or content that is always relevant needs to be a part of your long-term strategy. Great examples of timeless content are how-to guides, case studies, customer testimonials, and tutorials.
Implementing the above tips will serve as a great way to shape and drive your content marketing strategy for your eCommerce business and drive more traffic and conversions through your shop.
If you have any tips that we’ve missed, please share them in the comments section below!