Content and inbound marketing is not new but is rising in importance for businesses of all sizes. To see some evidence of this, check out the Google Trends graphic below:
However, I also think that it reflects how we as customers, consumers and clients search for, find and learn more about what we want to buy, whether it is for business or personal reasons. I also think it reflects our preferences for how we like to buy and not be sold to.
But, content marketing is not just about creating your own content, it’s about creating an eco-system. Valerie Maltoni, a leading blogger and digital strategist, in an interview that originally appeared on ExploreB2B puts it really well when she explains her own content strategy:
“The blog was always the last thing I did during the day – or should I say, night – and the first place where I tried new ideas in digital marketing, studying the results for potential use. It’s the place where I took all the risks, every day. But writing on the blog was only part of the equation. Commenting on other blogs, extending discussions, helping others with research and content via interviews, and writing for other sites with higher visibility…made it all work.”
So, it’s not just about creating your own content and sitting back and waiting for the leads and customers to roll in.
Yes, you need to create content for your homebase, whether that is your website, blog etc. But, you also need to get out there (like the worker bee in the picture) and pollinate the work of others by sharing their content, participate and extend their conversations.
By being interested, useful and social first are you more likely to earn the trust needed to get a chance to be interesting and show off your stuff.
So, if you’ve decided that 2013 is going to be the year that you get really stuck into content marketing, don’t forget to figure out who is going to be in your content marketing ecosystem and who are going to help pollinate.
Thanks to SteveNakatani for the image.
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