Content is the backbone of the internet. If you think about it, nearly everything you view online is content (e.g. videos, articles, blog posts, infographics, etc.) of some kind.
Here’s Google’s definition of content marketing:
A type of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs, and social media posts) that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in its products or services.
Content marketing is arguably one of the most important internet marketing strategies because, without it, many other strategies wouldn’t exist (or wouldn’t be effective).
Here are two primary reasons why content—and marketing that content—is beneficial for nearly all businesses:
- Content educates potential customers about your product or service. Why would someone pay you for something if they don’t know what they are purchasing? This is the void content fills.
- Content provides an opportunity for you or your business to be a thought leader in your industry. Being a thought leader results in excellent brand exposure and can open up many doors in your specific space.
Having an industry blog and company newsletter can be very helpful in connecting with current and potential customers.
The Ahrefs Blog is an example of an industry‐specific blog, the ultimate aim of which is to entice visitors into purchasing (or at least trying) the Ahrefs’ software suite. We do this by showing how helpful it is for marketers.
The Ahrefs Product Blog is an example of a blog that covers company and product specific news aimed at informing and communicating with current customers.
“Linkbait” creation (and promotion)
‘Linkbait’ is content that’s specifically formulated to attract links. It’s something so cool, valuable and unique that (given the opportunity) any industry blogger/influencer would be hard‐pressed not to link to it. These links then help to improve the site’s rankings in search engines.
It can be pretty much any form of content (e.g. video, infographic, blog post, long‐form guide, SlideShare, etc.), but, as mentioned above, the primary aim is always to attract backlinks.
Why? Because attracting inbound links will:
- Drive referral traffic to your website (from the linking site).
- Help improve rankings. This, in turn, will lead to more traffic to your website via organic search.
Guest blogging (or posting) is the act of publishing content on another website.
Here are a few reasons why you should guest post:
- It can drive referral traffic to your site;
- You can link from the guest post to a relevant piece of content on your site;
- Guest posting can help you build relationships in your niche or industry;
- Excellent brand exposure (if you pick the right sites).
Video creation (and marketing)
Using video to promote and market your business online is super powerful. Don’t believe me? Check out these video marketing statistics.
You should also take a peek at the Ahrefs YouTube Channel. You wouldn’t expect a video covering SEO audits to do over half a million views, but this is actually our most popular video on YouTube…
Webinars are basically online mini‐courses.
They can be great forms of content, especially if you are selling a digital product.
Content syndication is when a piece of web‐based content is republished (i.e. syndicated) by another website. Content syndication can be an excellent source of referral traffic.
Content doesn’t need to be visual to be effective. Podcasting is an audible form of content that is excellent for brand building and growing an audience.
There are two major strategies when it comes to podcasting:
- Start your own podcast;
- Appear on someone else’s podcast.
Both strategies can be very effective at marketing your business online and building relevant industry relationships.