Origin and Evolution of Content Marketing
Content marketing is the process of creating, selecting, and distributing valuable and compelling content to attract, acquire, engage, and retain a clearly defined target audience. Its origin does not have a specific date, but there is information related to its early beginnings.
It all goes back to the year 1836 when John Deere, known as a businessman and the most successful inventor of his time, started manufacturing agricultural machinery. Given the success of his company, it continued its operations after John’s death in 1895. They decided to create a magazine for farmers called «The Furrow» with the intention of educating farmers of that era about new technology and how they could become more successful farmers and entrepreneurs; all through content marketing. The magazine’s main strategy has always been to tell stories that people enjoy reading and provide them with applicable knowledge.
Content Marketing vs. Traditional Marketing
Content marketing and traditional marketing apply different communication strategies to reach the target audience. Since the rise of social media, companies have been convinced that having a presence on digital platforms is a great benefit due to the speed at which they can reach information to potential consumers. Let’s look at some advantages and disadvantages of content marketing compared to traditional marketing.
Advantages of Content Marketing
- Greater reach: Content marketing allows reaching a broader audience due to its quality, value, and relevance.
- Increased trust and credibility: Brands can build a reliable and solid image, enhancing credibility among their target audience.
- More control over the message: Compared to traditional media, content marketing provides greater flexibility in the way content is communicated and presented.
- Longer-lasting and more effective: Content creation has higher relevance, duration, and effectiveness compared to traditional marketing methods, making it one of the most popular marketing strategies nowadays.
Disadvantages of Content Marketing
- Requires time and resources: Creating and promoting quality content demands significant time and resources, making it potentially costly.
- Not immediate results: Content marketing may be discouraging for some brands and professionals as it does not yield immediate results.
- Demands specific skills: Producing high-quality content requires professionals with specific skills and expertise in the field.
The methodology applied in content marketing is based on four fundamental phases:
- Attract: By producing relevant content, the goal is to attract the ideal audience to your website.
- Engage: Through messages or forms, the objective is to convert visitors into customers.
- Sell: If a user shows interest in the product or service you offer, it’s the ideal occasion to convince them that your offer is the best among all others in the market.
- Delight: This methodology aims to foster customer loyalty, as the interaction between the consumer and the company should not end with the sale. The objective is to continue offering users useful content and excellent service.
Success Stories of Content Marketing
- HubSpot: As one of the leading marketing and sales platforms, HubSpot has built an engaged community through the content it publishes and the material it offers on digital marketing, sales, and leadership.
- Nike: By sharing stories of overcoming obstacles and achievements, the sportswear company disseminates motivational content using storytelling about the athletes it sponsors.
- Coca-Cola: The soft drink company has used content marketing to share its message of happiness.
Content Marketing and Artificial Intelligence
People will always seek relevant information and material, making content marketing a crucial component of marketing strategy. However, the production and distribution of content will be significantly impacted by artificial intelligence. With the help of AI, content can be more precisely tailored to the audience’s needs. Marketing professionals can use AI to find content ideas quickly and reliably. Lastly, AI is more accurate than humans in analyzing large-scale data, allowing advertisers to evaluate content success more precisely and make real-time adjustments. Marketers must adopt this technology to stay ahead in the industry and provide personalized experiences to users.