Do The Best Content Marketing Agencies Have Some Practices In Common?
Did you know that, when organizations use inbound marketing, they experience a 62% lower cost per lead compared to companies that follow only traditional marketing strategies? What makes the world go round these days is content. And people search for what they need by submitting queries in search engines like Google. Also, it is not that expensive to create a content marketing campaign compared to, say, doing an advertising campaign on TV. So, it makes total sense to be looking for the best content marketing agencies out there to drive targeted traffic to your website.
Content marketing services can include blog articles, videos, webinars, case studies, eBooks, infographics, social media messages, and even emails. The list is just endless. Companies that are considered an authority in digital marketing have a lot to gain from spreading awareness for the inbound movement. That’s exactly what we do since we strongly believe in the value of branded content. Not only have we embraced content marketing and included it into our strategy, but we also encourage our clients to start a content strategy. The main reason is that it is an effective way to get your USPs in front of the eyes of your ideal clients.
Thus, the most successful companies in content marketing have a single focal point: they help clients grow their businesses. So, providing services that can boost their content marketing and lead generation is a must. In this article, I’ll get a little deeper into the list of content marketing services that companies offer to provide clients like you with the tools to achieve inbound goals.
You can also check out eLearning Industry’s content marketing services to learn about the solutions you can wrap your marketing strategy around.
What Is Included In Content Marketing Services? Best Practices To Look Out For
Have you ever wondered how many firms you might need to collaborate with to actually set a content marketing campaign in motion? You see, some folks hesitate to even get started with content marketing because they can’t find an all-in-one solution.
For example, one agency might run their SEO, another might have control over their social marketing, and yet another might do the content creation for them. However, keeping track of what’s happening when all these people are involved is a bit challenging, don’t you agree?
Before outsourcing content marketing, there are certain best practices you look out for when deciding on a content marketing firm. The top content marketing solution companies in the market usually offer all of the services included in this list. Including content creation, which seems to be the worst nightmare for most.
So, let’s take a look at what kind of content marketing services are needed so that big brands and small businesses can make it into the content marketing world.
1. Content Marketing Strategy
The most eager clients usually want to dive right into content production. However, as a client, you must understand that having a sound content marketing strategy is vital before getting into writing.
By developing a content strategy, a leading marketing agency can help you understand where you stand currently. Also, with an SEO competitor analysis, they can identify what you need to do to get to where you want to be. Be it getting better rankings in the SERPs or more marketing qualified leads, building a content strategy will bring you valuable results.
But for your strategy to be successful, first and foremost, there needs to be an organized process. Meaning, creating your buyer personas is a must. Even if you have them set, the best content marketing agencies out there can evaluate the quality of your buyer personas. Also, they can identify ways to make them even stronger! You see, the key here is using the refined personas and aligning them to your future content creation. All based on search intent.
Apart from improving buyer personas to better match your content strategy, you’ll also want your agency to perform an SEO audit of your existing content. Maybe your company is one of those having a handful of ungated assets, like, say, whitepapers. Or you might have some interesting blog articles that could be reformatted or, better yet, put into an eBook to increase lead generation.
Identifying all the above can be the starting point of your content creation. Finally, an agency that knows what it’s doing should be able to provide you with a content marketing editorial calendar.
In this way, your content efforts will be much more organized.
2. Content Creation
Maybe your team simply doesn’t have time to create content for a new campaign. Or you might belong to an industry that makes it difficult to create engaging content for your preferred audience. Or you simply don’t exactly know how to write for your ideal audience.
More times than not, the concept of creating content is incredibly overwhelming. Especially for businesses that have been using traditional marketing methods until now. So, for these cases, digital marketing agencies usually offer content creation services. By doing so, the best content marketing agencies demonstrate the value of content in a strategic way. In fact, we’ve noticed that walking clients that are interested in content marketing through the option of content creation can be very beneficial.
Content creation is an art. And it actually has to follow SEO best practices if you want to have the greatest return on your investment. The mediums a digital marketing agency might employ can vary. Actually, this has to do either with client needs or their industry. From my experience, what I can share is that most businesses can leverage a combination of content marketing services. Some of the best strategies are combining a blend of blogging for social media and SEO. Also, it might even be more effective to include premium content creation and email marketing.
In addition, when teaming up with an expert, it would be great to ask for their help in revisiting your brand’s buyer personas. That way, when at this stage, the digital marketing experts will be able to determine which types of content would be best for your business needs. This is closely related to where your audience likes to hang out online. Whether you are leveraging an in-house content team or decide to outsource content creation, this is crucial.
3. Content Promotion
If your business is one of those wanting to get their content in front of the right audience at the right time, then you’ll need a content promotion strategy. Having the logic that, if you create something, people will come to check it out is not enough.
The best content marketing agencies know that organic traffic is essential. But they also know that promoting content via the proper channels is a crucial step to help spread brand awareness. At least that’s what we try to do for our clients.
The main focus of each content marketing campaign should be to expand every client’s current reach. Thankfully, there’s a vast amount of outlets for content distribution. For example, many agencies leverage channels like LinkedIn, Medium, Facebook, Quora, Reddit, and Twitter. But they also work with alternative distribution or content discovery channels like List.ly, Outbrain, Feedly, Oneload, and Taboola.
An expert content marketer will have the means to identify which channel can generate the greatest return for you. Plus, they should also be able to save time and budget at the same time. So, to begin with, your agency should do an analysis of your current distribution channels. Also, they must figure out how your competitors are promoting similar content. Of course, such an analysis might typically include channels like social media and email. Again, by using your buyer personas, marketing experts can uncover alternative platforms you might have been overlooking up until now.
Another smart solution agencies use is getting brands to connect with industry bloggers and influencers. Wouldn’t you love it if a big name in your niche started sharing content from your website? It’s an excellent way to gain instant credibility for your brand and reach a highly targeted audience at the same time.
4. Content Optimization And Maintenance
Consumers aren’t shy about doing their own research, and that’s why aiming to get better SERP rankings should be your number one goal. Thus, content optimization and maintenance go hand in hand in order to have any success with content marketing.
If you want your content to be found by those looking for solutions to their problems online, you should know that creating content is just the tip of the iceberg. You see, to win the battle and get featured as one of the best results on the first page of Google, your blog posts need to be both visible and optimized. That’s how you can make an impact on the business’s bottom line and get the most value for your money spent.
Agencies that offer a content optimization service can help you get increased visibility and conversions. They manage to do so by using keyword research and SEO best practices. But it’s not just that. They also focus on understanding user behavior and know how to analyze competitive insights so that they can adjust their strategy. Please keep in mind that you should think of SEO content optimization as an ongoing process.
We all know that Google loves fresh content. But, if you leave your content untouched for years, it will become outdated. As a result, visitors who land on an outdated page won’t get what they need. Consequently, they’ll leave your website unsatisfied. You wouldn’t want that to happen, right? User Experience is key, and it’s every business’s job to delight customers.
So, when working with a digital marketing agency, make sure that they find out which pages should be optimized and updated based on the current business goals.
5. Content Reporting
The soundest way to manage the effectiveness of a content marketing campaign is to be able to measure what you sοw. Consequently, this is a basic rule to which the best content marketing agencies abide. So, an expert digital marketer should be able to offer content marketing reporting services.
Before becoming a client, make sure that the agency you want to work with has the expertise and the right reporting tools to help you understand what’s going on. For one, the use of numbers will help the agency to adjust and optimize the content marketing strategy. Plus, you’ll also benefit as you can track and evaluate the value of the services. Of course, a professional digital marketer would never bog you down with too much information; they’d give you an idea of what works and what doesn’t, and how the content strategy affects your bottom line.
But to determine how successful a content marketing campaign is, firstly, you’ll want to determine what success is for your business. For example, do you want to increase social media engagement? Or are you looking to boost organic traffic? Maybe you are simply aiming to get news leads or even double your webinar registrants.
If you’re looking for examples, please take a look at these metrics and KPIs:
Knowing what your end goal is will help you identify the KPIs that have meaning and will lead you to achieve your business goals. Then, your digital marketing agency can have a better idea of how to run the reports. And they’ll know exactly what information they should share with you to help you understand what works, what doesn’t, and if any changes need to be made.
So, what are some content marketing best practices? As we’ve mentioned above, a top content marketing agency should be able to provide you with a content marketing strategy. SEO expertise is key here—a lot of research is required to define the best keywords to help you reach your target market organically via the search engines. Also, an SEO competitive analysis can help identify keyword gaps compared with your competition, and it can also reveal opportunities you can easily leverage to get better rankings in the SERPs.
Of course, SEO research is not enough, because someone has to create the content for you. If your SEO content writing skills are not that sharp, then it would be better if the marketing agency could provide you with the respective content as well. And let’s not forget about content promotion. You need to get your content out there to the right people. Sure, content marketing aims for organic traffic, but social media marketing can also help boost your content visibility. Plus, if the marketing agency has expertise in your niche, you can get your campaigns in front of your ideal audience. That’s why niche agencies perform better for certain industries. For example, we’re rocking the eLearning content marketing space! Similarly, if your product or service belongs in another niche, you can team up with the relevant content provider.
Let’s not forget about SEO optimization and maintenance. In case you have no idea how to run a blog, then you’ll be in better hands if you let a professional handle it for you. Or you could simply opt to submit sponsored guest posts to niche-related websites so that they can have control and help you out with any changes needed. Last but not least, content reporting is key. You need to know how your content is performing. So, please make sure that the marketing agency you choose is thorough and set on tracking performance.
Do you have any questions about content marketing? Feel free to leave a comment or simply go ahead and read how you can start your first content marketing campaign.