Content marketing is not a new concept, but it’s one that we’ve been hearing an awful lot of over the past 12 months or so. So to start with, what exactly is content marketing?

Content marketing is the creation and distribution of useful and interesting content, which can be anything from blogs to videos, with the intention of attracting and engaging with a particular, targeted audience in order to build leads and sales.

It has proven an extremely useful form of marketing, especially with the rise of social and Google’s Panda and Penguin updates, which have put more onus on the quality of content, rather than the inclusion of lots of keywords and other black hat SEO practices which the search engines are attempting to crack down on.

Why is it important to web designers?

As a part of the overall web marketing strategy, content marketing is a key anchor point to ensure a site gets the best ranking and engagement that it can. It is also extremely useful in providing a call to action as part of inbound marketing.

It should be distributed in a number of ways, including:

  • Social media channels

  • Email

  • Newsletters

  • On site

In order for a website to be successful these days, it’s necessary to think well beyond static text and design. Modern websites need to include a regular blog and social sharing as a basic starting point at least.

The importance of branding

Creating a website is part of helping to create an overall brand personality for that business. So, the designer may have created a logo and colour scheme which reflects the personality of the brand and makes it easier for consumers to relate to on a subconscious level.

Branding should also be uniform across the board, so will be used in stationary, on Facebook and Twitter and so on. The content that the company produces should match this personality; this makes it easier for to create a conversation with potential customers, as well as interact in a two-way communication, whilst encouraging them to buy.

For web designers and studios, this is part of the overall SEO that needs to be carried out on a site for it to be ranked. This doesn’t necessarily mean that designers should create the content themselves, but it does pay to get a professional to do it if you can’t write for toffee, for example.

Mix it up

It’s advisable to make sure that a variety of content is distributed across a variety of mediums. In some cases, this will give backlinks which are excellent quality which will further improve SEO.

Content can include:

  • Blogging – industry driven, not product, with a view to having the blogger become a thought leader in that industry and distributed through social media, website and blog syndicates

  • Photos and images – should include ALT tags and keywords and be syndicated on sites such as Flickr and Pinterest. Image-based infographics are popular and can be distributed through a variety of mediums such as social media, email and website

  • Videos: web videos are growing in popularity, as are video infographics and are great for both B2C and B2B marketing. These can be distributed on YouTube and Vimeo

  • Whitepapers & articles are a very good call to action and can be downloadable through signing up to a website, through email, or through distribution syndicates

For the designer and agency who make themselves an authority on content marketing, it adds a whole new dimension as to what you can offer your customers. Advising on the latest techniques, creating downloadable content that will build a leads database and by utilising keywords through a variety of channels, it can be the difference between a happy customer and unhappy, as well as helping to gain an edge over the competition.

Author Bio: David is the SEO whizz at My Social Agency and has spent many years in the business, previously working with well-known brands in UK retail and entertainment. A family man, David is also a self-taught developer and has a genuine and driving passion for his work.

image credit: pcanzo / 123RF Stock Photo