When I first started with the idea of becoming a content writer professionally, many questions popped up in my head, the biggest being “how to become a content writer.” Upon initiating my research on the topic, I came across many websites and advertisements that spoke about hiring content writers, but none that worked towards explaining the ‘how-to’ of it all. Therefore, my journey towards getting started in this field was filled with a lot of trial-and-error methods and tricks that were followed with a lot of rejections too. But once I got the hang of it and started exploring my options professionally, I realised I didn’t understand something that was one of the most important aspects of content writing – WHY is content important for a business? How does high-quality content help businesses with their marketing and sales promotions?
Before talking about the importance of content, it is crucial to understand the meaning of content.
What is content?
Content is essentially what you look for and find when you search for any form of information. Whether you talk about that blog on tips for grooming your dog, or an article on which shares to invest in, or even a LIVE video from your favourite comedian – everything you consume in the form of information is content!
So, it is safe to say that the scope of content writing, as well as content marketing, is something that is forever evolving! As a content writer, thus, you can engage yourself with different types of content writing such as –
1. SEO content for digital mediums like websites
2. Academic content for educational purposes
3. Blog content for blogs of course
4. Technical content like journals and instruction manuals
5. Business content like business proposals and presentations
6. Media content like scripts for videos
7. Creative content for user engagement and stories
8. Copywriting for advertisements or publicity material
But why does content matter so much to businesses? Why do YOU as a content writer have that important role in a marketing plan? This brings us to the next section.
Why is content important for businesses?
They say, ‘Content is king’ and rightly so, because no matter where you go, your first source of information on any topic is always some form of content. Most companies have already shifted their core marketing strategies to the digital medium, be it through their website promotions, blogs, social media engagement or email marketing strategies.
According to HubSpot’s State of Marketing report, 53% of marketers have labelled content creation as their top priority!
Search Engine Optimization
As someone who is reading this post on the internet and has a bit of understanding of the digital world, you would agree when I say that it is not a common practice for one to go beyond the first (or max second) page of a search engine when looking for something specific.
Thus as the name suggests, search engine optimization is an important part of every brand’s digital presence to be easily available to the customer through search engine’s first ten ranked results. With constant updates to the search engine algorithms, it is now becoming more and more important for brands to be up-to-date with the latest content guidelines and trends that would make their digital presence a good fit for the search engines. SEO content is thus a crucial part of any brand’s digital marketing plan.
Consider this – a novel from your favourite author and one from an author whose work you didn’t quite enjoy. Great quality content works exactly like the work of your favourite author – it keeps your engrossed throughout and makes you want to come back for more!
Social media engagement
Let’s assume that a footwear brand decides to go digital. Would you as a social media user consider engaging with the brand solely based on its sales promotions for its products? I’m assuming that your answer would be no! To remain relevant for the audiences on social media, a brand in 2020 has to go way beyond the realms of its product promotion. Brands that constantly put out sales announcements often lose out on customer attention and follower base. Thus, to maintain positive engagement and relevance in a follower’s limited attention span, brands today need high-quality content that not only trends well but also maintains a connection with their brand.
Building a relationship with the audience
Let’s say you buy a new steam iron but even though you have a basic idea about its usage, you are still finding it difficult to work your way around it. What do you do next? You reach out for the instruction manual or head over to the internet to find a solution to your problem!
Great content does not automatically translate to long-form trending content like blogs and articles. All forms of brand communications with users are important forms of content that help users find solutions to their queries. Well-developed content strategies include plans for content to help improve the brand’s reputation and trust among its audience. All forms of communication that a brand has with its users (former, current, and potential) are important place holders in a content development strategy. In the scenario mentioned above, it may be in the form of a manual in the product box, or how-to blogs and videos on the brand’s digital profiles.
Lead interest and generation
Consider the last thing you searched for online. Let’s take a bag for our example. You searched for a bag, liked it, added it to a cart but for some reason, you didn’t complete the purchase. Next time you went online, you came across an ad for the same bag that made you instantly head on to the website to complete the purchase. Why did that happen? While a severe need for the bag could be one of the reasons, another important factor that would make one go back to complete the purchase could be the content on the ad!
To advertise a product well to the customer, brands depend heavily on high-quality content that not only grabs attention as catchy material but also conveys sales features to the customer to help them make that final decision to complete purchases or even start with a fresh product/service transaction!
Building website authority
Quality content with high relevance and important information often gets ranked higher on search engines. Thus, building an effective content plan is crucial for all brands to bring in more traffic that relates to your content and views it as reliable and important information.
Content makes it all come together
Thus, content is what makes a brand’s digital presence click. From finding new customers, to keeping the existing ones engaged and satisfied, it is a brand’s content strategy that plays an important role in all marketing efforts. Content, in today’s world of digital transactions, is the heart of a business model.
This is why content writers are an important resource for companies to ensure that their brand name is not just associated with their products or services but it also connects with the audience in terms of building trust and relationships, maintaining effective communication and executing essential marketing strategies.