3 core benefits of creating a content brand to hone your brand grow your audience
Creating a content brand has been the subject of multiple views and opinions. One such view held by Mark Schaefer in his article entitled "Content Shock: Why content marketing is not a sustainable strategy", predicts the inevitable demise of content marketing in its current form.
The growth in content, Schaefer says, is exceeding humans capacity to consume it: In a situation where content supply is exponentially exploding while content demand is flat, we would predict that individuals, companies, and brands would have to pay consumers more and more just to get them to see the same amount of content.
And that is exactly what is happening.
Content marketers are quickly achieving diminishing returns. The increase in generic, undifferentiated content is drowning out the good content, and brands are starting to feel the pinch.
This sounds rather depressing. Just when you were convinced that content marketing was the way to go, market dynamics have pulled the rug out from underneath you.
What to do?
The solution is simple really its what media properties have done through the ages. New magazines, newspapers, and cable channels are created, and each one finds its own unique audience. Each one creates its own content brand.
Think of magazines such as Forbes, Fortune and Inc., and how they dominated the business market. Then look at upstart business magazine Fast Company. It appealed to a new niche audience of startup entrepreneurs and investors while disrupting the business publication marketplace. Fast Company created a unique content brand.
You Can Create a Content Brand Too
A content brand is an independent media property that stands apart of your companys brand. It attracts a specific, niche audience because it offers valuable, entertaining content with a unique point of view, but it ultimately exists to create demand for your companys products or services.
What can a content brand do for your own brand?
A content brand is brilliant in its simplicity and in its ability to solve the todays marketing challenge caused by the internet-induced fractured media environment:
1. Creates a Built-In Source of Leads
The problem with yesterdays marketing was that you had to constantly go to the well when you wanted to generate leads. To fill your pipeline with fresh prospects you either had to advertise, go to a trade show, or hire telemarketers to annoy enough people into your sales funnel.
When you create a content brand, such as a blog, a podcast, a video series or a membership site, you create your own loyal audience that hangs on to your every word. You speak to their unique world-view by offering valuable content that appeals to them like no other content brand can.
They become your subscribers; just like a newspaper or a cable company has subscribers. And because they are your subscribers instead somebody elses subscribers, (and your content has already pre-disposed your audience to your approach to solving problems), your advertising is free and more effective!
2. Your Content Brand Helps You Cut Through The Generic Content Noise
Creating content that appeals to your niche audience is like creating a homing beacon that attracts your ideal customers. Its like when youre at a party and the crowd sounds like an undifferentiated wall of noise. You cant distinguish any particular conversation.
But if somebody calls your name, even if theyre on the other side of the room, youll turn your head to find out whos calling you.
Thats the effect of a content brand. If youve done your homework and identified your audiences needs, wants, desires and worldview (just like a managing editor of a magazine would), and you create a content brand that speaks directly to your audience, you can attract them like magic!
About the author
Fernando Labastida is the Content Strategist for nonprofit fundraising software vendor Kimbia, Inc. He speaks and teaches digital marketing in both Spanish and English. He volunteers at the Economic Business Growth Business Incubator in Austin, TX, and has spoken at the SXSW Latinos in Tech program and the Congreso Internacional Emprendor in El Salvador, among others. http://emprende.us/ Fernando organized the first Latin American track for SXSW Interactive and moderated on a panel about Startups in Mexico. Additionally he also co-organized the debut of the Americas IT Forum in Austin and is the founder of Latin IT Marketing and currently writes at Emprende.us. http://emprende.us/