The marketing mantra of 2014 is "relevant and shareable content." Everyone's talking about content marketing strategies and we're heading to the California Association of Boutique & Breakfast Inns' (CABBI) annual InnSpire ConferenceConference to join the conversation and share the value behind strategic content marketing.
Kevin Guill, Director of Digital Services, is providing CABBI InnSpire attendees with the fundamentals of a strong content marketing strategy and how to execute that strategy. Specific questions Kevin will be addressing at InnSpire include, how do you determine who your audience is? How do you determine what content to create? What role does social media play in promoting content? What is a content marketing strategy? How often should you promote content? But first:
What is content marketing?
Simply put, content marketing is making sure your website and social networks have fresh, relevant and valuable information for your target audience with the intention of turning them into customers. Fresh content isn't only valuable to your guests, it's valuable to your ranking on search engines.
It is not to be confused with paid marketing or advertising. Content marketing helps your customer learn more about your product or service and your industry to make them more knowledgeable when it comes time to buy. With this strategy, the idea is that the customer will become loyal to you because of the value you provide and will purchase from you.
Why do I need a strategy?
You wouldn't start building a house without blue prints and you shouldn't start marketing your property unless you know what you're trying to achieve. You must identify your audience, understand what information they're looking for and provide that information in formats they want. During his presentation, Kevin will share one of the most effective ways to identify your target audience, but one quick easy way to identify your audience is to look at previous reservations and find commonalities among your guests. To get you started, finish these statements:
- I want to be known for:
- What are my guests' challenges/questions:
- What kind of content do my guests want:
A strategy allows you to focus on creating content that your guests are already consuming and desire as well as establishing consistency in publishing content.
I don't have any content!
Chances are you have more content than you think; it's just not in a formal inventory. Take stock of what you have, from blog posts, to FAQs, to online reviews and document it. Now, think about the statements above. What can you create that helps make your guests more knowledgeable about your business?
Go for the goal!
Identifying your audience, your content, and how you want to share your content are the first few steps. Now you need to set goals so you can measure your results. Examples of goals include:
- Drive traffic back to my website
- Have an engaged audience
- Have content that people want to share to increase brand awareness
- Generate revenue
Your goals will influence the type of content you create, how you share it and how your audience reacts to it and if they will share it.
When we get back from the conference, we'll share how to repurpose successful content and what social channels you should be using.
2014 InnSpire Conference and Trade Show Schedule
InnSpire's annual conference in Seaside, California is February 23-25 and RezStream is providing an educational workshop on social media and content marketing strategies as well as moderating a round table discussion on recent changes at Google and how it'll affect your website and your business. If you can't make our sessions at least stop by and say hi at our booth at D23!