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The Ultimate Guide to Content Marketing for eCommerce Businesses

by | Nov 10, 2020 | Content Marketing, ECommerce

The internet is one of the most powerful tools that any business owner can take advantage of. Today, it’s even possible to run an entire business from a smartphone.

The absolute best way to use the internet to grow and sustain your ecommerce business is through Content Marketing.

This Ultimate Guide to Content Marketing is specifically focused on eCommerce businesses, but the information in this guide will be helpful to anyone who wants to use the internet to grow their business and increase sales.

Not sure where to start?  This guide will help you adopt focused goals, understand your target audience and figure out the right kind of content that best fits your market.

In this guide, we will also cover different social media platforms with specific strategies for each, graphic design, how to do successful blogs and even using influencers and internet celebrities to help grow your brand.

Finally, we’ll go through the expectations required of your time and resources for an effective campaign and what skills and talent that will be needed in building a successful marketing team.

You will also have a better understanding of what may make the most sense for your business.

This could be doing it all yourself, building an in-house marketing team or outsourcing part or all of it to a professional, expert agency.

In the end, this guide will help you make the right decisions!

The bottom line is that if you’re not using content marketing to its fullest potential, your business will never reach its fullest potential. Let’s change that.

Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about how to use content marketing to grow your e-commerce business.

 

Adopt Smart Goals

The first step you should take with your content marketing campaign is to set smart goals.

You may have heard of “Smart Goals” before. Smart is a simple acronym that stands for “Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely.”  It’s important to keep these in mind.

Your overall goal may indeed be to get more sales, but you must be more specific about the goals that will achieve more sales.

Here is an example of some specific goals you may want to focus on:

Get your Website traffic up to 100,000 visits a day.

Have a Social Media Presence with 50,000 followers.

Build an Email List of over 50,000 subscribers.

Produce 10 High-Quality Videos for social media.

Write 10 Amazing Blogs to distribute on the web.

As you can see, there are many parts of a content marketing campaign, and your job will be to prioritize a list of Smart goals in order to achieve the big picture.

You should prioritize your goals based on what you think you need first.

If you already have a great website with a lot of traffic, perhaps you focus on social media.

If you have no blogs in circulation, you should consider writing those blogs.

Don’t have a large email list? Work on that. No videos? Work on those.

The priorities given to the goals of a good campaign may be different for everyone.

What are your target numbers for each goal? Set your targets and measure your progress.

Of course, make sure your goals and targets are attainable and realistic.

It would be great to have a million people following you on social media within a week’s time, of course, but that’s probably not realistic.  So keep it real.

Carefully consider the relevancy of your goals to your higher goals.

You should also give yourself about six months to review your goals and how far you’ve come regarding your targets.

From start of production, distribution and giving your content enough time on the web to reach your audience… six months is a good idea for time.

Have a Thorough Understanding of Your Audience

One of the absolute most important things to consider before communicating anything to anyone is something called “audience analysis.” This is the research of your target audience.

The entire reason behind content marketing is to effectively establish a relationship with your audience.

You need your audience to feel like you understand them.

If you have ever had the experience of looking at a brand or business and thinking “Yes, that’s exactly what I need!” you already understand how important this principle is.

None of this is an accident.  In order to understand your audience, you need to know what audience you wish to communicate to.

Consider the basics:

Age

Annual Income

Geographic Location & Time Zone

Hobbies/Interest

Ethnic Background & Spoken Languages

 

It’s also helpful to understand what their buying habits may be, what kind of television shows or movies they watch, what music they listen to, hobbies, interests, etc.

The good news is all of this demographic information is readily available and able to use to thoroughly understand your audience.

Big tech companies like Google, Facebook, Instagram, and so many others are constantly collecting demographic information in nearly every detail and category you can imagine.

That information is then made available to other businesses and marketing companies in order to analyze and target audiences.

Acquire as much data as possible.

In fact, failure to narrow down your audience can easily result in wasting tens of thousands of dollars on your marketing budget.

You’ll also be left with a ton of content that you’ve created that your actual audience wouldn’t find interesting or engaging.

Defining your target audience is more time-consuming than it is difficult. It’s not hard, but you must be thorough and make sure you’re getting as much data as possible.

With all the right data, for instance, an athletic apparel company could deduce that their ideal customer is a male in his late 30s or early 40s who enjoys casually exercising to stay in shape.

After that, getting data that appeals to a more niche market, perhaps you wish to appeal to an audience that specifically enjoys running or jogging in order to stay in shape.

And even beyond that, maybe you want to appeal to an audience that favors jogging in the city and is perhaps going for a more urban theme and look with their apparel.

Consider all the details your audience may favor.

Compare this to simply defining your audience as male and interested in fitness.

When trying to be competitive in any market, you have to find and understand your niche. Many times, the more you can narrow down your niche, the better.

The last thing you want to do is appeal to a generic audience.

The better that you understand your audience, the more you’ll be able to think like them, and literally, have a real relationship with your audience.

From here, you’ll give yourself the best shot at offering the right solutions that are specifically catered to your audience. That’s a win.

One of the most important gains you will receive from understanding your targeted audience is knowing what their “pain points” are.

This will allow you to craft a message to your audience that will specifically speak to what may be bothering them, and how your brand or products can serve as their solution.

Target Them With the Right Type of Content

Once you have identified and completely understand everything about your audience, it’s time to focus on communicating exclusively to them.

Now you’ll need to determine the primary methods that you can use to reach them. This will also require a healthy amount of time and research.

The first thing you should do is to make your branding a mirror of your audience. Consider what they may look like, how they speak, specific nuances in the language they use when they talk.

If you’re targeting an audience in a certain geographic region, learn as much about that region as possible.
People in California, for example, tend to be a bit of a different style in how they talk, dress, interact with others, etc… then say an audience in Texas.

In other words, what you really want to do is personalize your content to your audience.

Creating a marketing persona is also a great approach.

Let’s suppose you have a line of products you would like to sell to gamers. The gaming community has their own lingo, style, and ways of expression.

You need to be able to speak in their language, so to speak, when marketing to them. You need your audience to feel as if you are one of them.

Once you completely understand and can personally relate with your audience, carefully consider what kind of content would best appeal to them.

Sticking with our example of marketing fitness apparel to the gaming community… Maybe you will highlight designs and themes of your apparel that appeal to gamers.

Gunnar Eyewear is an excellent example of a company that markets its products to gamers… a match you may have never associated with eye glasses before.

Be creative and check all the boxes so that your content absolutely appeals to your target audience.

Next, you need to consider what platforms your target audience uses to find content.

Imagine trying to target a member of your brand’s audience on a platform

Even though plenty of younger individuals may be active on TikToc, for example, that typically isn’t a platform that people use to keep themselves updated with brands they enjoy.

Instagram, on the other hand, is one of the primary ways in which people search for brand-related content.

So, try your best to avoid making assumptions about your audience’s online habits based on their gender, age, etc. Please do a fair amount of research on this.

This is especially true for companies that can benefit heavily from posting photos, such as a clothing brand.

To elaborate on what type of content you should use to target your demographic, let’s take a look at some of the primary ways you can reach them.

Social Media

As previously mentioned, social media is a gold mine when it comes to potential interactions.

One of the greatest features of using social media for your content marketing campaign is that it’s very easy to set up and create accounts is completely free.

Although social media is often thought of as a platform dominated by teens, 71% of adults with internet access use social media.

Almost any business will benefit from having a strong presence on social media, especially eCommerce online retailers.

One of the most important things to remember for a social media campaign is to offer a much less formal way of marketing and communicating.

Remember that social media is primarily a place where friends gather to be… social.

It’s important for you to become part of the conversation rather than simply appearing as an advertisement.

It’s important to catch attention through being engaging. If you’re doing it right, others will share your content.

One post might not only be seen by hundreds of people, but if they begin sharing your content, you could easily reach an audience of thousands or even millions.

Here are some tips for using social media for your campaign:

Focus on the platforms your target audience uses

Remember to respond to comments and questions.  Be interactive.

Posting images and videos are very important and get shared the most.

Boost or Promote posts to increase engagement and visibility

Partner with others and align yourself with social media influencers

 

Now let’s talk about some of the best platforms to use for your social media campaign…

Facebook

Facebook is King and is where everybody is. With nearly 1.5 Billion users, it attacts many different audiences, interests and potential customers. In fact, an entire guide can be written regarding marketing on Facebook alone. Also, users spend more time on Facebook than perhaps any other social medium platform, averaging about 40 minutes a day for a single user. On Facebook, you can even create a custom page for your business, interactive groups to appeal your audience, and you can even process sales directly from your Facebook page! You can also use Facebook ads to precisely target your audience by age, location, gender and even hobbies and interests.

Twitter

Twitter is not usually thought of at first for eCommerce marketing, but trends show this to be changing quickly. With about 800 Million users, 52% of it’s users say they’ve bought a product they first saw on Twitter. In fact, 81% of Twitter users indicate their purchasing decisions were impacted by Twitter more than television commercials. Like Facebook, posts are shared, or re-tweeted, and Twitter often comes across as more personal than other platforms. There are a vast number of influencers on Twitter and it also has paid advertising options.

Instagram

Instagram is owned by Facebook and is entirely built around sharing photos and images.
With over 500 Million users, there’s also a wide number of audiences to reach on this platform. You can also easily add links to your photos to get traffic to your website or other social media platforms. The most important thing to remember about Instagram is that it’s all about photos and images, so you’ll want to especially focus on your graphic content as this is entirely what makes an impact on Instagram.

Pinterest

Pinterest is probably the most unique social media platform in that it was initially created for people to “pin” and organize their favorite websites on the internet. But since its founding in 2010, it’s become so much more. It has more than 320 Million users and roughly 80% of all users are women. Pinterest has a few things going for it that make it an amazing choice for your campaign. First, not only is it free but it’s one of the least expensive platforms to do effective ads on and is the second largest source of social media traffic to Shopify-based retail stores. Because Pinterest also focuses on websites, content ranks rather high on SEO and very often, Pinterest pages come up high on Google searches. Also, the average ecommerce sales order from Pinterest is $50, which is higher than any other social media platform. In fact, 93% of users on Pinterest use the platform to research and plan purchases! It’s no wonder why Pinterest is becoming a hot spot for eCommerce businesses.

YouTube

Youtube has now become the biggest media company in the world. 5 Billion people use Youtube every day. That’s far more viewers than on the most popular television networks combined. And although some may not see Youtube as a traditional social media platform, and it’s much different from the other platforms listed… it’s absolutely important if you’re doing video content. The best part of youtube is the cost. It’s absolutely free. Youtube allows you to put a commercial on it that may cost into the tens of thousands of dollars on TV, for absolutely nothing. You can pay, of course, to have your video commercial appear as an ad on other videos, of course, but it costs absolutely nothing to post your own content. The downside of this is that in order to draw a large audience to your videos, you’ll have to spend a bit of time and strategy to have the best results. Like Twitter, there’s also a lot of influencers on Youtube, and one great strategy to use is to contact them and send them a free sample of your product to review to their audience. And of course, you can also link your Youtube channel to all other social media platforms as well.

It’s very important to understand that each platform is different and you must properly curate your content to match the platform you’re posting on.  Small details like the sizing and dimensions for images, for instance, are different in each platform.

Take the time to research each social media platform and remember that every platform is continuously updating and making changes.

For instance, Facebook has recently been making video content a huge priority.  Videos posted on Facebook are more and more being prioritized by Facebook to be shown to more people.

You can combine this with well-crafted copy to get your followers’ attention and redirect them to your brand’s website.

Interestingly, you should only post a short clip of the actual video on Facebook as opposed to an entire video.  Keep your videos short and to the point.  15-30 Seconds is plenty of time for a direct, entertaining, and impactful video.

When people are on social media, their brains are already in the mood to see bite-sized pieces of content and consistently experience something new.

So, it’s fairly likely that your audience will click away from a video if they see that it’s eight minutes long.

Posting a shorter video will increase the chances that your audience shares your video, as well.

If enough people share your content, you have a chance to go viral, which exponentially increases the number of people who see and engage with your post.

A nearly identical strategy could be used for Instagram, but the bulk of your copy should be confined within your actual image.

One of the best ways to about this is by including quotes, as people are likely to share them if they resonate with what your content says.

This isn’t to say you should avoid caption in your posts, though— you can still include valuable information about promotional offers, campaigns you’re currently running, etc.

Blog Content

Although we live in a world where people have become used to the instantaneous gratification that services like Google can provide, you simply can’t ignore the utility that blogging can have for your e-commerce business.

Sometimes, people want to slow down the way they consume content and would rather scroll through an article as opposed to watch a video or navigate through an Instagram feed.

After all, this is why people still choose to read books even though they have access to an infinite amount of information through the Internet.

Posting high-quality content on your website blog is one of the best ways to facilitate people finding you on their own throughsearch engine results.
When writing a blog, you’ll also need to consider and prioritize SEO (Search Engine Optimization) as this will go hand in hand with your blog content.

Because Blogging is one of the primary ways to use SEO strategies to draw traffic to your brand, having a blog for your brand is extremely important for content marketing. It is, after all, content!

Many people may become intimidated in writing a blog, but that’s not necessary. It is necessary to understand that Quality content and writing are essential for an effective blog.

One of the best paths to understanding what a successful blog looks like is to simply study other successful blogs. Take note of the writing style and how the content is presented.

Si Quan Ong is an excellent blogger and has written an article (a blog) that has a wealth of specific tips and information on how to create an excellent blog. Check out “17 Blogging Tips for Beginners (that actually work)” to get a good idea for solid blog strategy.

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Video Content

Video content is one of the most intimidating aspects of content marketing for many people, but it’s really not that hard. You don’t have to be a professional filmmaker or producer to create quality content.

The great thing about video content is that you can produce impactful content that is done in a simple way, with a smartphone camera and an editing app… or you can go full scale with a professional camera, sets, and advanced editing software for a professional-grade commercial.

Sure, the overall quality is important, but what’s more important is the content of your video. There’s no shortage of videos that have gone viral, seen by millions, that were simply filmed and uploaded from a phone.

So the first consideration for producing video content is to consider you the time and resources you would like to put in. If you’re planning to make videos a major priority of your content, you may wish to invest in a good camera and access to professional-grade software, at the very least.

Even if you wanted to go with the absolute basics, vlogging (or video blogging) is an excellent way to begin putting together effective video content. You can probably get started producing quality blogs right now.

You can capture incredible videos from modern smartphones. In fact, current generation smartphone cameras have been used to film entire movies that have been played in theaters. Of course, if you want to make an investment in a quality, dedicated camera for filming, you can do this as well. There are a wide variety of excellent cameras available today for a fraction of the price they were just a few years ago.

The other thing to consider regarding equipment and filming is the lighting you’ll use. Lighting is one of the most important considerations for any video production. Whether you’re strategically filming in natural light, or you have access to an artificial light source, there are plenty of options that are available and inexpensive.

Again, in the end, it’s the content that will become the most important.

Here are some tips for creating great video content:

Write a Script and Plan Out what you’ll be Communicating

Keep your Dialogue Simple, Clear, and To The Point

Memorize Your Script and Practice before filming

In creating your script, consider what you want the purpose of your video to be and include a call to action. Videos give you a unique chance to communicate with your audience in a very personal way.  Your voice, tone, and body language will all be presented.

Keep in mind exactly what reaction from your audience you are going for.  After they watch your video, what do you want them to do?  Think in those terms.

There are two kinds of content that will make any video better.  Information and Humor.  It’s obviously important to give your audience information, as this is the fundamental reason for making a video in the first place.  Make sure your information is clear, direct, and only conveys one or two ideas.  Maybe you choose to focus on the Quality of your product and how Inexpensive it is right now.  But don’t overload your message with too many other ideas or you will lose focus and your message will become diluted.  Keep your message simple.

Always end your video with a call to action.  Tell your audience what to do next.  Whether it’s having them call a phone number, go to a website, or find you on Facebook… it’s very important to tell your audience exactly what to do.  The power of a good call to action cannot be understated.

Be honest and authentic.  When we think about videos as traditional TV commercials, we often think of over-the-top sales approaches that come across as a carnival barker.

On social media, people are attracted to more casual authenticity and people whom they can relate to personally.  Remember, with content marketing, it’s all about creating relationships and connecting with your audience.

The other thing to remember is that you can produce videos that don’t even feature anyone in the video.  You can completely do videos that entirely and exclusively feature your product.

This is especially true for products that are best seen in action, such as a high-quality blender.  A video that simply shows your product and how it works, from different angles, so that your audience has a thorough understanding of your product can be extraordinarily effective.

Even less-animated products like jewelry or hardware can benefit from product videos, as you will allow your audience to see it from multiple angles, get a feel for its size and presence, etc.

Keep in mind that having a collection of high-quality videos will also provide you with plenty of content to post everywhere, including your social media platforms, website, and of course, Youtube.
There’s a wealth of information and tips you can find on the internet regarding producing quality video content for content marketing, especially on social media platforms. Jen Chen is an expert in video content, and has written an excellent article you may want to check out.

Graphics & Design

A picture can say 1,000 words.  Make no mistake, graphic design is everything.

The most successful brands always use images, pictures and design to attract people.

From the colors and images, you choose to define your brand, to the fonts and typeface of your text, all of this is vitally important to how the public will perceive you.

Graphic Designers are vital to the success of a business, and typically make $48-80k annually.

Some of the many things that you will be doing that are dependent on graphic design and artistic talent will be:

Website Design

Logo

Images and Photography

UI Design

Branding Guide

Absolutely Every Graphic and Image used in your campaign

Some of the other considerations to be aware of will be the science and psychology of color.

Science has shown us that different colors have different psychological effects on people.

This is why major brands carefully choose the colors they use.  Which colors attract customers, and which colors can drive traffic away.

Here are 5 more reasons that Graphic Design is important to your business:

First Impressions Matter.  The first time someone looks at your brand, in any capacity, it sets the tone for everything else.

Capitalize on that first impression by using relevant, current graphics that tell the story of what your business is all about.

When a customer hears about your brand for the first time, they will likely do a bit of research into your business.  Graphics will be the absolute first thing they see.  So make graphics and design one of your most vital priorities.

It’s important to make your design consistent.  Consistency is credibility.  You want to present a sense of stability.  You don’t want the look and feel of your brand to be all over the place.

Graphics are also important as a means to share images and information with ease to others, both on social media, email campaigns, blogs, or any other content marketing.

Consistent images also work as a form of conditioning for your audience. Repeating the look and design, over and over, casts a psychological association and attachment to your brand.  This important aspect of your marketing is paramount for a successful campaign.

Remember, Creativity Kills Competition.  Repeat this mantra over and over.  The more of an impact you can make on anyone who sees your brand, the more they will remember you.

Be creative and unique to set yourself apart from all others. Graphics are the absolute easiest way to stand out from the crowd.  Making an impression and being remembered is your absolute goal with graphic design.

Above all, graphic design is important because it conveys a message.  In the beginning, we mentioned that a picture can tell a thousand words.  The message your images communicate is everything.

Think about the central thought or message you wish for your graphics to display, and what emotional impact your images will have.  Customers usually make the decision to buy based on emotional pushes, not by rational pushes.  Graphics are the first initial emotional push.  It’s almost subliminal.  They set the stage for everything else that will lead to a sale.

Graphic Design might seem like a lot… because it is. The good news is that there are graphic design professionals you can bring aboard your team. There’s also graphic design agencies you can use to purchase professionally produced designs that will really give you a powerful edge to the look and feel of your brand. Ultimately, the images, pictures and visual graphics that represent your brand are supremely important. It’s one of the first things to consider regarding content marketing to define your brand.

The Importance of Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO and Content Marketing literally go hand-in-hand. The relationship between SEO and Content Marketing is much like peanut butter and jelly. They perfectly complement one another, and in many ways, you can’t have one without the other.

A good way to think about the relationship between SEO and Content Marketing is like this:

Think about the internet as a huge map of the world. Your Content is a location on the map. SEO is the directions to your Content location. SEO points everyone in the direction of your content, and without it, there’s little chance that anyone would randomly find your content.

No matter if your content is a blog, a video, social media posts or your website, SEO is required in order to to be found.

So let’s talk about how SEO works…

As in the name “Search Engine Optimization,” SEO utilizes search engines like Google to point people to the location on the internet to your content. In other words, when your searching for something on the internet, SEO makes sure that you come up on the list.

SEO works by using keywords. For instance, within a Blog for your brand, you will want to use certain words that you know will be common search words people will use when searching the web. If you sell running shoes, for example, you’ll want to use the words “running” and “shoes” often enough in your blog so that if someone is searching the web for “running shoes,” they will be directed to you.

Of course “running shoes” are very common words. There are probably hundreds if not thousands of sites and places on the web that feature running shoes.

You should strategically consider what keywords you would like to use to distinguish yourself and bring more traffic to your content.

First, you need to make sure your SEO keywords used in your content will match your brand and product. This is the part where keyword research happens.

There are several tools on the internet you can easily find, both paid and free, that will help you figure out which keywords to use for a good strategy.

For instance, would it be more effective to use “running shoes” or “runners shoes?” Believe it or not, that simple difference can make a huge difference. Which words would attract the most traffic?

Despite the keywords used may mean the exact same thing, there could be a mismatch in what your potential customers are searching for on Google.

More importantly, two similar keywords often have different search volumes, trends and levels of competition. Choosing relevant and higher volume keywords will give you better results compared to other semantics used.

The best strategy to use is to really study and completely know your niche market.

Here are some tips to study your market to come up with the most effective keywords to use in your content:
Talk with your existing customers. Get to know them and the terms and words they use to discuss and describe your brand.

Think from the perspective of your potential customers. If they were to talk about
Your products and brand, how would they talk about them?

Get involved in the online communities that surround your niche. Read forums and discussions online and social media. Study the ideas being expressed.

Make a list of relevant topics being discussed that relate to your brand. The topics and subjects discussed by the people within your niche can be used to find keywords that you may have never even considered.

SEO is about one thing… how many people will see your content on the web.

You won’t get very far if your clients aren’t able to find your website on their own.

Fortunately, proper SEO makes it possible.

By using specific keywords in your content your audience is looking for, you’ll be more likely to appear in search results related to those terms.

You can also increase your ranking by focusing on your meta description, including keywords in your image names, and optimizing your site’s loading speed.

You’re also able to run pay-per-click (PPC) ads to help drive traffic to your site.

These are based on your audience’s demographic information, such as their age, gender, keywords they search for, etc.

Shared Content

When someone else shares your content, there’s a strong chance it will be seen by more people than normal.

In fact, it’s likely this number will be exponentially higher.

So how do you get people to share your content? There is definitely a science to getting others to share your content.

Here are a few tips in helping to make your content much more shareable.

Create Great Content that is Worthy of Sharing.
Putting time and thought into your content to make the best content you can is the
Obvious first consideration. Create content so good, people will want to share it.
Create Curiosity
Sometimes, purposely creating gaps in information to hook your audience with curiosity can be an extremely effective tool.

Make sure your Content is Easy to Share.
Adding a set of links to various social media platforms to easily click and share your
Content to a reader’s social page makes your content easily shareable with one click.
Casually invite your readers to Share your Content.
Asking your audience to share your content will work if done correctly. The wrong way
To do it is to use words or a tone that feels like your asking for marketing help. But if
Your content is done in a way that it contains valuable information, and your content
Seems like it can HELP other people, writing something like “feel free to share this
Information with a friend if you think it can help others too.” Simply giving permission
To share your content For Free can go a long way, and implying your readers can Help
Others will give them an opportunity to be a hero.

One of the best ways you can do this is by reaching out to an influencer in your industry.

Not only will you gain access to their followers, but they’ll also likely be an authority in your space.

This means having them vouch for you will build significant trust in your brand.

Using Influencers

Using Social Media Influencers to forward your Content Marketing campaign is a strategy that can completely help get your content seen by thousands if not millions more people. Most people understand that a celebrity endorsement of a product or brand can open up a world of new business, but did you know that you have access to the same? Read on…

Using influencers in content marketing is quickly becoming one of the most efficient and effective ways for a business to reach potential buyers. A few years ago, a small upstart that was selling horror and zombie-themed bumper stickers using social media. A very niche market. They offered a few of those stickers to Lady Gaga who, at the time, was one of the number one most popular pages on Facebook. The singer and actress loved them and gave them a shout out on her page about the stickers, and suddenly, her millions of fans took notice and started buying the stickers. It was the single most effective marketing tool ever used to expand and grow the brand.

These days, there are a huge number of social media influencers and most of them are not necessarily big-name celebrities. What some call “micro-influencers” are simply social media figures on popular platforms like YouTube who have a rather large following. If a micro-influencer within your niche, for instance, has a following of 100,000+, they can easily and significantly boost your sales and brand identification with a mere shout out or endorsement.

For many entrepreneurs, influencer marketing relationships are a new concept and you may not yet understand how to leverage this new channel for maximum benefit.

It’s important to research as much as possible to best work with social media influencers.

Obviously the first step would be to make contact with an influencer and invite them to try out your product. Send them a free sample. Let them check it out with no obligation. Beyond that, here are some great tips to build influencer relationships and potentially, get your brand out to millions who previously would not have known about you.

* Give an influencer complete creative control.

Social Media influencers know what they’re doing and how to reach their audience.
Don’t try to “manage” them or even suggest to them what to say or how to present
Your product. Just let them be and let them work their magic.

* Engage with influencers who love what you’re offering.

Influencers will never freely promote a product that they don’t believe in. They
Already have a relationship with their audience that’s based on what they
Genuinely believe in.

Make it Mutually Beneficial
Yours will not be the only pitch an influencer will receive. Likely, they receive a lot
Of pitches every day. Celebrate your influencers publicly, invite them to any events
Or networking opportunities you may have, and help them as well in any way you
Can. An influencer too is also looking to expand their audience.

Sponsor Influencer give aways or contests

Many influencers do contests or giveaways on their platforms. Offer them some
Products to give away. It gives you free advertising from an influencer and gives
Them an opportunity to give away prizes to their audience.

It all begins with identifying influencers and who you will be choosing to contact and build a potential relationship with.

Remember that influencers aren’t necessarily celebrities or well known “names,” but simply those on social media who have a large audience.

Be patient, never pushy, in building your relationship and always listen to their perspective.

They might have a wealth of knowledge and ideas that will better reach potential buyers within your niche.

Utilizing influencers as part of your overall content marketing strategy is definitely a smart move.

The Power of Landing Pages

An integral part of your content marketing strategy for your e-commerce business is incorporating landing pages.

For those who are unfamiliar with the term, a landing page is simply a page on your company’s site that leaves the visitor with very few actions to take other than to buy, learn more, or subscribe to your email list or newsletter.

One of the best ways to think of a landing page is like this: imagine if you had a brick or mortar business, and what your storefront would look like.

You would want it to be attractive. You would want the public to easily understand exactly what you’re selling and invite them to easily come in and buy.

Obviously, one of your first considerations for an effective landing page is all about graphic design, which we covered earlier in this guide.

It will most likely be your graphic designer who will be in charge of creating your landing page.

Your landing page might include the opportunity to sign up for an email newsletter or learn more about your product line.

Other than a call to action button that can be used to accomplish this task, the only other content on the page may be a promotional piece for one of your products.

Interestingly, video content is particularly effective on landing pages.

So, an informative video to help nudge them in the right direction.

At the very least, landing pages can be used to obtain the email address of a potential customer.

It can’t be understated how important a landing page is for your eCommerce business. You’ll definitely want to learn more about specific strategies to use in creating your landing page.

It’s a good idea to search the web for landing pages and taking note of what the most effective pages look like.

This opens the door to an entirely different form of marketing that’s renowned for being one of the most effective.

Email Marketing

Although email marketing is used in nearly every niche and industry, it’s particularly effective while as part of a marketing strategy for e-commerce.

In general, you want to have some sort of call to action at the end of every email that you send to members of your audience.

The main complication, though, is that it can be difficult to determine when you should send an email in the first place.

With e-commerce, your audience will expect to receive emails on multiple occasions.

This typically includes:

Order confirmation

Shipping updates

The notification of the package was delivered

The option to leave feedback based on their experience

Since emails with this information will always be something that your audience is interested in reading, your brand can highly benefit from any calls to action in these messages, including promotional offers, suggested products they may enjoy, etc.

At the very least, you inform them of a discount that they may not have been aware of otherwise.

You can also use this form of communication to establish a rewards program for previous shoppers.

Although the structure may vary from brand to brand, this most often includes providing discounts or exclusive offers to customers who have purchased a certain number of products, it’s been a certain amount of money, etc.

Not only will this serve to increase your numbers conversions, but you also significantly strengthen the relationship that your brand has with its customers.

Keep Track of Your Analytics

As you may expect, it’s exceedingly difficult to keep track of your performance if you don’t consistently monitor it.

So, make it a priority to frequently check your analytics to determine whether or not your marketing strategy needs any fine-tuning.

Fortunately, the platform that you use to host your e-commerce website will provide you with all the information they need.

You’ll be able to see how much traffic you’re getting to your site and from what source it comes from.

Using Google Analytics to keep track of your web traffic is very important. You can monitor all aspects of your traffic, and use the data to strategically make changes to grow more traffic.

In general, you should be seeing a modest increase in traffic and conversions over time. Keep in mind, though, that there are plenty of factors that could influence your store’s overall performance.

For example, the unforeseen COVID pandemic drastically reshaped the landscape of many industries, and countless online stores suffered as a result of decreased consumer spending.

Similarly, the time of year or social trends could have an impact on your total number of sales for a particular product.

This is particularly true when it comes to fashion.

If you are seeing the numbers that you’d like, consider taking some time to better define your audience.

As long as you provide quality content, the issue may be with who you’re targeting and not the content that you’re targeting them with.

What to Expect of Your Time & Resources

Before you begin your Content Marketing Campaign it’s vital to understand what kind of investment of your time and resources this will require.

Assuming you want to do a high quality, full-stack content marketing campaign, consider what you’ll be needing.

Most businesses can expect to put in about 40-120 (or more) hours per week for a successful campaign.

This is why many businesses will have an entire department of at least three or more full-time employees to run campaigns.

From the time it takes to produce quality graphic design, to the time required to write great blogs, to maintaining and using email lists and utilizing social media, this all requires much time and effort.

After time actually spent, the tools needed must be considered.

A couple of fairly powerful computers are needed, for instance, for quality graphic design and video editing. Professional Grade software is also needed.

For producing higher quality videos, additional hardware may also be required.

Businesses that plan to do everything in-house can expect to monthly spend a fairly large amount in wages and resources alone.

On top of that, you may be spending money on additional services that will get your content out to as many people as possible on the web, through Google Ads or other means.

Many businesses find the best bang for their buck is to utilize a professional agency to take care of all of these things for them, for far less expense.

In the end, it’s entirely up to you.

If you wish to do a smaller scale, more modest and limited effort, you absolutely can run everything on your own, but it will still take a respectable amount of your time.

You just need to be aware of the time and resources you’ll be putting in to go full scale.

The last thing you ever want to do is waste your time and money. Please consider all of this wisely.

Building the Team

Whether you’re doing a content marketing campaign all on your own… or will be putting together a team to do this for you, here’s what you should know…

There’s a wide variety of skill sets needed to pull off a successful campaign.

A good strategist will analyze data, numbers, and stats to create and adjust the direction of the campaign as a whole.

A good graphic artist will use their creative and artistic talent to produce amazing imagery that will attract people to your brand.

A talented writer will be your wordsmith to produce engaging copy for blogs and other writing that will define your business.

If you plan to produce videos, which are an important component of a successful campaign, consider someone with video production and editing skills.

Sure, there are single individuals who possess the “full-stack” of skills required to make all of these parts work together for a solid campaign. You may be that person.

But usually, it takes a little help from a few talented people who work as a team.

There are countless stories and examples of a one-person show doing everything and getting their business off the ground with sustained growth all by themselves… but these stories are usually very exceptional, and thus become newsworthy.
We all know that even Steve Jobs needed a small team in the beginning.

Whether you plan to hire a team to get your content marketing plan going, or get an agency to carry out your goals, it’s important to know the skills and talent needed.

The more you know, the better decisions you’ll be making.

Utilizing Content Marketing Can Seem Difficult…

…but it doesn’t have to be!

The most important thing to know about using a Content Marketing Strategy for your brand is that, like any other component of your business, it’s vital to your success, and needs your attention and focus.

The difference between the marketing aspect of your brand is that it will bring everything else together and increase sales and sustainability. This is the component that takes everything to the next level.

Like other parts of your eCommerce business, you make choices. You can do it all yourself, or you can get help from expert professionals.

You can do this partially, or as a whole. It all comes down to the talent and expertise you have or wish to recruit. Or if it’s more cost-effective, to hire an agency to take care of it for you.

Ultimately, it’s important for you to know and understand as much as possible about content marketing and the value it brings to your company to maintain sustained growth.

With the information in this guide, you’ll be well on your way to making the decisions that are best for your business.

Want to learn more about how we can help? Feel free to get in touch with us today to see what we can do.

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