I’m sure there’s no need to tell you about the importance of marketing – it could be the single biggest factor for a company’s success. There’s already a vast history of products that failed spectacularly due to poor marketing. A perfect example would be the Snuggie blanket, which saw massive commercial success starting in 2008. Branded as the Snuggie, this blanket took off and sold 10’s of millions of units within the first 2 years.
Interestingly, this type of blanket had existed for decades before 2008. It had been launched 10 years before that as the Slanket, but failed because of poor marketing. That also happened with the original incarnation, the Freedom Blanket. Both of these products were sleeved blankets as well, but they weren’t widely known so they didn’t get many sales. The Snuggie was marketed perfectly and sales went through the roof! The same has been true for many brands – reinvention can be the difference between stagnating and succeeding.
A couple of decades ago marketing was all about awareness and getting out there. You have to be known before you can get any customers. Then you also need to push your offers and the reasons why people should choose you over your competitors. Direct marketing tactics were the way forwards – advertisements on TV & radio, billboard ads and product placement tactics.
These days people have become overwhelmed by the amount of ads and brands that are being shoved down their throats every day. The public doesn’t respond to traditional marketing in the same way because they don’t trust it anymore, it’s been over-used and the returns have fallen.
Creating a Relationship
The best way to market these days is to create a relationship with your customers. Get them involved in your brand in any way possible, once they have a good experience with you they’re likely to stay. But how do you get them in if not by advertising? Well, by giving them what they want – for free and with no strings attached.
I don’t mean give your product away. I mean give them some information or entertainment, something they either want or enjoy. Give them content! Content marketing is the best way to create a buzz around your product, and it has a lot of importance for building basic customer relationships too.
Content marketing is versatile too. It isn’t just a technique to secure customers through blog posts. You can adapt methods from content marketing and use them in all areas, from presentations and proposals to funding applications. Using an online marketing proposal template when dealing with clients or investors is a great way to bring your proposal to life without breaking the flow of your presentation.
What Content Marketing is
Content marketing is the use of guides, articles, ebooks and more to give your potential customers information, entertainment or opinions. The reader/viewer uses this free info for their own purposes but it creates a kind of psychological debt with your brand. The consumer will also begin to trust you more as long as your content is good, so they’ll be more comfortable spending with you.
Most consumers believe that any company willing to provide useful content is interested in building a good relationship, so they’re also more likely to be reliable. This increases the chances of them using your business.
It’s also been shown that consumers are much less trusting in general these days. You can counter this by letting them get to know your brand through your content. It eases them in and before they know it, they’ll already feel comfortable dealing with you. By creating this type of positive relationship, you create a brand loyal customer who could well be with you for life, making repeat purchases for the duration.