Seventy-eight percent of marketing executives believe that brand-specific content marketing is the future of marketing. Offering a more extensive market reach and a more effective and cost-efficient approach, it is no surprise that content marketing has become the practice of choice among modern marketing practitioners.

Those content marketing trailblazers have seen for themselves how content marketing helps improve brand awareness through customer engagement. According to Demand Metric, 60 percent of customers enjoy reading content that is relevant to the brand. In fact, 90 percent of them believe that there is something to gain from contents that are relevant to the brand/product. The benefit they enjoy has led 82 percent of them to have a more positive outlook on the brand/product, while 78 percent feel a personal attachment to the brand/product after reading the content. Ultimately, this influences the customers on a much deeper level as shown by the fact that 61 percent of customers’ buying decision is influenced by custom content.

But why is that? For the modern customers, simply knowing the brand and its products is no longer enough. In fact, 80 percent of customers today care about the experience a brand provides as much as its products and services. This is what content marketing provides: an experience. Through content marketing, brands can take customers through their brand journey.

Beyond that, content marketing allows brands to educate the customers about their products/services. Modern content marketing hinges on the idea that you need a market that understands why it needs your offering. In a sense, this approach to marketing doesn’t only sell your offering to an existing market, but actually creates a whole new market. What’s more, by providing valuable insights, you’re not only engaging with the customer, but also gaining their trust. That’s why 90 percent of the most successful content marketers prioritize educating their audience over promoting their company’s sales message.

In terms of budget, according to Demand Metric, content marketing costs 62 percent less than traditional marketing, while generating 3 times more leads per dollar spent.

There was a time when advertisements were the ‘king’ of marketing. They appeared everywhere all the time, speaking to the masses on behalf of the brands. In the internet era, direct mail emerged as an informative, low-budget, and effective marketing alternative. Any brand can use direct email to market the product. But this became too much. A study in 2014 shows that a person living in a city 30 years ago saw up to 2,000 ad messages a day, compared with up to 5,000 today. Soon, people learned to ignore the noise of advertisements on the television, on their web browser, and everywhere else.

Deviating from advertisement or direct email, content marketing, when done well, doesn’t just shout at the customers. It builds relationships and draws a full picture of a brand. In turn, it doesn’t just create customers. It creates loyal evangelists that trust your brand and will vouch for what it has to offer.

by Jeanette Tamara Pramono