Content marketing is a fundamental component of any marketing campaign, but it’s easy to get bogged down with all the jargon. So whether you’re a content marketing veteran in need of a refresher course, or simply looking to brush up on your content marketing know-how, this jargon buster will provide the answers.
What is content marketing?
In order to fully understand what content marketing is, the experts at CMI have provide a nutshell definition:
Rather than promote products and services through hard selling and the purchase of advertising, content marketing involves a more contemporary approach.
With the modern customer in more control than ever before, it’s important for companies to demonstrate their value before the sale in order to attain custom.
This means that marketing budgets are being spent on creating relevant and useful content for a particular target audience where prospects can choose which information to read.
With the digital age creating a boom in information, those engaging online find that their attention is divided and therefore must choose which information they wish to read, creating a whole culture around content creation where competition is the fiercest it’s ever been.
Why is content marketing important for business?
In an article for BrightLocal, Sherry Bonelli states;
Content is one way to demonstrate your brand’s integrity and help your audience trust you.
In a concise format, this neatly sums up why content is important for business, but there are a whole range of additional benefits:
- More traffic (both social and on the website)
- Higher visibility in searches
- Increase in potential conversion traffic
- Higher domain authority
- Improved brand recognition
- Increase in customer loyalty
When creating a marketing strategy that works, content marketing is likely to be at the heart of what you do. Many companies still struggle with demonstrating the ROI of content creation and this hinders the decision to launch a full content marketing strategy.
In the digital age, establishing a voice and being heard above the noise requires more than some product adverts. With click through rates as low as 0.05%, that means that there are just 5 clicks per 10,000 impressions. And even if a prospect does click through, there’s no guarantee that click will convert into a sale. Content combats this by increasing the time your customers spend with your brand.
Essentially, customers want to determine why they should trust you and what you can offer them that other companies can’t. This is particularly important for emerging businesses who have no brand recognition or loyalty and end up competing with international giants already established in their sector.
Content can take on more than just the written form, and can incorporate videos, infographics, social posts, eBooks, webinars, or any form of content that imparts information. Rather than heading straight for the hard sell, companies need to warm up their audience to the idea that they provide value and are worth listening to.
This building of trust is what incites brand loyalty. The alternative scenario involves no brand loyalty and is likely to result in a single sale to a single customer, instead of creating a lifetime customer who regularly returns for new and additional products or services.
With new customers costing as much as 5 times more than keeping an existing customer, this can have a big impact on your overall marketing budget.
Content marketing mistakes to avoid
Whether you’re embarking on a content marketing journey for the first time, or you’ve been doing it for a while, it’s important to avoid some of the most common mistakes as they can often have a detrimental impact on your overall strategy:
- Leaving out images – images are a powerful tool, particularly on social networks.
- Not sharing content – if you have content, share it. How else will people find it?
- Ignoring SEO – it might not be at the heart of your strategy but you can’t ignore SEO.
- Not documenting your strategy – you need to write down your strategy so you can monitor progress, prove ROI and ensure your team know what’s happening.
- Misinterpreting your audience – if you don’t understand your audience, you can’t create effective and valuable content for them.
- Being restrictive - don’t limit your ideas. The more creative you can be, the better.
- Not including CTAs – not including Call To Actions means you’re missing out on a prime opportunity.
- Creating boring content – boring content isn’t going to engage or produce results. Create something that is interesting, inspiring, valuable and relevant to your audience.
Content marketing jargon
Below we’ve collected together the most important content marketing buzzwords and terminology, and put them all into one place.
A/B testing allows you to compare two variables in order to determine which one performs better. This could be email newsletters, web pages, color schemes, and can also include the finer detail such as subject lines, CTA positioning and style.
Above the fold
This refers to the segment of a web page that can be viewed without the need to scroll down. Generally speaking, the most important information needs to be above the fold in order to entice the reader to read on. This terminology is originally from traditional print advertising in the press, where the adverts appeared before the middle of the page – where the broadsheet was folded.
Backlinks are where other websites have linked back to your article from other web pages.
Brand engagement refers to the ability to create meaningful relationships between the brand and its customers. Companies that are able to create effective brand engagement with their customers will see a significantly higher ROI. International giant, Coca-Cola, has established itself as a world-leader in brand engagement.
Buyer personas are fictional representations of your ideal customer that are constructed from previously gathered data about your real customers and are used to help guide future decisions. It’s likely you will need more than one buyer persona in order to accurately reflect your customer base.
Clickbait refers to content that deliberately encourages clicks through outrageous or unbelievable content titles. Some examples include:
- ‘Why Most Real Estate Agents Never Get Rich’
- ‘Man Tries to Hug a Wild Lion, You Won’t Believe What Happens Next!’
- ‘Can You Solve this Ancient Riddle? 90% of People Gave the Wrong Answer’
Also known as the CTR, the click-through rate is the proportion (normally as a percentage) of visitors to a particular web page that click through on a specific link. This is normally a metric used to measure the success of online advertising.
This is a type of marketing strategy that involves the organization, development and distribution of all forms of content for the fulfilment of a business objective.
In marketing, COPE stands for Create Once, Publish Everywhere, but has become an outdated term and so is more commonly now referred to as Create Once, Publish Enthusiastically, and pertains to the creation and publication of content in a content strategy.
Copywriting is as form of writing that specifically relates to marketing, often content marketing. The main body of the text is referred to as the copy.
CPA has two meanings; either Cost Per Action or Cost Per Acquisition. This is a pricing option where payment is only made upon a previously specified acquisition, this could be a completed form, a sale or a click. Many affiliate programs are structured this way.
Cost Per Click is a pricing structure used in PPC marketing campaigns. Payment is made per click on an advert.
CPM stands for Cost Per Mille (a Latin term for thousand). Cost Per Thousand is a common pricing structure in terms of digital adverts as payment is made on impressions, irrelevant of whether an action has been taken.
Also referred to as Pay Per Sale (PPS), Cost Per Sale is a pricing structure where payment is made based on the actual number of sales. This is very similar to the CPA pricing structure but requires a sale in order for payment to be made.
CTA is an acronym for Call To Action. CTAs are a component of a web page that require a specific action to be taken. Normally in the form of a button, or hyperlink, a CTA requires the site visitor to actively complete a desired response, i.e. ‘download’.
Curated content is content that has been collected together around a particular topic from other sources and published together. Many organizations curate content on their social media platforms in order to provide an in-depth overview of a particular topic.
Also known as a broken link, dead links are hyperlinks that no longer work. This could be a result of the web page no longer existing, or an issue with the website it is linking to.
The domain authority of a website is determined by evaluating the number of links on a website, the value of those links, and the website’s current search engine ranking based on the relevance to its industry.
Earned media is publicity that has been gained through your own marketing efforts without being paid for. Social media impressions gained through organic sharing are an example of earned media reach.
Email marketing is a marketing strategy that relies on using emails to distribute a commercial message. Email marketing is often a strong component of content marketing and is used to effectively distribute content to current customers and prospective ones.
Evergreen content refers to a specific type of content that is continually relevant despite the passage of time.
In digital marketing, a heat map is a visualization of how individuals interact with a web page based on data that has been collected. The brighter an area is, the more interaction it sees.
Influencers have large audiences of followers and have become part of a new marketing strategy known as influencer marketing where brands will enlist the services of influencers to help sell their products. This is a particularly popular tactic with vloggers and instagrammers.
Key Performance Indicators are measurable metrics that are used to determine if a company is achieving its business goals.
A landing page is a specific part of the website that is designed as an entry point and often requires information to be submitted in order to progress.
Lead generation is a tactic used in demand generation to identify potential customers through qualifying criteria. It often includes using landing pages as a way to gather the necessary information, including contact details.
Long-tail keywords are keyword phrases that consist of at least three or four words and are very specific to a particular topic. Long-tail keywords are used to help improve search rankings quicker and improve a websites overall perceived relevance.
Marketing automation is a term that refers to different types of software that can be used to automate certain processes; such as social media, emails and other such repetitive tasks. This tactic often allows marketers to free up their time to focus on other aspects of their strategy.
Newsjacking is a process of capitalizing a current news story and providing a new spin or unique perspective in order to align it with your own content marketing strategy.
‘nofollow’ is an HTML element that can be added to a URL to deter Google from distributing page authority along with the referral traffic. Essentially, these links will still send traffic to your page, but the backlink will not aid you in appearing higher in search results.
Off-page optimization is a technique used to improve the search rankings of a website by optimizing all elements of the website that occur off-page, including:
- Deep link ratio
- Link quality
- Brand mentions
Omnichannel marketing is a particular sales approach that incorporates a wide variety of channels in a seamlessly integrated customer experience.
On-page optimization is part of an SEO strategy that helps you to improve search rankings by analyzing and optimizing on-page elements such as keywords, headers, readability etc.
Owned media is a term that refers to media created and controlled by you. This can include blogs, social accounts and email newsletters.
Also known as skyscraper content, pillar content are long pieces of content that go into great detail about a particular subject. They are often internally linked to many other pieces of content on the website and form a fundamental part of a good SEO strategy.
Pay Per Click advertising is an advertising model used for internet advertising and is generally used to drive traffic. Payment is only made when the advert is clicked.
Return On Investment is the calculated financial return that is associated with a particular strategy, project or decision. ROI is used to determine the profitability of a venture.
Search Engine Marketing is a particular technique used to maximize the visibility of a website in search engine results.
Search Engine Optimization is a technique used to optimize web pages in order to appear higher in search engine rankings.
A thought leader is an established brand that produces thought leadership content. This type of content is often considered to be at the forefront of its industry and has built a reputation of reliability and trust.
Video marketing is a technique in content marketing that uses videos to engage with their audience. It is often used to promote a service or product and has become a key component of modern digital marketing strategies.