You run into a lot of marketing purists these days. Each one swears their preferred channel is the ultimate solution for driving traffic, engaging audiences, and boosting ROI. With so many digital marketing channels to choose from, it sometimes feels easier to focus your efforts on one single strategy and brush aside other platforms.
The truth is, your audience is probably spread out across multiple channels and platforms. Maybe they scroll through Facebook to catch up with friends before hopping over to Reddit. They might browse Instagram for a while when they need a palate cleanser between checking emails.
The people you want to reach have integrated their online browsing. If you haven’t integrated your marketing efforts, you’ll have a hard time relating and communicating with them.
In this post, we’ll explain why you should integrate your content marketing blog and email marketing efforts. We’ll also provide some content marketing examples and tips so you can develop a customized strategy for your brand.
What makes an amazing content marketing blog?
Every brand requires a unique content strategy to reach their specific goals. Some companies want more exposure and brand recognition, some want to make their company appealing to investors, and still, others want to get right down to selling products.
Regardless of your industry and business, your content efforts should accomplish a few specific tasks:
Content marketing shows up in the right place, at the right time.
The “right place” and “right time” will vary depending on where your audience spends their time. It could also depend on trending topics.
If you’re a lawyer, for instance, and there’s a big news story circulating that relates to civil rights, you’d want to quickly publish a thought-leadership blog and get it out to your audience as soon as possible.
To hit that sweet spot of getting your content where you want it when you want it there, you’ll need a thorough understanding of your audience. Or, if you’re just getting started, your ideal future audience.
Ask yourself these questions:
Does your audience look for advice on Reddit? Does your spend most of their time reading about industry news on LinkedIn? How often does your audience check their email? Which questions are they typing into their Google search bar?
This will help ensure that the right people see your content and will fall in love with your brand.
Content marketing should answer questions your readers are searching for.
You already know that you want to create a content marketing blog offering relevant and valuable information that resonates with your target audience. But how?
Here’s the answer: You need to answer questions your readers are searching for.
As you conduct your keyword research, think about the thought process of your ideal audience. Are they asking a specific question? Trying to learn more about a general topic? Searching for a product to purchase?
Once you’ve got this figured out, you can better anticipate what kind of content your audience wants to read.
For some inspiration, try the following.
Type your focus keyword into Google. Look at the suggested searches and questions Google provides based on user activity. Staying on the first page, check out some of the top-ranking pieces. Do they contain outdated statistics? Are they missing anything important? Browse the comment sections and Reddit communities on different blog posts relating to the topic you want to write about. Collect questions users have and answer them in your blog posts.
These tips will put you in your readers’ shoes so you can think three steps ahead.
Content marketing helps propel your brand’s story and demonstrates authority.
What are some qualities customers in your industry look for in a brand? Imagine you’re creating an online dating profile for your company. What would it say?
Maybe trustworthiness or transparency form an integral part of your brand’s values. Perhaps customers in your industry want to deal with real humans when they communicate or look for help. Maybe they need an absolute expert who can anticipate their needs.
Content marketing can express your core values and solidify your brand as an authority in your field.
7 ways to integrate your content marketing with email marketing for maximum effect
Email is the perfect platform to start expanding your content marketing efforts. Working hand-in-hand, your content marketing and email campaigns can fuel each other, increase sharing, and expand your reach.
These tips are the perfect place to start in order to give your content marketing a boost.
1. Segment your email subscriber list.
Breaking up your subscriber list into multiple segments based on location, age, gender, behavior, and interests is an excellent first step in integrating your email and content marketing. You can also form more advanced segments, such as separating your customers by the type of content they like, either by providing them with a preference center or through advanced analytics.
Smart segments will help you provide personalized content for your audience. That way, you know your audience only receives the content they actually want.
According to research, segmented emails deliver 760% more revenue than traditional campaigns. By segmenting your list, you can provide readers with extremely relevant blog posts, products, and other content most likely to resonate with them.
2. Send email surveys about subscribers’ content preferences.
If you’re unsure about what your subscribers want, just reach out and ask them. Sending out a welcome email is a great way to break the ice and start off on a good foot with new subscribers.
Ask new subscribers what type of content they’d like to receive. Have them choose how often to receive your emails and you’ll see a definite drop in your unsubscribes. This will help your readers feel in control of the relationship and help you provide them with relevant content.
This welcome email from Refined immediately asks the subscriber for her preferences to provide her with relevant content:
Image Source: Really Good Emails
3. Encourage subscribers to share your content on social media.
Sending out your content to your engaged email subscribers is crucial for getting your blog in front of as many eyes as possible.
The more people who see your post, the more likely it will get shared on various social channels. And when your subscribers—people who are already dedicated fans of your brand—share with their friends, these friends are more likely to join your list and become dedicated fans as well.
Integrate your efforts further by including social share buttons inside your email campaigns. Consider even sending an email that directly asks people to share your content with their friends.
4. Maintain a consistent brand voice throughout all your content.
Wouldn’t it be confusing if you received an email from a health food company filled with witty and comedic copy but when you clicked over to their blog, the tone switched to professional and dry? Something wouldn’t feel right.
If you truly want your message to resonate with readers, you need to ensure your brand’s voice remains consistent across platforms and throughout everything you create. Even though you might need to switch up your exact words to fit the platform you’re on, overall, your tone should feel similar from email to email, post to post, regardless of where your audience is coming from.
This means that your blog, website landing pages, and email copy need to sound like the same person wrote them.
5. Build brand loyalty and trust.
According to 2012 research, 77% of people preferred email marketing over other permission-based advertising methods like Facebook. Although the study is old, user trust in Facebook and social media has drastically declined and continues to plummet today.
Email marketing produces such great results because your subscribers have voluntarily provided you with their email addresses. They want to hear from you and they can choose to stop hearing from you at any time.
By communicating with transparency and keeping your subscriber list in the loop, you’ll build brand loyalty and trust. Plus, by setting expectations and sticking to them, you show that you respect your customers’ privacy.
6. Bulk-up your subscriber list.
Your blog is prime real estate for promoting your email marketing. If readers like what they see on your blog because you’ve provided valuable content, they will feel compelled to hand over their email address. If you constantly provide them with high-value content, they’ll assume you’ll only send high-value content to their inbox as well.
In order to capitalize on your reader’s interest, be sure to use special widgets and plugins to seamlessly merge subscribing to your email list into your blog pages and posts.
With the right data analysis, you can also track exactly where your subscribers join your list. Was it your article about healthy dog food that sparked their interest or posts suggesting hikes through upstate New York? This information will help you realize what content performs the best and promotes engagement. You’ll then be able to offer even more of your most powerful content.
In this example, Thrive Market casually includes a widget to sign up for their newsletter directly in their main blog page.
Image Source: Thrive Market
7. A/B test different content topics.
Do you have a few super long-form pieces of cornerstone content? Maybe you just got a new product line you want to promote across various digital channels. If something performs well in an email with your most engaged followers, you can feel confident boosting the same content on Facebook and social media.
The average click-through rate for a Facebook ad is just 0.9% with an average cost-per-click of $1.72. While these figures are bleak, A/B testing content with your subscriber list first can help you get the most bang for your buck on social media.
Marketers today would be foolish to devote 100% of their time and effort to a single channel. Your audience has an integrated browsing strategy so you should also integrate your digital marketing strategy if you want to reach them.
Your content marketing blog posts and email campaigns make an excellent starting point. Merging your efforts here gives you the opportunity to develop a brand voice and create niche content before branching out to other channels.
Need help integrating your email campaigns and content strategy efforts? Check out some of our integration features and partners to see how Emma can help.
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