The Agricultural Cycle of Content Marketing
Wherever you look on a marketing blog these days, you’ll be bombarded with two little words: content marketing. But what exactly is content marketing?
By its simplest definition, content marketing refers to the process of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract and engage a relevant target audience. Of course the objective is to increase customer interaction in the long run but content marketing generally gives something back to the audience rather than aiming to take from them. In a nutshell, content shouldn’t be put together with the sole intention of selling; it should aim to help its audience or offer something of value.
Where does content marketing stem from?
The very concept of content marketing can be linked back to 1895 and to the humble roots of a little old farmer called John Deere. Deere is now celebrated as the father of content marketing after creating the famous farming magazine, The Furrow. He created The Furrow magazine as a resource for anyone in the farming an agricultural industry and its aim was to teach farmers to be more profitable. The intention of selling his products through the magazine was secondary.
Taking inspiration from John Deere’s success, we take a look at what the agricultural cycle can teach us about content marketing.
From little acorns grow mighty oak trees, so the first thing you need to do is ensure you’ve got the right type of seed to give you the big results that you want. This means ensuring that you have a clear business and strategy plan in place to achieve your goals. It's important that all key-decision makers within the business have a clear understanding of what the goals are and how your business' marketing agency or department will help you to nurture your little seed from the very beginning. Let’s face it, preparation is key so the more you care for your seed at this stage, the further it'll go in the long run.
Now that the seed has been planted, it's time to nurture it to ensure it grows into a healthy little seedling. The germination process is one of the most exciting elements of the cycle and is where you’ll truly give life to your precious seedling. This will be done throughout the copywriting phase where you’ll add that spark of creativity and personality to the seed of your imagination to bring your campaign to life. It's important to keep watering the seedling with creativity whilst keeping the conditions just right, as this will pay off in the long run.
Remember, slow and steady wins the race, so make sure you get the tone of voice just right. The best farmers know that it's about getting the best product possible out to the buyers. Likewise, rushing the job will simply leave you with a poor quality product that doesn't hold the interest of your customers.
Now that you’ve given your seedling its best chance at life, it’s time to take the next steps. After all of your hard work, you can now start to grow your one plant into many. Using social media, you can start to distribute your content to build an audience and readership. Unknowingly, it’ll be this audience that starts to pollinate your content. They’ll plant the seed for further ideas and you’ll start to see the results that you wanted.
Last but not least, you need to take care of your content and ensure it’s still getting the attention it deserves. After you’ve grown your audience and reach, it’s all too easy to forget about caring for your original seedling. It’s important that you continue to nurture your plants to ensure continuous and steady growth. Likewise, it’s important that you continue to show the same level of care for your initial content so it continues to reach a new audience and spreads as far as it can. Using white-hat SEO tactics such as ethical link-building, you will ensure a steady flow of traffic to your website which will continue to fuel the agricultural cycle of content marketing.
If you need help reaping the results that you want, get in touch today.
Content & Creative, Digital Marketing