What is a Content Marketing Campaign?
A content marketing campaign is an online strategy that creates exposure for you and your business through building natural and high-quality backlinks. A well-structured campaign will include a variety of media such as infographics, videos and visual imagery to be used on onsite blogs and on social media.
What happens in a content marketing campaign?
We’ve used the phrase a lot already, but what is a content marketing campaign? What happens in a successful one? Here, we go into the processes and aims of these campaigns, as well as offer up a couple of content marketing examples from two of our many successful campaigns.
1. Before your content marketing campaign begins, review what you’ve got
A content marketing team’s first step should be to review what’s going on with your existing website and marketing strategies. You might just be starting out, or you might have hit a wall and want to know how to scale your business beyond that wall. Either way, the aim of a content marketing review is to see what you’re doing well and what’s holding you back.
Before any content marketing campaign begins, you should also perform an in-depth review of your target customer, to ensure that everything you produce is laser-targeted to your chosen demographic.
Finally, don’t be afraid to look at what your competitors are doing. You’re not reinventing the wheel here. If they’re securing quality backlinks on websites that you haven’t even heard of, copy them! Once you know what your competitors are up to, tailor your strategy so you can whizz past and leave them in your dust.
2. Start your content marketing campaign by building backlinks
The goal of a content marketing campaign is to boost your online profile. The way to do this is by building backlinks from websites with high Domain Authority (DA) — places that Google thinks rather highly of. Using a combination of blogger outreach and content marketing outreach, you boost traffic and search engine optimisation (SEO) so that more people visit your website.
A large part of content marketing outreach consists of pitching and writing guest posts and sponsored content. Guest posts are articles that you write and get published on other websites. A good example is the Huffington Post. A writer who secures a guest post with a backlink can look forward to some delicious SEO juice, thanks to HuffPost’s high authority. It’s vital that you’ve got relevant posts to link back to, so make sure your onsite blog is in order, too (you can read about that below).
Sponsored content differs slightly, in that your company will pay a blogger or online magazine for a post on their website. These articles can be written by you (or a content marketing team), or you can get them written for you by the blogger or someone from the website (usually for a higher fee).
You might have seen examples of sponsored content before, such as BuzzFeed’s “15 Bands That Probably Wouldn’t Exist Without Led Zeppelin”, sponsored by Spotify. Content like this, which fits in with BuzzFeed’s style, is far more effective than a boring banner ad.
Blogger and influencer outreach means finding honest, entertaining bloggers with loyal readers. If your eCommerce business specialises in selling makeup, you’ll need to search the web for the best beauty bloggers and ask them if they’re interested in publishing a review, an infographic, or running a giveaway on their blog. Getting backlinks from these bloggers or influencers to your website will boost your SEO credibility, get you ranked higher in search results, but it also has the added bonus of introducing your brand to this blogger or influencer’s audience.
Your content marketing strategy doesn’t have to be completely web-based. Believe it or not, bloggers occasionally like to do real-life things! Promotional blogger events are awesome for generating social media buzz and building backlinks to your website. Hosting an event — such as a spa day, if you’re a cosmetics brand — also shows your target consumer that you rock at customer service.
Invite bloggers with a similar target audience to your own blogger event and your business will be shown off to hundreds, possibly thousands, of potential customers. We’ve got an in-depth guide to hosting your own blogger events, so check it out if you think your content marketing campaign could benefit.
3. Complement your kick-ass content marketing campaign with SEO-friendly blog posts
We recommend an onsite blog to all our clients. Not only is this a great outlet for showing off your expertise; it will also give you a boost in the search rankings. Content marketing outreach relies on having awesome onsite blog content to link back to when guest posting or producing sponsored content.
Onsite blogs have standalone benefits, too. Start by creating cornerstone content that will eventually lead to lots of smaller blog posts. For example, let’s say you own a bike shop. Your first blog post could be titled “The Definitive Guide to Cycling Clothing”. Later on, you could more write more focused posts about “The Best Winter Cycling Clothes” and “Off-the-Bike Fashion”.
Showing that you’re an expert in your field will build consumer trust. What’s more, including target keywords in your blog posts will fire you up the search engine rankings. The key, though, is consistency. Uploading 15 blogs is one go is no good, and sporadically uploading blogs every now and again is no good either.
You need to upload once a month, once a fortnight, once a week, twice a week; it doesn’t particularly matter. Obviously, more content is a good thing, but what’s more important is that content is uploaded regularly. Your audience needs to know when to expect a blog post, and you need to deliver on that promise.
It’s completely possible to rank well with just an onsite blog, and it’s also completely possible to rank well by just doing content marketing outreach. However, if you want to run a truly awesome content marketing campaign, be sure to use the killer combo of onsite blogging and outreach. A full content marketing campaign is much stronger than the sum of its parts.
Content marketing campaign examples from Exposure Ninja
Content marketing example #1: performance management software
One of the best content marketing examples we have started a few years ago. In 2015, we started working with a performance management software company. They provide software for HR teams in small and medium enterprises (SMEs). They had an effective website and a killer product, but no-one had heard of them.
Our first task as their content marketing agency of choice was to draft a list of websites and publications that HR folks can’t get enough of. We then started pitching guest posts to editors, offering to write about new HR trends on our client’s behalf. With a couple of publications under our belt, the wheels were in motion.
Our client’s business began to feature on more and more influential websites. Eventually, we worked our way up the ladder and secured an article — with a backlink — on Minutehack.com, a small business advice website. The post received over 400 social media shares and our client was suddenly in the HR spotlight.
Shortly afterwards, a journalist from the Guardian contacted our client, asking for a quote on the theme of business success. Our client went from being an unknown startup to being quoted in the country’s most authoritative online newspaper, all thanks to an effective campaign. That’s the sort of rewards you can reap from a content marketing campaign run well.
Content marketing example #2: storage equipment inspections and training
Storage equipment inspections and training is a niche industry. Some might even call it boring. However, just because something is niche, that doesn’t mean it can’t benefit from an awesome content marketing campaign. In fact, there’s an argument to be made that finding your niche is crucial to any successful campaign.
We started working with a storage equipment inspection business way back in 2015. Before they came to us, they didn’t even have a website. They were worse than ranking badly; they were not ranking at all.
Thanks to us, however, they are now the top result for 21 of their keywords. From absolutely nothing to the top result for 21 keywords — what kind of sorcery is this?!
As a matter of fact, there’s no sorcery. There are no tricks, no secrets, and no shortcuts. All we did was apply the same techniques we’ve just been talking about. We worked hard, and we worked hard for a long time.
First, we created an awesome SEO-friendly blog for them, which we update four times every month with new, SEO-friendly, genuinely informative content. We then combined that with content marketing outreach, building an average of two backlinks every month from a combination of guest posts, sponsored content, infographics, and even the occasional blogger. It really is that simple!
Your content marketing campaign might look different to our case study, depending on your market and your aims, but the same rules apply. Regularly publishing awesome content on your blog, while building backlinks to your site, is at the heart of any content marketing campaign run by a dedicated, experienced team.
Looking to start your very own content marketing campaign? Contact Exposure Ninja today for a FREE website and marketing review to get your campaign started!