Content possesses a God-like characteristic in its presence.
Whether we’re at home or work, in a car, flying in a plane, riding on a boat, or on our phone, tablet, or laptop, we live in a sea of communication.
Content is everywhere we turn, and it’s everywhere we look. And we cannot escape its reach unless we travel to a remote part of the world without access to the Internet, television, or radio.
We are bombarded daily with a slew of messages. The amount of information we swim through every minute is staggering. Every minute, Internet users:
- Listen to 40,000 hours on Spotify
- Upload 46,200 posts on Instagram
- View 4.1 million videos on YouTube
- Make 3.5 million search queries on Google
- Send 452,000 tweets on Twitter
- Download 342,000 apps
This amount of information presents a daunting task for small businesses, solopreneurs, and even large corporations. Breaking through this noise can feel like offering someone who just finished drinking from a fire hose a glass of water.
But here’s the great thing.
You can rise above the noise, cut through the clutter, and connect with your customers without having to take out a television ad during the Super Bowl, a billboard in Time Square, or conduct a multimillion-dollar marketing campaign.
You can build an audience of people “who will rely on your for information, advice, and help, and will seek out your expertise” with nothing more than a blog. Individuals, non-profit organizations, and businesses of every size have developed highly engaged audiences who place them in a position to launch a career, further a cause, or establish a profitable company.
But, to do this, you have first to understand how today’s media-rich environment has forever changed the way we obtain information and make purchasing decisions.
People’s insatiable appetite for content
Marketing has been flipped on its head.
The proliferation of information has taken the old marketing funnel, grabbed it by the neck, and turned it upside down.
Image via Marketo
Historically, individuals and organizations found customers. Today, customers will predominantly find you. They do this through online searches, polling their friends on social media, and browsing websites. People are online foraging for information. They’re hungry and in search for answers to their questions and solutions to their problems.
People no longer wait passively for someone to approach them with a solution. They search for answers online and read reviews on Yelp, Amazon, or a retailer’s website.
People are taking steps to educate themselves about you, your organization, and your product or service way before you even know one iota of information about them beyond the data provided by your analytics. And the amount of information they consume before making a purchasing decision is astronomical. The number of sources people usually consult before making a purchase averages 10.4, but will increase or decrease based upon the cost and complexity of what they’re looking into, and these numbers will continue to grow.
From reading content online, watching videos, or listening to podcasts, people are consuming a vast amount of information before making a purchasing decision. This goes for every product and service, too. Whether it’s books, clothes, or insurance, people are filtering through a ton of information before making a decision.
Why your marketing strategy must be built with content
After recognizing a specific need or want, consumers will generally seek out information to help them further understand their situation, answer their questions, and find solutions to his or her problems.
This is why you must build your marketing strategy with content. Publishing and promoting high-quality content is the best way you and your organization can adapt to today’s new buying process.
You can no longer rely exclusively on paid media to reach out to customers; you need to help customers find you. This small pivot in your digital marketing strategy will make a tremendous difference in connecting you with your target market.
Whether you’re an author, small business owner, or a large corporation striving to connect with consumers, then you must build your strategy on content that will not only help you project your message to people, but help people find your message.