The Beginners Guide to Content Marketing

Originally Published: 26 March 2024
Last updated: 26 March 2024
Written by: Nick Jolliffe

Reading Time: 15.745 minutes

Categories: Content Marketing
The What, Why and How of Content Marketing

Begin your content marketing journey by crafting valuable content tailored to your target audience. Understand the significance of enhancing brand awareness and driving customer conversion through a well-defined strategy. Explore various types of content marketing such as blogs, social media, infographics, podcasts, and videos to effectively engage your audience. Learn how content marketing operates by attracting a wide audience, establishing trust, promoting interaction, and guiding leads through the buyer’s journey. Discover the advantages of cost-effectiveness, lead generation, increased conversion rates, consumer preference, and enhanced visibility. Take the initial step towards mastering content marketing and unleashing its full potential.

Key Takeaways

  • Understand the target audience and unique value proposition
  • Develop a thorough content marketing strategy
  • Utilise various content types like blogs, social media, and videos
  • Focus on creating valuable and engaging content
  • Drive brand awareness, customer conversion, and organic traffic

What is Content Marketing?

What is Content Marketing?

According to the Content Marketing Institute, the official definition of content marketing is:

‘A strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audienceand, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.’

Wow, that’s a bit of a mouthful! But the basic principle is pretty simple—useful content should be at the core of your marketing. So much so that in 2019, 76% of marketing professionals took a strategic approach to managing their content. And the top goals of any content marketing strategy are usually the same. The content needs to: 

  • Improve the customer experience
  • Generate and nurture business leads
  • Support the organisation’s goals and criteria for success

In other words, your business needs to be producing insightful educational content that communicates well, encourages readers to buy from you, and showcases your solutions in the best light. 

Content marketing involves creating and distributing valuable content like blog posts, articles, and videos to engage and attract audiences effectively. As a digital marketing strategy, it focuses on understanding your target audience, crafting compelling content, and measuring results to achieve specific goals.

By tailoring your content to resonate with your audience’s needs and interests, you can enhance brand awareness, drive customer conversion, and foster loyalty. This strategic approach allows businesses to reach a broader audience in a more all-encompassing and targeted manner compared to traditional marketing methods.

The core pillars of content marketing revolve around knowing your target audience intimately, identifying their challenges, communicating your unique value proposition, and including clear calls to action in your content. To succeed in content marketing, it’s essential to develop a thorough strategy that encompasses planning, optimisation, and result measurement stages.

Utilising tools like Google Analytics and SE Ranking can aid in tracking progress and analysing performance effectively.

Why is content marketing important?

Why is content marketing important?

Considering the proven benefits and impact of content marketing on audience engagement and business success, understanding why this digital strategy holds significant value is essential.

Content marketing is important because it offers numerous benefits for businesses. To begin with, it costs 62% less than traditional marketing methods while generating about 3 times as many leads. Additionally, 70% of consumers prefer learning about companies through articles rather than ads, highlighting the significance of providing valuable content. Furthermore, businesses that prioritise content marketing experience 6 times higher conversion rates than those who don’t, showcasing its effectiveness in driving sales. Moreover, content marketing plays a crucial role in increasing website traffic, as it drives more traffic to your website, thereby increasing its overall authority.

What are the types of Content Marketing?

What are the types of Content Marketing?

When considering types of content marketing, it’s essential to explore options like:

  • Blogs can boost your website’s visibility.
  • Social media platforms offer a vast audience reach.
  • Infographics and videos are visually engaging mediums that simplify complex information and drive conversions effectively.

1. Blogs

Within the domain of content marketing, blogs serve as a versatile tool for businesses to engage, educate, and attract their target audience, providing a platform to showcase expertise and drive website traffic. Blogs play an important role in enhancing SEO efforts, with companies that blog having considerably more indexed pages than those without.

By consistently producing high-quality, relevant content, businesses can connect with their audience, increase brand awareness, and drive conversions effectively. Using blogs not only establishes thought leadership but also helps in building credibility with the audience.

It’s essential to understand the power of blogs in content marketing to leverage their potential for enhancing brand visibility and engaging with customers in a meaningful way.

2. Social Media

To explore your content marketing reach beyond blogs, immerse yourself in the diverse landscape of social media platforms offering unique content opportunities. Social media content encompasses posts, stories, videos, and live streams tailored to engage your target audience. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and TikTok each present distinct chances to showcase your content.

Visual content such as images and infographics tends to excel on platforms like Pinterest and Instagram due to their visually oriented nature. Leveraging user-generated content on social media can greatly enhance brand credibility and trust among followers.

Using social media analytics tools is vital for tracking engagement, reach, and conversions, allowing for effective content optimisation strategies to be implemented.

3. Infographics

Infographics serve as visually engaging tools in content marketing, presenting information in a simplified and compelling format. These visual representations are one of the types of content marketing, along with blog posts, videos, podcasts, and social media posts.

Infographics are highly shareable and can boost engagement on social media platforms. They excel in conveying statistics, trends, and comparisons in a visually appealing manner, making complex data easy to grasp. Businesses leverage infographics to communicate key messages effectively and drive traffic to their websites.

Incorporating infographics into your content marketing strategy can enhance the visibility and impact of your brand by delivering information in an attractive and digestible way.

4. Podcasts

Exploring the diverse landscape of content marketing, podcasts emerge as dynamic audio assets that cater to various informational and entertainment needs.

Here are some key points about podcasts in the domain of content marketing:

  1. Convenient way for audiences to consume content on the go.
  2. Helps in building brand authority and engaging with a specific target audience.
  3. Significant growth in popularity, with over 10.5 million people in the U.K. listening to podcasts.
  4. Businesses can leverage podcasts as part of their content marketing strategy to effectively reach and connect with their audience.

Podcasts offer a valuable opportunity to connect with your audience through engaging audio content, enhance brand visibility, and establish authority within your industry.

5. Videos

What’re the various types of content marketing that involve video as a powerful engagement tool?

Video content is a key player in engaging audiences, with 91% of businesses using it as a marketing tool. Types of video content include explainer videos, product demos, tutorials, testimonials, and behind-the-scenes glimpses.

Videos generate more shares on social media, with a significant 1200% increase compared to text and images combined. Live video streaming is a rising trend, preferred by 80% of users over blog posts.

Incorporating video content can boost website traffic with 78% of websites gaining more traffic, making websites with videos more appealing to search engines.

Embrace the power of video as a dynamic marketing tool to captivate and connect with your audience effectively.

How does content marketing work?

How does content marketing work?

Content marketing works by strategically creating and sharing valuable content at different stages of the customer journey.

At the top of the funnel, content attracts a broad audience with informative and engaging material.

In the middle and bottom stages, content nurtures leads and converts them into loyal customers through more targeted and sales-focused content.

Top of the Funnel Content

At the forefront of content marketing lies the pivotal stage known as top of the funnel content, where the foundation for awareness and engagement with potential customers is established. Here are four key aspects to understand about top of the funnel content:

  1. Attracting a Broad Audience: Top of the funnel content focuses on drawing in a wide range of individuals by providing valuable information and addressing general interests or pain points.
  2. Engagement and Informing: It includes content like blog posts, infographics, and social media posts that aim to engage and inform rather than directly sell products or services.
  3. Building Trust: The primary goal is to build trust and credibility with the audience, establishing a positive relationship that can lead to further interactions.
  4. Encouraging Interaction: Effective top of the funnel content is designed to spark interest, nurturing leads and guiding them towards deeper stages in the buyer’s journey.

Middle of the Funnel Content

In content marketing, the middle of the funnel stage serves as an important juncture where leads who’ve displayed interest in your brand are nurtured towards making a purchase decision. This phase focuses on providing detailed information, like case studies and product demonstrations, to help leads evaluate their options.

By offering valuable content such as whitepapers and webinars, you can build trust and credibility, addressing specific concerns potential customers may have. These efforts aim to guide leads towards the decision stage, where they’re more likely to convert.

Bottom of the Funnel Content

To effectively guide potential customers towards making a purchase decision, focus on delivering targeted and persuasive content tailored to address their specific needs and challenges. When it comes to bottom of the funnel content in your content marketing strategies, remember these key points:

  1. Provide specific solutions to meet customer needs.
  2. Use highly targeted content to push towards a purchase decision.
  3. Examples include product demos, case studies, free trials, and customer testimonials.
  4. Essential for driving conversions and increasing sales revenue.

Why should you do content marketing?

Why should you do content marketing?

There are a whole host of reasons that content marketing is an essential tool in any business’s marketing toolkit, especially in the modern age. And perhaps one of the most important is that traditional marketing methods just aren’t as effective as they used to be. You’ve probably noticed it yourself—when was the last time you saw a TV ad that was more than a non-sequitur, a joke and a company logo? It’s an expensive thing for businesses to do, and the more they try to be funny, the more the audience just cringes away.

The story is the same, and maybe even worse in online marketing. Research has shown that 40% of internet users use an ad-blocker on at least some, if not all of their devices. And perhaps most damning of all, 84% of millennials (who are the largest group of consumers in the world at the moment) say they don’t like or trust traditional marketing.

This is where content marketing really comes into its own. The whole methodology behind content marketing is to start conversations and showcase a brand’s value in a practical way—rather than just stating the value and instructing customers to buy.

A traditional advertisement tells customers what a company does and how they do it. But content marketing shares knowledge and actionable insights that help customers understand why they should take action. So if you want to appeal to modern consumers, content marketing is the modern way to reach them.

Then you have some of the more measurable, more ‘traditional’ (but still very important) benefits to content marketing. These include:

  • You will have more on-site content, which gives your customers more reason to hang around on your site and listen to your message, and ultimately leads to higher conversion rates. The more a customer reads, the more likely they are to find the piece that ‘clicks’, and make that purchase.
  • Content marketing also helps get you much higher visibility in Google searches. Every blog you write, video you publish or case study you create is another thing Google can index you for, and another thing Google can show in search results. The more pages you have indexed, the more likely you are to appear in search results. And the more you appear, the more likely you are to attract your target customer.
  • Your website will gain a higher domain authority (one of the key measurements in SEO). Writing more, high-quality content increases the perceived expertise, authority, relevance and trust of your site. This leads to more inbound links, which improves domain authority. A higher domain authority is strongly linked to higher search rankings, so the more content you produce, the better your ranking will be.
  • Improved brand reputation. When people read your content, they are subconsciously building an impression of your brand. So if they find your content helpful, informative, funny and relatable, that’s a positive association they’re building, and over time they will grow to trust you. So even if they don’t buy right away, when the time comes for them to purchase, they have this positive image in their mind.
  • Content marketing is one of the most cost-effective ways to market your business. It only really costs time, and it offers something even better—compounding returns. One of the things we always say is that your first few months of content marketing might not yield much, but if you stick with it then you’ll see the growth start. Keep at it for a year or two, and you could easily see a return that’s double, triple or even quadruple your investment. 

How to get started with content marketing

How to get started with content marketing

When starting with content marketing, the key is to plan your content, cover relevant topics, create engaging material, promote it effectively, and track its performance to make necessary improvements.

By defining your target audience, conducting research, and utilising tools like Google Analytics and SE Ranking, you can optimise your content strategy for success.

Initial Content Planning

When initiating content marketing, begin by defining your target audience, their needs, and the goals you want to achieve with your content. To kickstart your content planning process, consider the following steps:

  1. Conduct thorough keyword research to understand what topics your audience is searching for online.
  2. Create a content calendar to organise your content ideas, schedule publication dates, and maintain a consistent flow of content.
  3. Develop a content strategy that aligns with your business objectives and brand voice for effective planning.
  4. Employ tools like Google Trends, SERanking, or BuzzSumo to gain valuable insights for optimising your content planning efforts.

Find Topics to Cover

To start your content marketing journey, begin by conducting keyword research to uncover popular topics in your niche using tools like SE Ranking or Ahrefs.

Immerse yourself in the world of content marketing by understanding your audience interests through social media listening tools to discover what they’re talking about.

Analyse competitors’ content to find gaps and opportunities for unique coverage that resonates with your target audience.

Stay updated with trending topics and industry news to create timely and engaging content that captures attention.

Employ content ideation tools like BuzzSumo to explore viral topics and trending content ideas that can drive engagement and visibility for your brand.

Create your content

If you’re new to content marketing, the first step is to clearly define your target audience’s demographics, interests, and pain points to tailor your content effectively. To get started with your content creation journey, follow these steps:

  1. Research popular keywords and trending topics in your industry to optimise your content for search engines.
  2. Develop a content calendar to plan and organise your content creation schedule for consistency and engagement.
  3. Employ various content formats like blog posts, videos, infographics, and podcasts to cater to different audience preferences.
  4. Monitor key performance indicators (KPIs) such as website traffic, engagement metrics, and conversion rates to measure the success of your content marketing efforts.

Promote your Content

To effectively kickstart your content promotion journey in content marketing, begin by leveraging social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn to enhance your reach and engage a broader audience. Share your content on these platforms to increase visibility.

Engage with industry influencers to boost credibility and reach. Additionally, consider implementing email marketing campaigns to directly promote your content to interested subscribers.

Explore paid advertising options on platforms like Google Ads or Facebook Ads to target specific audiences and drive traffic to your content. Monitor performance metrics like click-through rates, conversion rates, and engagement levels to fine-tune your content promotion strategies for best results.

These steps will help you effectively promote your content and expand your online presence.

Track how your content ranks and improve!

Begin by using tools like SE Ranking to track keyword rankings and monitor SEO performance, ensuring you can effectively measure and improve your content’s visibility and impact in the digital landscape. To enhance your content marketing efforts, consider the following steps:

  1. Track backlinks and social media engagement to gauge content effectiveness.
  2. Analyse Google Analytics data to understand user behaviour and optimise your content strategy.
  3. Implement on-page SEO techniques to improve content visibility and search engine rankings.
  4. Regularly review and update content based on performance metrics for continuous improvement.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are the 5 C’s of Content Marketing?

To excel in content marketing, remember the 5 C’s: context for audience needs, clarity for a clear message, consistency in delivery, connection through valuable content, and creativity for engagement. Stay focused on these pillars for success.

What Are the 7 Steps of Content Marketing?

To excel in content marketing, identify your audience, develop a strategy, create valuable content, optimise it for search engines, and measure performance. These steps guarantee reaching and engaging your audience effectively to achieve your marketing goals.

What Are the 3 C’s of Content Marketing?

To excel in content marketing, remember the 3 C’s: Consistency, Clarity, Call to Action. Consistently engage with clear and valuable content, prompting action. Implementing these principles will enhance your content marketing strategy’s effectiveness and impact.


To sum up, mastering content marketing is essential for engaging your audience and achieving your marketing goals. By understanding your target audience, creating compelling content, and measuring success, you can drive results effectively.

Remember to leverage tools like Google Analytics and SE Ranking to track your progress and make informed decisions. Start your content marketing journey today and watch your brand thrive in the digital landscape.

At Lion Spirit Media, content marketing really is at the heart of everything we do. Not only does it provide so many important benefits for your business online, but we believe it’s the best way to communicate with your customers in your own, unique voice. But you have a business to run, so it’s our job to help you find that voice, and share it with the world! 

Our content marketing strategy and support helps you create content that Resonates with people, gives you Opportunities to reach them, helps you Achieve great things and provides you with Resources to accelerate your success. In other words, it makes your business ROAR!

If you’d like to find out more about our content marketing services, you can read this case study from one of our happy customers, or get in touch to book your free, no-strings-attached consultation with one of our content experts. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Contact Us Today

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