Yep, that’s LL Cool J.
That was the first thing that popped into my head when I thought of this post title. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, LL Cool J has a song called ‘Mama Said Knock You Out”, where he starts off singing “Don’t call it a comeback… I’ve been here for years.”
I won’t go into more lyrics here because they’re not super applicable, but I’ve noticed this trend since the beginning of the year.
More and more people are using the term blogging and talking about content marketing (again).
Maybe this is one of those instances where everything that’s old is new again?
Not that these terms are old… but the internet moves pretty fast (maybe internet years are kind of like dog years?).
Actually, I think it’s more that our space is maturing.
Let’s take direct response marketing in general.
There are elements that have stood the test of time (good copywriting is the first thing that comes to mind). Why is it that principles from say, 1950, still work in marketing today? Yes, the medium has changed, but the message and basic human psychology haven’t. People make purchases because they believe they will feel better for having made that purchase (ex: you buy a course because you think it will help you get better at ‘X’, which will help you increase sales, making more money makes you feel better).
So the fact that blogging and content marketing seem to finally be on more people’s radar is simply a result of one thing:
I know a lot of people that don’t enjoy writing or think that blogging isn’t really worth the effort. There are plenty of other types of content you can create, such as video, which is also ‘making a comeback’… (not that it went anywhere, but more and more people are accepting they need to include video in their marketing), but written content works.
It may not pay off immediately, but it will pay off.
Provided you promote the content you create, measure what worked, what didn’t, and get back at.
When I think back to when I started blogging I had a lot of preconceived ideas as to what people wanted, what I should write about, and how much I could promote it. I was horrible about promoting my content. I might post it to Facebook once, then go about my business. I was very fearful of being too promotional or too hypey.
The problem with not promoting your content is you get zero data.
You have no idea if what you’re doing is what people want from you. For the longest time, I would simply create something I felt like creating (which I still do, but I have a solid game plan for what I create and how it can take someone down the right path). The challenge with this is that I sort of got stuck in this “how to do this with WordPress” tutorial rut.
I also ended up creating an email list of freebie seekers (because I just kept creating free tutorials so when I went to sell something they were used to me giving everything away and didn’t want to buy).
The problem with this type of content was that there wasn’t a logical next step.
I didn’t have an end game in mind of once someone read my content and became a subscriber, what did I want them to do?
Not only was my email list comprised of freebie seekers, it was also all over the place in terms of my ‘target market’. I really didn’t have a clear picture on who I was talking to.
Enter Content Marketing
I’d love to tell you that I connected the dots with content marketing more quickly than I did my blogging strategy, but I tend to be a bit of a slow learner, what can I say.
It was when I launched my podcast that I really felt the power of consistent content marketing.
The podcast was published weekly (yes, I had a few periods of time when that didn’t happen, but life happens. I came back to it) and it required me to step outside of my comfort zone and build relationships. The beauty of podcasting is that your guests also share their podcast episode (ideally, not every guest promotes the episode in the way you hope they will, but it’s still amazing for growing your audience and creating new relationships).
Seeing the benefits of consistent publishing as well as finding out what my audience likes best made a huge difference in the type of content I created moving forward.
I’ve gotten a wee bit obsessed with content marketing because of the results I’ve received. It might seem like “everyone is creating content… how do I catch up now?”
Here’s the thing…
A friend of mine reminded me recently that there are literally, hundreds of thousands of people discovering WordPress every single day.
You can’t assume that because you know something that everyone else does too.
I have some cornerstone content that I should have put on the site a long time ago… (how to install and set up a WordPress site for example). As I’m transitioning my business (out of service work), I’ve had to step back and look at who I’m targeting and what would be most helpful.
At some point, I’ll probably create this content… but until then, I’ve found a GREAT resource for you…. check out how to start a blog here.