What You Need to Know About Content vs Email Marketing
There’s no denying that the typical business owner today is quite spoiled for choice when it comes to marketing. You’ve got the entire world of traditional marketing like TV and print ads alongside the ever-expanding realm of digital marketing.
But all of this means that choosing where to invest limited resources has only gotten more difficult. In particular, many business owners wonder whether and how to use content marketing and email marketing effectively. Fortunately, we’ve got decades of combined experience under our belts and with it, we’ve put together this handy guide with everything you need to know.
In short, it turns out that viewing it as content marketing vs email marketing might not be the best approach.
The Role of Content Marketing in a Strategy
The first and most important thing to understand about content marketing is that it’s a slow and steady process with benefits that gradually compound over time. In the long run, excellent content marketing can produce sustainable and high-quality results. The challenge is getting there.
For example, it generally takes around 6 months until you can begin to determine whether or not the content you’ve created is producing results. Compared to the rapid iterations we usually see in digital marketing, this pace can feel glacial.
But there’s a good reason 82% of marketers use content marketing. It’s a fantastic way to provide real value to existing and potential customers, educate them, and build your brand identity. It can also go far beyond basic blogging to include Youtube videos, podcasts, ebooks, whitepapers, and more.
Content marketing objectives
Ultimately, whether or not you choose to use content marketing should be based on your marketing objectives. Just be sure you focus on the actual final objective instead of a middle objective. For example, bringing traffic to your website is great, but why do you want that traffic?
So let’s run through some examples of marketing objectives that are well suited to a content marketing strategy:
- Generating leads by bringing in traffic and moving them along a marketing funnel with your content.
- Improve customer retention by educating them about your products and services.
- Build customer loyalty by developing your brand through storytelling.
These are just a few general examples of what content marketing can do, so don’t limit yourself!
Advantages and disadvantages of content marketing
- Once content is produced, it can continue producing value for years (especially if it’s updated).
- Techniques like content repurposing can create value through many channels from a single piece of content.
- Content marketing allows you to reach an audience without necessarily using ads.
- When well-integrated, content marketing can support other marketing channels.
- Long lead times between producing content and seeing results. Then it can be tricky to confidently attribute results to specific content.
- Must be combined with good technical SEO practices.
- You need good writers who understand how to produce the right kind of content for your audience.
The Role of Email Marketing in a Strategy
Email marketing is generally done alongside other marketing tactics like content marketing. This is because, in order for email marketing to work, you need a way to add subscribers to your email list and then you need content to share with them. So email marketing doesn’t really work by itself, but it can be a powerful add-on to other marketing activities.
This is mostly because email marketing is just not very resource-intensive. Whether your list is 100 or 100,000, the process of creating and testing emails for a campaign is the same. This is why, rather than starting with email marketing, often you should ask how it can supplement your existing marketing activities.
Email marketing objectives
Like with content marketing, it’s critical you avoid starting to send marketing emails just for their own sake. Poor-quality or unfocused emails like this can lead to people unsubscribing or even marking your emails as spam, doing long-term damage to your ability to effectively use email marketing. So you have to start with a clear objective, for example:
- Lay the groundwork for later email marketing. This may sound odd but you can start gathering emails for a marketing list long before you actually begin sending emails. This can ensure that by the time you invest the resources into creating those emails, your audience is large enough to justify the resources needed.
- Keeping yourself in clients’ minds. Email marketing can remind clients of your business long after they may have last interacted with it.
- Informing clients about news including sales, new products or services, etc.
- Test an idea. If you’re wondering whether a particular product, sales pitch, or other idea might resonate with your audience, email marketing can be a cheap and effective way to test a hypothesis.
Advantages and disadvantages of email marketing
- Running an email marketing campaign is generally very inexpensive.
- Email marketing is extremely scalable.
- It’s quite easy to gather precise analytics, run tests, and make improvements to get closer to your email marketing objectives.
- Email marketing can be scheduled ahead of time to, for example, run while you’re on vacation.
- Generally speaking, email marketing recipients have requested to be included, so you’re targeting a good group of prospective customers.
- Has to be combined with other marketing activities to general subscribers and content.
- You have to be careful not to get too many spam complaints or you can face problems getting your emails through to your list members.
So is email marketing worth it?
In most cases, especially if you’re already doing content marketing, the answer is yes. The low costs, flexibility, and scalability of email marketing make it something almost any digital marketing strategy should at least consider.
How to Unlock the Power of Email Marketing Through Content
Content and email marketing are ideal partners. The amount of extra work required to begin gathering email subscribers to share your content with as it’s published is minimal. However, doing so allows you to reliably expand the audience of the content you’re already creating.
Another benefit is the ways in which email marketing allows you to see how your content performs. As mentioned, it can take months to see whether a piece of content is going to succeed in bringing organic traffic. But email marketing can quickly enable you to see whether your audience is interested enough to click through and read your article.
Based on that quick feedback, you can make improvements to your content and gain insights into future topic ideas. In other words, email and content marketing can and should function as a virtuous circle! When this is done well, email marketing is more than worth the investment.
It All Starts with the Right Partner
The digital marketing space is only getting more competitive, so thriving in it requires the right experience and expertise. Fortunately, our team at Automagically has been running successful content and email marketing campaigns for years. Our clients have experienced 10x results from our Agile, transparent, and high-quality services. Get in touch to see what we can achieve for you.