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What Exactly is Content Marketing?

The definition of content marketing provided by the Content Marketing Institute is:

“Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”

While that is a straightforward description, the definition of content marketing can shift depending on the needs of your business. For example, Pushing Social simply describes content marketing as “Storytelling for Sales”. Content marketing expert and blogger Heidi Cohen, however, provides a more detailed explanation, stating:
“Content marketing provides prospects, customers and the public with useful information while shopping or after purchase, without shouting its promotional messages.”

Content marketing’s major attributes are:
1. Embodies an organization’s core brand elements
2. Uses a variety of media formats such as text, video, photographs, audio, presentations, ebooks, and infographics to tell your brand or company’s story
3. Can be read on a variety of devices including computers, tablets, smartphones, and others
4. Is distributed via owned, third-party, and social media platforms
5. Provides measurable results through the use of appropriate calls-to-action and promotional codes

No matter which definition you prefer, in its simplest form, content marketing is a way to attract and retain customers by providing them with something of value.

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