Digital Marketing vs Content Marketing
What comes to mind first when you think about which marketing strategy would work best for your business? Well, did you know that using content to build your business is just as important as using digital marketing strategies? But… do you really know the difference between content marketing and digital marketing? Both are often intermingled together and it can be difficult to differentiate between the two. Let’s dive into the key differences and help you establish how both can work together in your strategy to provide the best opportunities for you and your business.
What are the key differences between Digital Marketing and Content Marketing?
So, what are the differences between content marketing and digital marketing? Well boiled down, there isn’t a great difference between the two. They both strive to achieve the same things, increase traffic, qualify leads, generate sales and ultimately grow your business. It’s the processes and tactics used that really differentiate the two. Let’s take a look at the top-level definitions:
Digital marketing aims to leverage a variety of digital technologies and online marketing tactics like SEO, email marketing, running ads on social media and PPC. Encompassing all of the channels and platforms that a business could utilise to promote themselves in a crowded digital market and achieve goals. The term ‘digital marketing’ is so wide in fact that it covers other digital aspects such as web development despite being so different and independent – either way, they all co-exist under the same umbrella.
You might not think of content as ‘marketing’ but it can be. It gets people’s attention. Content marketing is defined as the technique of designing, creating and distributing valuable and consistent content tailored to an audience. There are commonly two sides to this, the production of the content and then the promotion. This content aligns with the challenges, needs and desires of the intended audiences or personas. Why? To engage visitors and promote conversions, it’s important to highlight here that a conversion is not defined by a sale, it’s when a prospect, lead or customer takes your desired action. The conversion in question could be signing up to your mailing list, registering interest for a product, or downloading a brochure.
Digital and Content Marketing, Stronger Together
You’re probably thinking that both digital and content marketing work collaboratively and you’re right, they do. Content marketing ultimately lives under the digital marketing umbrella. When it comes to mapping out your content marketing plan or strategy the decisions you make should be heavily influenced and supported by your digital marketing data.
You don’t have to decide between which one you are going to use in your marketing plans because it’s likely you are already using both. As we’ve established, content marketing is entwined into your digital marketing efforts. For example, when you create content like an insightful blog you can then use your social media channels to distribute and promote that content, adding in another route or doorway in which users can access your website and engage with your content. Integrating them will make your marketing strategy stronger, offering the best possible opportunity to achieve your objectives whatever they may be.
Combining the two into your marketing strategy can be quite complex but try not to think of your content marketing as a separate, stand-alone channel but a part of your overall strategy. If you want the best possible chance of success at this, you could consider hiring a digital marketing agency (like us) to the lay the foundation for you.
Types of Content Marketing
When it comes to your content strategy it can be difficult to decide which types are going to resonate with your audience and personas. You have to think about what types of content are relevant to your business and industry but also what will effectively promote your business and encourage the most engagement. The below is not a definitive list of content types, don’t be afraid to try out new things too, it’s always good to experiment.
Blogs – this comes in at number 1. Blogging is very important, and you should be writing and distributing industry-related posts on a regular basis. It can help increase your ranking in search, trust with customers and so much more.
Videos – Videos can engage an audience quickly and effectively. 54% of audiences want to see videos from brands and businesses they support. Which is far more than other types of content. You don’t need to have a glossy studio or a professional film crew to create an engaging video either, videos are a hugely versatile medium enabling you to portray and visualise your brand messaging effectively.
Case Studies – Case studies are hugely effective for leads who want to find out more about your business as well as learn about the success and satisfaction you bring to your customers/clients. These short reports help prospective buyers see how you bring value to your customers and heavily influence purchasing decisions.
User-Generated Content – Essentially what it says on the tin. UGC is a great content method that actively seeks the involvement and engagement of your audience. This content can also promote awareness amongst those who haven’t engaged with your business before, expanding your reach further.
Whitepapers – Commonly mistaken for eBooks or Guides. Whitepapers are densely packed with information and data, they don’t make for the ‘prettiest’ piece of content but they can be used to sway prospective buyers who are in the research phase of their buying journey.
Guides/eBooks – If you’re unfamiliar with how an eBook or Guide could come together, envision them as a long-form blog post. Condensing information, tips, and visual media into a digestible, commonly downloadable piece of content. Guides offer a great opportunity for you to provide real value for your customers.
Gated Content – Linking to the previous, guides are a great way to give something away for free, well close to. Consider ‘gating’ this content behind a pop-up or contact form in which you can prompt your visitors to enter their contact information in exchange for access to that content. It’s a great way to build up your contact database but make sure the exchange is fair.
Infographics – Infographics are an informative and fun way to present and share key bits of information/statistics with your visitors and followers. They are versatile and can be used on social posts, blog images and your website.
Influencers – Our online superstars can bring real value when paired up with the right business. Having appropriate influencers promote your content can attract an entirely new audience you weren’t previously able to reach. You can normally reach out to an influencer by contacting their representation or management team.
Types of Digital Marketing
SEO – Search Engine Optimisation is commonly a large part of any digital marketing strategy, ultimately because if you’re not coming up in search results, how can you expect users to find you. In short, SEO includes on-page optimisation like writing titles and meta descriptions, keyword research, writing alt tags for images and optimising H1 tags and much more.
SEM – Search Engine Marketing, commonly mistaken as the same as SEO. It’s one of the most effective ways to promote your products and services and grow your business in a crowded digital market place. Using paid advertisements that appear in search engine results pages, advertisers can bid on keywords in the hopes of securing an opportunity to appear alongside results for those particular queries.
PPC – Pay-per-click, a model of marketing online in which advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked. It’s essentially a way of buying more traffic for your website rather than earning those visits organically using SEO techniques. Both PPC and SEM are fundamentally about promotion via search engines, PPC is SEM or a vital part of it.
Social Media Marketing – With the continued growth of social media users it offers businesses an opportunity to reach a whole pool of potential customers. Dependant on your business there’s likely a channel that’s suited to you and your audience. Depending on your goals you can use campaigns and targeted ads to further promote reach, engagement or conversions.
Email Marketing – This direct form of marketing sends information, offers and blogs straight to your contact’s inbox. It’s a great way to reach out to your existing customers or to push those leads into the next phase of their buying journey. Throw some content in with your newsletters and bring traffic back into your website.
Viral Marketing – Similar to influencer marketing, its the practice of producing and distributing content that is shareworthy, like memes. The videos or images indirectly promote a product or service.
Inbound Marketing – To throw another spanner in the works. Inbound marketing essentially covers everything we just outlined, its both content marketing and digital marketing. The methodology utilizes content to grow your business by building meaningful, lasting relationships with your consumers, prospects and customers.
So we’ve established that content marketing and digital marketing don’t differ all that much, more like go hand-in-hand. For inspiration, we explored different tactics and looked at the many benefits they can bring to your business as well as ways in which you can implement these directly into your marketing strategies to help reach your marketing objectives.
How can we help?
From content to web design, advertising and everything in between, we provide end-to-end digital marketing solutions for businesses of all shapes and sizes. Guided by our core values, knowledge and expertise we can bring your business tangible results and help your business grow. Get in touch with us today to discuss some ideas and plans with our experts, alternatively, you can join our exclusive email community to receive the latest marketing insights, tools and templates delivered straight to your inbox.
Hiya! My name is Freya, I’m a Digital Marketing Apprentice at Bright Design. I’m currently working towards obtaining both, my Digital Marketing Qualification and valuable experience within the industry. When not at work my passion is teaching children how to swim and spending too much money in my local shopping centre!