Google Books has a pretty neat tool, Ngram Viewer, that graphs the number of occurrences of a word or phrase in literature over a period of time. The program does not provide a complete portrayal because it relies on public domain sources printed between 1500 and 2008. It provides some fun, directional information, however. A user entering the phrase “content marketing,” for instance, quickly sees that the phrase barely registered in literature until the 1990s. So, why has this once obscure concept come to be so important to modern commercial real estate marketing?
Content Marketing is Substance Marketing
The notion of content marketing seems broad. Every newsletter, postcard, and info graphic contains content when you’re talking about marketing commercial real estate. Content is included in the white papers, offering memorandums and in other materials used to promote properties or other offerings. So, it seems this notion of content needs some refining. One of the lesser definitions of content is “substance,” and that seems to fit well with the utility of content marketing. If something has substance, it has an outward form and a precision. It also has value. So, it’s no surprise that the Content Marketing Institute, the leading global content marketing education, and training organization, defines the approach as:
“Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.”
Within that definition lies the secret to incorporating content into your marketing program. Good content takes work because not only must it look good, it must be valued, relevant and consistent. To make content valuable to your organization, it also must be used in conjunction with other marketing tools. Specifically, social media.
The One-Two Punch
You already know the statistics for search and social channels is compelling – more than 3 billion Google searches are performed every day, and more than 8,000 tweets are launched every second of every day. In fact, depending on which source you pay attention to, somewhere north of 75% of the global population uses social media platforms. What is evident from these statistics is that search engines and social media are ubiquitous in modern society. So, why not combine these two elements into your commercial real estate marketing?
After you’ve gone through the process of creating great content, meaning content which holds value for your audience, you need to promote it. Social media is the way that content moves across the World Wide Web to the users that are most interested. What’s unique about social media is the variety of channels that are available and which enables you to target your message to a specific audience. The reason for using the two together is to attract some of the users behind those 3 billion Google searches that occur every day. Content, whether it’s a blog like this one, an info graphic, brochure or something else makes your website and your company attractive to search engines. Referring to that content in social media ups the chances that you’ll be found.
Remember, creating valuable content and promoting it effectively through social media is a process. Create a plan and then stick to it. Once you establish a pace, try to keep up with it. Doing so will create expectations with your readers and increase the likelihood that they’ll look at the content you created. When used right, the combination of content with social media for commercial real estate firms can have a positive impact on your firm.