There are two basic types of content you can deliver to your customers -- promotional or educational. Although both types of content do have their advantages, educational tends to resonate better with the average consumer. After all, people want one thing when searching online: to become informed. It is through educational content that much information can be gathered about a product, including what it is, how it works, and the benefits it brings.
Before diving into the benefits of relevant content, let's clear one thing out of the way. Inbound marketing rarely works if quality content isn't being posted on a regular basis. Search engine results pages tend to look favorably on sites that make regular postings, thus increasing your brand awareness.
What is educational content?
Educational content is just as its name implies -- it educates the reader. The entire purpose of educational content is to explain a process, product, or service. Instead of bombarding consumers with a million reasons why they should buy a product, educational content delivers the reasoning behind the benefits. It explains a topic, digs deeper into the topic, and then digs even a bit further to show instead of tell why consumers need to become familiar with whatever it is that's being discussed.
Why is educational content better?
Traditional promotional content does exactly what it implies -- it simply promotes a product. It fails to connect with the reader and solve a problem. Instead, it usually just reverberates something the consumer already knows, serving no real purpose at all.
Educational content answers questions that consumers might have. For example, if you're operating an HVAC company, a blog posting stating different ways to safely inspect an air conditioning unit will likely get a lot of views. After all, inspecting the air conditioner before calling in a professional is most likely preferred by most homeowners. Not only does this information save them money, but it also proves that your company is interested in helping people rather than just taking their money.
Keyword stuffing is long gone
There's a major difference between promotional and educational content -- educational doesn't include keyword stuffing. Instead, the content is so informational and relevant that any keywords are naturally integrated. This is why many content managers no longer require their content writers to include keywords. They don't want writers focusing on keywords when the entire purpose of the content is to educate and attract prospects.
Relevant content gets shared
When a friend asks for your opinion on something, you don't simply state your opinion and walk away. Instead, you tell why you have that opinion. Friends ask for opinions because they value the thoughts of others. You must do the same with your customers throughout your content. Explain a certain topic and discuss answers to relevant questions. This is the content that consumers enjoy reading and sharing, and as more sharing takes place, your brand awareness will increase.