The rise of social media is one reason that content marketing has become more important today. "In the past, you may have created a piece of content and put it on your site or in an email newsletter. Now, you have all these social channels to feed," Fasser says. "The good news is you can take a single piece of content and make it work across multiple channels, especially social media networks. It all feeds back to your brand."
Google's recent Panda and Penguin algorithm changes have had people talking about the need for better content marketing, too.
For instance, the Panda algorithm updates, first rolled out in February 2011, have targeted sites with "thin" or otherwise low-quality content, says Clark. In Panda's wake, those practicing questionable SEO tactics-such as stuffing keywords into junky website content in hopes of ranking well-discovered that Google was penalizing their content by pushing it down in rankings.
Arnie Kuenn, president of Internet marketing company Vertical Measures, says some businesses lost 80 to 90% of their revenues after Panda and Penguin because their content marketing strategies focused on low-quality content. On the other hand, Google tends to give top rankings to content that is original (as opposed to duplicate), lives on sites with high domain authority attracts links from other sites, and is shared on Facebook, Twitter and other social media networks, among other factors, Fasser says.
Developing high-quality content for marketing purposes, then, has never been more important.
5 Good Content Marketing Examples
Coca-Cola, Whole Foods, McDonald's and P&G are among the big brands often receiving kudos for effective content marketing, Clark notes.
For example, McDonald's Canada rolled out a content marketing program called Our Food, Your Questions in which Canadians are invited to ask the fast-food retailer questions about its products. Participants pose such questions as "Do your warming trays contain BPA?" and "Why do you microwave so much of your food?"