If you run a small business, you may want to try content marketing, which lets you build an online audience and establish yourself as an expert. 

But if you’ve never done content marketing before, where might you start? Don’t worry; we can help.  

This guide covers how to use content marketing for small business, including:

  • Creating your strategy
  • Reaching your audience 
  • Finding relevant topics 
  • Writing strong content 
  • Creating a schedule 
  • Measuring the results 

Why is content marketing important?

Content marketing is when a business regularly posts various forms of content to promote their business. These publications may not directly advertise your products or services, but they are relevant to your market. 

The content you publish for your business might include: 

  • Blog post and articles 
  • Video content 
  • Social media posts 
  • Research
  • Ebooks 
  • Podcasts

Today, 82% of marketers actively use this approach. It helps people find your business online when they search similar topics. 

With an effective strategy, you can increase your audience, grow your brand, and earn sales opportunities. Plus, it helps you show your knowledge within the industry. 

How can you use content marketing for a small business? 

Content marketing is an effective way to grow your business’ digital presence. Let’s go over the essential steps to incorporating it into your business. 

Creating your strategy  

For effective content marketing, you’ll need a clear plan. Here are a few things to consider in your strategy: 

  • How much content you’ll post each week or month – aiming to publish ten pieces of content a month might be a manageable goal to begin with. 
  • What content you plan to publish – you can incorporate a variety of types to increase impact, but try focusing on one or two main ones, such as articles and videos.  
  • Where you’ll publish your content – you could upload content or add a blog page to your business website. Alternatively, you can post videos to YouTube where you can earn subscribers. 
  • Your overarching objectives – you might hope to earn a certain number of leads or multiply your website traffic. Make sure these goals are realistic and measurable.

Reaching your target audience 

Tailoring your content marketing to your target audience can make it more effective. Consider researching your audience’s interests, needs, and pain points, so the content benefits them

The better you know your target audience, the more efficiently your content will find them. 

Say your audience often listens to podcasts. You could try your hand at producing one. Plus, examine which social media platforms this audience uses most so you can develop content in these spaces. 

Finding relevant topics 

It’s important that your content fits within your market. Try to choose topics that answer common questions and offer valuable solutions

For example, if you run a bakery, you might publish your best recipes and create videos where you share your best baking tips. 

To come up with great article ideas, think about doing a strategy brainstorm where you write a list of any topic that comes to mind. Also, look to similar business blogs to see what content they publish.

Creating strong content 

Once you’ve got a plan, it’s time to make great content for people to find. Here are some essential tips for making content that performs well. 

Use SEO

Search engine optimisation (SEO) helps you rank on the first page of similar search engine results, increasing organic traffic. Effective SEO lets you appear as an option when people look for your topics. 

Here are the key parts of SEO: 

  • Keywords – find common words and phrases that people search for and incorporate them into your content. Use tools like Ubersuggest.
  • Linking – link your content to your other articles to show Google how they connect. 
  • Formatting – use headers like H1, H2, and H3 to organise your content and help the search engine understand it.
  • Quality – produce original and high-quality content if you want Google to rank you. 

You can also incorporate SEO into other uploads, like social posts, and research effective hashtags to reach more people. 

Tip! When you choose target keywords as a small business, pick ones that aren’t as competitive (that larger companies don’t target). You might aim for a search volume around 20-70. 

To learn more, check out the beginner’s guide to small business SEO

Make the content engaging

When you make content for your business, it needs to offer valuable information that’s easy to read. 

To create consistently engaging content, try creating tone of voice guidelines for your business. This can help you define the style that best communicates with your audience. 

When you design visual content, use tools like Canva or Vimeo to make it look professional and eye-catching.

Check for grammar and spelling

Always look over your written content before posting it anywhere to maintain quality. Doing so helps you catch spelling and grammatical errors before they meet public eyes

Even a short caption on an Instagram post should have correct grammar and spelling. You can use a tool like Grammarly to check it across several online platforms.

Add a CTA 

Your content might not be a direct advertisement for your business, but it’s smart to remind the reader about what you offer. 

A Call to Action (CTA) can appear within your content, linking the content back to your business, and encouraging people to do something. You might suggest people click on your website, try your product, or subscribe to an email list. 

Creating a schedule 

A content calendar can help you stay on top of your content posting goals. You can organise your topic ideas, set posting times, and break up the creation process, including: 

  • Planning
  • Researching 
  • Creating (writing, filming, recording or designing)
  • Posting 
  • Promoting

It’s easier to manage and organise this with a project management tool. Tools like monday or Later allow you to organise tasks and schedule posts. 

Measuring results 

Once you create and post your marketing content, track its success. Google Analytics is an excellent tool for tracking website traffic and click-throughs to measure your progress. 

How can you improve your marketing strategy with content? 

Now that you know how to use content marketing for small businesses, you can follow these steps to build an effective strategy. Just remember to: 

  • Establish clear goals 
  • Target a specific audience 
  • Choose topics relevant to your business
  • Create content that people want to see
  • Build a content calendar  
  • Track your content’s results  

Content marketing is a great long-term strategy for growing your business. But you may fear you don’t have enough time for it. If so, check out should I outsource the marketing of my small business?

Simplify your business finances with a clever app

As you draw in new customers with your content marketing, it’s important to stay on top of your finances. 

Countingup is the business current account and accounting software in one app. It automates time-consuming bookkeeping admin for thousands of self-employed people across the UK. 
Start your three-month free trial today.