Branding has changed drastically in the last generation. Customers are looking to make connections with the companies they patronize. They care about their social actions and environmental footprints. Smart advertisers have harnessed the power of content marketing to win over their audiences. By providing content that serves as both an ad that reinforces the company’s image and branding while providing a benefit to the audience who is interacting with it, businesses can build greater loyalty and goodwill. Here are 5 best practices advertising professionals should keep in mind.

Start by Focusing on the Big Picture

For starters, don’t get ahead of yourself. There is a time and place for laying out a buying and deployment schedule and identifying the channels where you will place your content marketing. It isn’t the beginning! Make sure your whole team is on the same page with regards to strategy. Hold brainstorming sessions where you answer open-ended questions like “what are our goals,” “who are we trying to reach,” and “what problems do our customers have that our product can solve?” Always work out the strategy before drilling down to the tactics.

Get Your Whole Staff Involved

Remember that great content marketing ideas can be very simple and can therefore come from anyone. Your employees are often among your best customers. They may have experiences with your product that could generate great content. You can solicit ideas for specific goals, or just constantly push that your door is open for people to share their thoughts.

Always be Ready: Content Marketing Opportunities are Everywhere!

Content Marketing opportunities often happen out of the office. They can occur in the field, at trade shows, or in a customer’s home. Make sure your team can easily get set up and capture great moments quickly.

Make Sure the Right People are Distributing Your Content in the Right Places

Just as your team needs to be in lock step about strategy, they need to be meticulous about tactics as well. Make sure your staff understands different digital channels, scheduling, and customization. If you outsource to a digital agency for content placement, always give them plenty of information and updates. And hold them accountable to produce results.

Close the Sales Loop

Finally, content only works as marketing if it drives sales. Be sure to include a strong call to action in your copy or design, like “click to learn more,” “buy now,” or drive them to your website or social media.

In digital, content is king, and content marketing can put your business at the top of the kingdom.