In the world of marketing, there is perhaps no more frequently repeated sequence of words as the phrase “content is king.” Although often attributed to a 1996 Bill Gates essay published on Microsoft’s website, this idea has been floating around for quite some time. But it really became a cornerstone of modern marketing in the early 2010s, as brands realized that no one was paying attention to their traditional advertising efforts in an ever-crowded digital space.
Whereas advertising can be perceived as a blunt-force object by consumers, content marketing is something that, if done well, is actually appreciated by potential customers because it adds value to their lives.
For homebuilders, this can materialize in various forms — whether it’s a simple Facebook photo album of a model home that someone gets joy out of looking at or a blog post that helps ease some of the concerns of a first-time homebuyer. In general, the pieces of quality content that delight, inform or engage people in meaningful, less forceful ways all work together to make the hard-sell proposition much easier to swallow down the road.
In this sense and in the context of the information-overload age in which we currently live, perhaps, content is king for homebuilders. But we think there’s just a little bit more to it than that.
Content Is Only King When It’s Relevant
From a proactive perspective, data and, more importantly, its interpretation are essential in shaping your content marketing plans.
If time was no object, you could simply task your marketing team with developing endless amounts of content for every single plausible use case. But time is limited — as is money — and you need to be prudent.
The data you possess about who your potential customers are, what makes them tick and how you can reach them is invaluable because it allows you to focus your efforts where it matters. Without it, you’ll be forced to employ what we call a “spray-and-pray” strategy and just hope that something you develop sticks with someone out there.
How Do You Determine What “Good” Content Is?
In a more reactive sense, data is just as important in a content marketing strategy.
Although “content is king” is one of marketing’s favorite catchphrases, the ambiguity of its meaning and purpose often make it difficult for brands to discern exactly how to make content work for them.
You can have the best writers, designers and creative minds on your side, helping you develop blog posts, social media content or even videos, but just like any art form (and content marketing is an art), deciding what’s “good” content is ultimately subjective.
Regardless of how you may feel about your team’s ability to make eye-catching visuals or write compelling copy, the real determiner of quality content marketing is in the results, not the content itself. And without analytics and reporting data to show you what’s working and what’s not, you’ll be forced to go with your gut when measuring the performance of your content marketing strategy — which, as any marketing professional can tell you, is not an ideal place to be.
So, Is Content King for Homebuilders?
The simple truth is that, yes, you absolutely need to be developing great content in 2019. Content marketing is no longer a nice-to-have component of your overall marketing strategy — it’s a necessity.
With that said, great content is reliant on being able to understand what the data is telling you. You need to be able to translate countless data points to figure out who your audiences are, what their pain points are and how the things you develop can resonate with them. In that sense, data comprehension is key to taking your content marketing efforts from just trying to develop “good” content to developing effective content.
In short, content is just as vital for homebuilders as it is for anyone else. But if you fail to marry your content development with data-driven insight, you’ll have a much harder time crowning it as the one true king of your marketing strategy.