A Content Marketing Overview

Content marketing is one of the newer kids on the (online) block. 

For years, copy got all the attention because it included the CTA (Call To Action) to generate leads and sales. 

And without a CTA, most of the content published was seen as lowly blog material or page fluff to most marketers and business owners. 

You can learn more about the great content vs. copy debate here if you're interested. But, it's old news as far as the internet is concerned.

History of Content Marketing

In short, it was a perfect storm in 2006. Social media was shiny and new, and pretty soon, everyone seemed to have a blog about their hobbies, lifestyle, or other interests. Social media gained some traction, and various free or low-cost blogging platforms became available shortly afterward. Not needing a website to publish your content created a blogging boom, with millions of new pages of content going live daily.

At some point, someone added a CTA to their content or blog pages, and people responded. While these CTAs were initially reserved for newsletter sign-ups or follow me on my social media page/group, the tactic caught on rather quickly, and by 2010 content marketing (online) became a big deal.

How big?

I did a couple of quick searches, and here are the results:

6,240,000 results for B2B copywriters

236,000,000 results for B2B content marketers

As you can see, many more professional writers use the content marketer label than those of us who still identify as B2B copywriters.

And, since both jobs have the same end goal: getting the visitor to respond to the CTA, what's the difference between the two terms?

None, really. 

Copywriting is still associated with the words on the sales or lead-gen pages (this is a holdover mentality from the days of direct response mail materials). And content now refers to everything else on the website. 

So, in theory, that should mean a content marketer can monetize every section of a website, while the copywriter is typically limited to a few select pages.

Truth Bomb: The same pre-suasive and persuasive writing that gets the click on the sales page can also get the click on your other web pages of relative and supporting content.

The only exception is perhaps video, where the visitor hears the words instead of reading them. But most videos utilize a script or an outline to keep the dialog moving, and someone has to sit down and write it all out before the cameras roll.

Content marketing or copywriting?

Since both perform essentially the same services, the choice is entirely up to you.

But instead of focusing on which label the writer chooses to use, you should focus your attention on their completed projects. You can learn a lot about their voice, tone, and writing style by looking over a few of their previous projects.

And, if you're looking to get a white paper written, and the writer has only written cold emails, you might want to keep looking for a better-suited candidate.

Next, you'll want to check out their client list because familiarity with your industry, products, or business model should be a significant factor when considering a copywriter or content marketer. 

For example, I write for the construction industry because I have 40 years of boots-on-the-ground construction experience as a commercial carpenter and contractor. 

So, if you need an article on building a deck or managing a tenant improvement project, I can start organizing my thoughts and create an outline within minutes.

But I would need a substantial amount of additional research and writing time if you asked me to write about the latest video game or cryptocurrency investing strategies.

When hiring a copywriter or content marketer, focus less on their job title and more on their industry, project experience, and previous client comments and reviews. 

Should you have any questions about copywriting or content marketing or how my services can improve your website ranking, traffic, or sales, send me an email and ask.

Talk to you soon,

Curtis Dennis

Your Freelance Construction Copywriter