Content marketing has been on the rise in Australia in the last few years, and one research report notes that spending on content marketing in Australia is set to increase by 61%.

I’ve read a couple of good articles about this topic this week, and this great slideshow highlights some Australian companies doing it well (as well as gave me the stat cited above).

So what is it? It’s essentially all of the digital content that you put out there on your blog, your Slideshare, Twitter, Facebook, You Tube, Google +, your whitepapers, e-books, infographics, newsletters, magazines and so forth.

The point of it all of course, is to disseminate plenty of information about your products and services for potential and existing customers to find when they’re doing their online research to buy whatever it is that you are selling. (remember that stat about how much of the decision is made before they actually contact you? Those decisions are made from reading your content marketing).

What is important is that your content marketing strategy is well thought out – don’t be jumping on the bandwagon if you don’t know why you’re doing it, don’t know what you want to achieve out of it, and don’t know how you’re going to measure the success of it. Because if done badly, it’s going to turn prospects off.

This awesome article talks about the difference between content marketing and marketing content and it’s a wise distinction.

Content marketing is not about repurposing your old selling tools and pitches, it’s about story-telling, meeting buyer needs and illustrating how your products or service can satisfy that need (or want or demand).

It’s not about reciting the features and benefits you’ve come up with as your sales pitch, it’s about creating something of value that is going to help the person who has bothered to read what you’ve created.

For example, I get great benefit from reading the content that HubSpot put out. They’re always providing useful tips for marketers, templates and how-to guides for how to do things. As a result, they are top of my mind when I see a need for inbound marketing software and I don’t hesitate to recommend them as an option.

When it comes to your content marketing, plan it, know how you’ll measure its success and most of all be generous with your knowledge and expertise. By providing something of use you will reap the benefits when it comes time for that reader to purchase.

Got a question about content marketing for your business? Give me a shout.