Making the Most of Content Marketing for Your Retail Brand

We recently had a discussion with a large retail brand that is looking to leverage content marketing to reach new prospective consumers.  Their specific inquiry:

As [we] begin to place more emphasis on adjacent interests (food, travel, music, etc.) for our target customer - how should we think about content in this context? How can we make our site a destination of this type of content and make it stickier and more relevant to our customers?

The team rallied and formalized our thoughts in the following stance:

As you know, many of the digital marketing channels available to us as retailers are product-driven. But through a thoughtful process, digital marketers can flip that on its side and lead with content.  The “thoughtful process” is comprised of a few pillars. 

Pillar #1: Solve the perceived pain points of your target demographic.  For example, if you’re a footwear brand, maybe one of your target demo’s has the pain point of wanting to DIY their own shoe designs but they don’t know where to start or are seeking inspiration.  Go Live with an underground hip-hop artist customizing a white pair of Jordans.  Then leverage that Live to create evergreen blog posts, social posts, YT videos, snippets for SnapChat, etc to continue to reach prospects and build traffic.  Doing so will serve the search engines and build your cookie pool for product retargeting down-stream, revenue growth during major sales events, and for email opt-ins

Pillar #2: Leverage micro influencers to build reach that matters.  Some of us are huge Peloton fans and one a fan-favorite instructor is @RobinNYC.  Adidas, Burning Man, and a few other brands do a fantastic job of leveraging her and her platforms to push their messages in a way that entertains me as a follower and stays true to her personal brand.  Those two brands probably wouldn’t reach us any other ways, or at least not in such a credible way.  Not that you’ll find many of us at Burning Man.  #introvertproblems

Pillar #3:  Go outside of the typical realms of product advertising (Google Shopping, Brand PPC, etc) and live in the spaces that are content driven like Pinterest, IG, blogs and even Snapchat, depending on your target demographic. 

What ways have you leveraged content marketing for a traditionally strong retail site? Let us know in the comments!