We all want action, especially in the digital environment but that contradicts with the way trust is built. “Buy me” is differently perceived than: “can I help you?”. In the era whereby an advertiser (or communicating organization) has many alternatives for paid advertising due to the presence and easy accessibility of owned and earned media, content marketing or has become increasingly popular.
The advertiser or communicating organization provides content (not necessarily own production) to its target group with which certain needs of the target group are fulfilled. By being helped, the target group will more and more perceive the sender/producer of the content as a helper or adviser and will also notice that other people talk about it. Subsequently, the commercial phase will be perceived as a natural consequence of the helping/- guiding phase.
In the digital domain there are not many shelf places, actually only a few. Buying such a shelf place is very expensive. Paid advertising, TV, SEA, radio go beyond available budgets. But the so called share of voice may be really low. PR (including influencer marketing) and Content Marketing with the use of Social media (especially LinkedIn as to B2B) offer good ways for rather inexpensive awareness and traffic building.
Content production is a more fruitful and efficient exercise if combined with curation and aggregation of domain content with which the visitor will be engaged with the topics and will return after a satisfactory experience.