Content continues to dominate current online marketing. It’s the most effective way to educate consumers on the benefits of your products and services. It positions you as an authority within your industry.
But many companies aren’t making the most of their content marketing efforts. They’re missing the most important element for long-term online success: strategy.
By implementing a comprehensive strategy that defines your content goals, you’ll make faster gains in building your brand and growing your customers.
The Content Problem
At this point, almost every business is putting some effort in content marketing. They’ve seen the success of others and have experienced their own significant growth as a result.
However, the approach that most businesses take lacks the focus required to increase engagement and conversion rates. They’ve yet to consider that each audience member has unique needs in relation to the purchase of their products and services.
As a result, their content isn’t targeted. It doesn’t address the user at the appropriate point in the sales cycle. This means that many of your content marketing efforts could be going to waste.
Who’s the Audience?
Understanding your audience is fundamental to successful marketing. But more important is knowing where to meet that audience within your sales cycle and with what type of content.
Prospective customers who are already considering making a purchase from you are very different from those who have a need you can fulfill, but don’t know you from any other of your competitors.
At an even broader level are those who aren’t actively searching for your product or service, but who are interested in some topic related to your industry.
You need to have content that address all of these prospects to get the best response.
Creating Strategic Content
The content marketing that is most prevalent is that which appeals to a broad audience. Someone in the market for a tablet, for example, might be interested in reviews, demos, or an overview on the benefits of using tablets.
This content is useful and relevant—qualities that any good content marketing should have. But then there’s content that’s more specific to people who are further along in the sales cycle—those who are about to reach for their wallet and buy from you.
For those people, content will be more specific to your business and brand. This could include case studies of people who have benefited from your product. It could include coverage of awards or recognition bestowed upon your company. This includes official industry recognition as well as customer testimonials.
Benefits of Strategic Content
Having some thought behind your content marketing increases your ROI. It starts by building awareness around your brand and the solutions it provides. This builds familiarity and trust among prospective customers.
Content that meets the needs of the audience has a higher level of “shareability”. Someone who benefits from a piece of content you’ve published will share it with others who have the same needs.
Your content will also attract a higher number of inbound links, which will generate higher rankings in the search engines. This is especially true with the broader content that’s at the initial stages of building interest in your offer.
Creating strategic content requires consideration of your audience. Knowing that each individual is at a different stage of your sales cycle gives you insight into how your content should be created and delivered.
You’ll be able to increase the effectiveness of your content marketing and grow your business faster.
Let us know how you’ve used content in your own business, and what considerations you made that improved your results.