Many business owners and marketers have the wrong impression about content marketing. They approach their strategies from a seller’s point of view; trying to convince people to trust the business by promoting aggressive content. In its essence, content marketing involves customer-focused techniques aimed at promoting a business by showing how it can help people solve their problems through certain products and/or services.
That can be done by launching unique and useful articles, blogs, videos, eBooks, whitepapers, newsletters, infographics, podcasts, social media posts, and other forms of content that add value in the online community. When people access high-quality content on a regular basis, they gain more trust in your company and the products you promote.
The main question for business owners and marketers without much experience in content marketing remains: how do you craft the perfect content that delights customers? We have some tips that will help you achieve the desired results.
1. Listen to your customers! Understand what they need!
Before you can produce high-quality content of any type, you need to realize which problems, questions, and interests your target audience has. How do you find out what your potential customers want? You listen to them!
When people want to buy products or services, they have multiple choices on the market. They are always looking for a trustworthy brand, but they also need to spend their money effectively, meaning they want to get more out of the investment! Since you want to offer content that proves your brand is the best choice, you need to get crucial information about the amount of money an average customer is willing to spend, the features and advantages they are looking for, their preferences in terms of color and design, and every other factor that helps you make the sale.
You can get such info on social media and online forums. Join relevant groups on Facebook and observe the discussions. Follow important Reddit threads related to your business and see what questions and problems your audience has. Then, you’ll only be left with two tasks: creating and distributing relevant content
2. Analyze the content marketing campaign of the competition
What products and services are competitive brands offering? What makes those options a good choice for your own target audience? How can you convince your customers that you’re making the best offer? An analysis of your competition is an important aspect of the overall content marketing campaign.
Your articles, blog posts, press releases, and all other types of content should make a difference through uniqueness and value. When you understand campaigns of competitive brands, you’ll be able to build a better one.
3. Offer recommendations and call the audience to action!
A reader spends quite some time with an article, and they are very interested in the things you have to say. What are they supposed to do after finishing an article? Are you going to live them hanging, with no other option except to bounce off the site? Of course not!
A content marketer should include a call to action or/and recommendations in every single promotional piece they publish.
Once a reader goes through a promotional post, you should recommend them to share it on social media, leave a comment sharing their own experience, read other articles at your website, or make a purchase.
As for the recommendations, you should offer some tips that will help them deal with certain challenges and problems they are facing. Provide a few links for further reading, and remind them that you’re always there when your readers need more advice.
4. Share experiences
Do you know what makes a certain piece of online content really believable? Real experience! Get an actual user of your products or services to share their story. Your content should expose the problems and issues they had before relying on your brand, and the way your offer helped them improve the quality of life.
You’ve certainly seen those articles that promote weight loss products. Although not all of them are based on actual experience from real users (the guys from this industry like lying and inflating), many people from all over the world recognize themselves in those stories and they decide to try the pills, teas, and other products.
You shouldn’t play the scam card, though. Remember: you want to convince the customers to make a purchase by offering real experience, but you also want them to be really happy with the product, so they will return to get some more and they will recommend your brand to their friends and the online community.
5. Make the content personal
When you address your readers directly, they get an impression that you’re talking to them. If you could observe someone reading the content you published, you would be happy to see them nodding or responding in any other positive manner. That’s what you need to achieve: a reaction.
There is only one way to get a positive reaction from the reader: talk to them as an individual. Use you, we, your, our, and similar target words that achieve such an effect. The reader will feel like you understand their problems, you’ve been through the same, and you know how to help. That’s what content marketing is all about: convincing the reader to make a purchase without the salesy tone written all over your content.
6. Be enthusiastic!
Regardless of the type of content you publish, the audience should feel your brand’s energy through it! If, for example, your target reader is struggling with depression, you want to convince them that everything is going to be okay as long as they find the strength to make an effort. You don’t want to bore them or depress them even more through lengthy, useless content with no point.
Write short, powerful sentences, which the reader will remember after leaving your website. You need to think like a consumer and talk in a way that your readers can understand. Share some knowledge, but make sure it’s not confusing and overly “academic”.
A content marketing piece should be very straightforward and written in a positive tone. Instead of explaining why your reader has problems and making everything their own fault, you tell them that many other people face the same situations, and there is a simple solution. When you raise their enthusiasm, they will be ready to take the action you suggest.
7. Launch your content through multiple channels
Many content marketers make the same mistake: they focus their energy solely on social media. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social communities are undeniably important for raising brand awareness, but they are not the only options you have.
Your target audience can be found on different channels, including websites, article directories, blogs, forums, etc. However, they may also read newspapers, watch TV, listen to radio shows, and enjoy reading magazines. You need to know where your audience is, and you need to use all those channels to distribute your content.
8. The visual impression has to be delightful!
From all those tips we offered above, we can get one conclusion: you need to please your audience with the content you launch through the marketing campaign. That means that you should help them solve problems and get enthusiastic about discovering solutions, but it also includes the visual impression your publications leave.
There are multiple formats you can use for your promotional content. In addition to text, you can also use infographics, webinars, videos, podcasts, commercials, social media communication, etc. Whatever your choice is, you have to make it visually stunning. If, for example, you’re inviting the visitors of your website to listen to a podcast, you need to pay great attention to the design of the page. Although the design has nothing to do with the quality and appeal of the audio material, it will play a great role because it will invite the visitor to check out what you have to offer.
Instead of sticking to a single content format that works for your audience, you can try to mix it up sometimes. Throw in some great infographics in the middle of the text, and add interactive images that take the user to resourceful website.
Customers Love Content! You Just Need to Get It Right
It doesn’t matter what target audience you’re focused on; everyone loves great content! This type of marketing is not necessarily expensive, but it’s certainly effective when you get your strategy right. These are the main tips that help you delight the customers with content marketing:
- Listen to the audience and understand what they need
- Analyze the competition and offer something better
- Include recommendations and calls to action
- Share experiences
- Make the content personal, enthusiastic, and visually appealing
- Distribute your content through multiple channels
See? It’s not that hard when you think about it. Start with small steps, and craft a content marketing plan that will drive your brand to success!