Are you developing relevant marketing content? In this hyperspeed, hyperconnected, hyperchanging environment, if you’re not practicing content marketing then you’re missing a great opportunity to connect with your customers, increase awareness of your product or service, and partake in high-quality prospecting. So where do you even begin?
Blog. A well-constructed blogging strategy does a number of things for your business. It provides information for your prospects and customers; it shows a strong base of knowledge; and it increases SEO and discoverability. When you blog on topics of importance to your marketplace, you’re providing great information and also showing you’re in-tune with their issues and concerns.
Write eStuff, and give it away. eStuff – ebooks, ebooklets, case studies, white papers, etc. — are informative investigations into matters of importance to your market. As with all content marketing, it’s essential to provide material from the vantage point of your market. If your content isn’t relevant then it isn’t important and you will quickly become noisy chatter. Rise above the din with relevancy. If you aren’t sure of what’s relevant, ask your marketplace!
Create informational videos. Are you good at speaking? Tap into your inner Tony Robbins and make a great information video packed with useful content. We now have the capability to make videos from our own offices using much of what comes standard on our computers. While it’s best to pay attention to the quality of the video – you’re branding your business here – it’s now acceptable to forego paid actors and professional videographers. Content rules. I’ve seen very effective videos of folks providing information in front of whiteboards, classroom style. Experiment a bit with what works for you, grab some takeaways from what others are doing, and have some fun with it.
Conduct webinars and events. Webinars and live events are perfect for conducted learning opportunities for your marketplace. A great benefit of webinars is not only the ability to touch a broad virtual audience with the live presentation, but by posting the recorded version you are building access to an ongoing library of excellent and relevant information.
Build targeted lists. The real power of content marketing is that you’re creating strong networks by providing access to great information…..all for the price of a name and email address. Your goal is to gain permission to continue the discussion and persist in your quest to provide top-quality, relevant content that showcases your knowledge and expertise. And you guessed why. When your prospect needs your product or service, you’ll be the renowned expert they rely upon to deliver the goods.
Ask Permission. The age of interruption marketing is all but over. There are so many outlets to self-serve information, education, entertainment, and so on that consumers no longer need to tolerate interruptions. Notice how when streaming a video that you can skip the ad (in 4, 3, 2, 1 seconds)? Well, we skip the ad, and for good reason. Interruption = I’m going to say something regardless of your desire to hear it = I don’t care about your time. Is that a good way to treat someone we’re trying to establish a relationship with? Not in the slightest.
One Final Note: If you’re like many organizations, you’re likely struggling with understanding the effectiveness of your content marketing program. If you set the expectation to be results rather than views, then you’re putting yourself in a good position to develop the ROI metrics that showcase your success. While the starting point of a content marketing program are views, likes, downloads, and other methods of engagement, it’s critical to sensibly — and relentlessly — build upon those and convert prospects to customers. That’s the whole point of content marketing, and it’s sometimes lost in the shuffle.
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