The new rules of effective marketing now requires that content is part of the strategy conversation in almost every business.
The word content itself has a lot of hoopla around it today, making it difficult for many small businesses and organizations to think and approach it with the clarity needed and discover the role it plays in the customer life cycle.
On a strategic level, content must mean more than a blog post, status update or tweet. You must think about your content achieving a strategic business goal or objective. Building an asset to serve your small business and organization over time.
The Future of Marketing (with Content and Service)
The future of marketing is about guiding a journey that the customer wants to take. Customers need guidance and an experience that allows them to behave like they want to behave.
If you aren’t creating content that shows customers how to get more out of what they just bought or how to do something, you’re missing out on a big opportunity to provide customer service in a format and way that customers increasingly want.
The New Rules of Content, Marketing and Service
There are lots of ways to attract prospects to your business, but the true measure of marketing success is always retention. When it comes to retaining your customers, one of the most effective marketing tools is what is I commonly refer to as customer content.
Customer content educates at a higher level, builds on trust and leads to customer loyalty, which leads to customer recommendations, which means more customers and is the best way to employ content in a strategic manner.
Suppose you own a company that offers HVAC services you may want to offer customer content that tells your customers how to troubleshoot before calling a service representative or how to lower utility cost or what key information to provide when a HVAC representative is present.
Providing this information could save the customer money (and you) on a service call; and positions your business, as an expert. It also demonstrates that your business cares about its customer experience, not just the monetary transaction.
Once you’ve got your customer content, consistent distribution is king. Of course, your website is the number-one place to host it. Include it as part of your customer service page. Share links to the content in your newsletter, on your social media profiles. I would even go to strategic partners with a similar target market and ask them to share this content with their customers and you’ll do the same.
Expand on your customer content by:
- Creating content to answer common problems or questions customers have with your service or product.
- Developing content that shares creative ideas for getting more advanced results from your service or product.
- Upsell additional products. If there’s a complementary add-on that increases the results your customers get, include it.
- As a bonus, customer content not only answers customer service questions, but also serves to drive traffic to your website and build your business’s reputation. Using keywords that ideal customers search for will help you be found, earning the attention of these prospects and also spread awareness of your business.
Done right, customer content allows your small business and organization to create content that achieve business goals, becomes an business asset, and positions you to keep existing customers and attracts new ones.