Still not sold on the benefits of content marketing for your startup or small business? You probably should be. It’s one of the primary ways that businesses are making sales.
According to the B2B Marketing Insider, “emotion beats promotion” any day.
Brands that connect with their buyers on an emotional level will see two times more impact than…marketers who are still trying to sell business or functional value.
This does not mean that customers want or need some kind of cheap emotional manipulation that pushes them into making a purchase. Customers neither want nor trust hype.
It does mean that you have to work on fostering a feeling of trust. This comes only by answering a customer’s questions and providing them with information that solves their problems. That takes content that is strategically suited to building that kind of a connection.
Not all content is created equal.
Quite a bit of it simply falls flat. Forbes reports that only 20% of content actually generates traffic or conversions for any given website. That means that most marketers need to do a better job of targeting customer needs. It also means that more marketers need to concern themselves with the marketing side of content marketing, actively working to get eyeballs on the content by pursuing an appropriate and focused content promotion strategy.
Be More Strategic With Marketing Efforts
Start by auditing your startup’s site page by page. It’s possible you’ll uncover obvious trends very quickly. For example, one might predict that more obvious, SEO-focused content from your earliest efforts are likely to underperform, whereas truly unique content, or content which really does an outstanding job at meeting a customer’s needs, will rise to the top every time. You can figure that much out by studying Google Analytics.
Another method would be to ask yourself some questions about each piece of content before crafting it. Ask:
- Who does this piece speak to? People at the early, middle, or late stages of their research? People who are attracted to a specific product or service? Existing customers?
- What need does the content address? What problem does it solve?
- What actionable insights will the content produce?
It’s probably safe to say that most content focuses on the late stage buyer while neglecting people in earlier phases. If you find that’s true for your site, try broadening your strategy to appeal to different personas. After all, building trust with an early-stage buyer helps you “lock in” that trust at the late stage.
Even if your content marketing strategy isn’t perfect yet, you can’t afford to scrap it or ignore it. Whether you do your own content marketing or work with a team, it’s simply a necessity in 2014.