Small businesses and start-ups face an uphill battle when it comes to marketing. Consumers exercise such extreme brand loyalty, often out of habit, that they may overlook your unique market values and worth. In order to help reach and attract more individuals, follow these six content marketing tips:
Identify Your Audience
Clearly defining your target audience is an essential step in creating your content marketing strategies. Try to describe your ideal audience as clearly as possible, and then learn as much as possible about that age range or demographic. This will help you produce specific, not generic, content, which is much more powerful in generating and converting leads.
Humanize Your Approach
In all aspects of content marketing, be personal, relatable, and communicative. Show that there is a person behind the account by aiming to connect genuinely with readers and customers. Build your voice and include personality in each post, using a conversational tone if appropriate. However, do not sacrifice credibility by being overly casual if the situation or your company does not call for it. Be technical enough to attract your target audience, and create content using the same language your niche market speaks.
Take Advantage of Every Opportunity
This tip applies in many ways, including:
Carrying business cards and networking in person
Including a LinkedIn invitation in your email signature
Contributing to online discussion groups, forums, and message boards
Sharing promotions on a regular basis
Using direct links in posts to move viewers from an email or social media site directly to your website
Marketing is a 24/7 job, so keep your eyes open to avoid missing opportunities to share your products or services with others.
Focus on Customer Service
As you curate and publish content, focus on helping your customer. Not all marketing needs to be purely promotional, as focusing on networking and building relationships can go a long way. Balance a post about daily or weekly specials with an invitation to an upcoming event, or a link to a blog post about product repair and maintenance tips.
Perform a Self-Evaluation
After producing a commercial, sharing a blog post, or running a special sale, take a step back and evaluate your marketing strategy’s effectiveness. Did you increase sales, draw unique leads, increase website views, or generate a lot of online interactions? If your posts go ignored or no one mentions your commercial as the reason they called, you may want to redirect your marketing efforts. Consider working with a professional digital media agency to develop more effective methods of reaching customers.
Include Visual Content
Posts that include multimedia are more effective and appealing than text-only blurbs. Ideas for compelling visual content include:
Illustrations or diagrams
Slideshows (with or without music and animation)
Aim to tell a story with your words and a combination of media. In a single blog post, well-placed visual content can either make or break your click-through rate. At the same time, ensure your posts or profile is not visually overloaded.
Publish Quality Content
Quality content is the key to establishing your company as an expert in the field. Answer customer questions and provide in-depth information that is beneficial to the readers. Pay attention and respond to trending topics, or explore online forums to see what consumers are talking about. Be creative and expand upon these content ideas, in addition to the visual ideas mentioned above:
Blog posts and articles
Top 10 lists
White papers or ebooks
Tutorials, demos, or webinars
Email newsletters or RSS feeds
Once you have quality content, do not be afraid to repurpose it in various ways. This will help you get the most use out of it, rather than always having it disappear into the depths of your blog or social media feed. If you put together a presentation for a conference, for example, write a blog post summarizing your key points. Alternatively, take a long white paper and break it up into multiple posts or tweets, or expand upon frequently asked questions, one at a time. Aside from repurposing content, you can also link back to old posts if they are still relevant.
Above all, focusing on your customer’s needs and employing a strong content marketing strategy will help everything else fall into place, opening the doors for exponential growth and expansion.
About the author: Kendra is Director of Business Development at c-squared
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