Let's get this straight right off the bat: I am not a finisher! That is, I am not responsible for closing the sale, that's the job of my close relative, the landing page. We're all one big family … the Content Marketing family.
So you see, Content Marketing includes more than me, it includes Landing Pages, Sales Copyright, and so much more.
There's this thing called the sales funnel where prospects begin their journey to become paying customers. We guide them down the funnel in a natural and logical way. Then, prospects make a purchase and become repeat customers.
Customers get what they want; you make a profit; everyone's happy.
What Do I Actually Do?
Glad you asked and, by the way, you're reading me.
I am just words on a page, and my first job is to make prospects aware of a problem that you solve. If you've used me properly, then you can ask me to help prospects evaluate your solution.
That's it; those are my only two jobs.
The thing about the Internet generation is that they have a lot of information readily available. While this can help them make an informed decision, too much data can lead to paralysis by analysis. This means customers become so bogged down in all the information that they don't make the purchase. It also means you don't make the sale. It's bad news all around!
What you need to do is make things easier for them, and you do that by guiding them from awareness to evaluation blog posts. Scroll to the end of me and you'll see an example of how I guide prospects to the next stage.
Where I Am Not Good
Many of you ignore the rest of my family, especially the landing pages and sales pages. Those two are great at making the final sale. But, if you do not employ them, then you are expecting me, the blog post, to make the sale.
That's just unfair.
Some of you even badmouth me and say content marketing doesn't work.
I provide you with a fantastic opportunity to inform and educate. When I am well written and filled with useful information, I can help you become more trustworthy. I can even help you be recognizable as an expert in your field. If used poorly, however, this golden chance goes by the wayside.
Remember, my job is not to sell. But, give me the proper tasks of awareness, then evaluation, and I'll make you happy. Be sure to take it a step at a time, as the customer journey is not a checklist, it is a sequence.
How to Make Me Great
First, you have to ensure I'm useful. The best strategy is to take a long, hard look at your industry and see if there are unanswered questions. Failing that, think of the most frequently answered queries regarding your niche and try to answer them in a clear and appealing way.
Making sure I am informative is only the first step, though. I'm at my best when I am personable and sound like a human wrote me, not a corporate robot. You can boost the entertainment factor by trying a different slant. Instead of just making me a typical text post, why not be creative and make me into a story, a cartoon, or even a satire or parody post?
You'll also find that I get the best out of readers when I am a little bit controversial. When writing me, don't be afraid to go against the grain with a prediction, a debate, or even a post where you use me to attack an idea.
If you're looking for more customer engagement, you can create me as a question, answer, challenge, or content post. This is where I really work hard on the evaluation stage. When you write me in one of these ways, you're inviting people to comment or query, and this kind of engagement helps boost your brand.
Remember, people will respond positively when you are generous with me, so fill me with the kind of information that isn't easily available elsewhere. Since we live in an age of immediacy, you have to ensure I am current because information becomes out of date very quickly in this era. This is especially the case if you want me to give people the latest technological news.
Naturally, I am written with intent, but take it a step at a time. Write me with the intent of leading the prospect to the next stage … that's it.
A Secret Few Know About Me
My relatives, the landing page and sales copyright pages, are great at making the final sale. They do this by converting a percentage of people that are looking for your solution. Sometimes, they don't even need me, as some prospects are already aware of the problem and are seeking a solution.
My relatives get all the attention.
I'm more quiet and subtle, but I have a roar that is far louder than the rest of my family. I allow you to make an offer to prospects that didn't even know they had the problem you solve.
That's right; I open up a very large potential customer base simply because prospects are willing to go for an awareness walk with me. Now you have a lot more prospects to make offers to.
I'm not bragging though … I'm subtle.
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