Remember the last time you met someone who would only talk about things that didn’t interest you? It was almost as if they were marketing themselves instead of having a conversation. Can you recall how you may have tried to be polite and concentrate on what they said, but they didn’t hold your attention? How long were you able to listen to them before you “heard someone calling your name”? Probably not for any meaningful amount of time. The same is true for the marketing content. If your inbound marketing content, such as blogs or organic social media posts, don’t engage your audience, they will stop listening.
Most people think of writing as a purely creative process. But, great content marketing is only created through knowing and understanding accurate data about your audience. Data can be used to give you a clear idea of who your most engaged customers or ideal customer are and what kind of content they want. Data can help you build general buyer personas or ideal customer profiles that will help your content creation. Knowing about your customer is key. It isn’t surprising then that the use of buyer personas made marketing content 2-5 times more effective compared to companies that don’t use them. Are you unsure how to create an ideal client profile or buyer persona? We can help with that.
How can your marketing content captivate your audience before they tune you out?
First, you need to get your hands dirty and dig into your customer research. As you look through your customer data, ask questions like: Why do my customers buy from me? What results were they looking for that led them to my company? Can I create content that will help them get closer to these goals?
Questions like these will help you determine what your target audience wants to read and how you can provide real value. When you provide real value to your readers, you’ll build trust with them, and they’ll start to view you as the expert.
Use a voice in marketing materials that is clear, consistent, and resonates with your audience
After you’ve done the work to understand your audience, it’s time to decide how you will communicate with them. The right voice can be just as important as telling the right story. The key is to know who you are marketing to. For example, if you’re talking to a group of tech-savvy software developers, you can’t communicate with them the same way you would with software engineering students. These guys know their stuff. If you try to communicate with them as a teacher instead of a peer, you may lose your audience.
Apart from resonating with your audience, your voice needs to be clear and consistent. What does this mean? Readers should be able to easily distinguish your brand by how you communicate. Think of it this way…we all have that crazy uncle Bob who tells the same joke with the same inflection every time at family gatherings. Uncle Bob’s voice can easily be distinguished from any other relative because it is distinctive, predictable, and unique. Some great examples of companies with distinctive brand voices are VitaminWater and Ben & Jerry’s. Notice their use of language, grammar, and images that fit in with how they want their brand to be perceived. Having a unique brand voice that you incorporate into your marketing content gives your brand a personality and helps you avoid cookie-cutter writing your readers can find elsewhere.
Consistency is vital because it’s how people get to know and like your brand. Building brand loyalty is like developing a friendship. Friendship doesn’t happen overnight but rather over multiple interactions. Regular communication about things that you have in common, your values, and exciting topics only attracts you more to that person. It is no different from the marketing content you distribute to your ideal customers. As you regularly communicate with your customers in a brand voice you will grow your friendship or relationship with them.
In friendships as you continue to communicate, your relationship grows, and so does your trust and the value you place on their opinions. Usually, friends are more likely to trust and listen to your opinion than that of some stranger. When customers trust your brand voice they will be more likely to listen to you. Therein lies the power of communication — it helps you build trust and communicate in a way that contributes to your marketing’s success.
Is it enough for your audience to trust you? Or do they need more?
Tell your readers something valuable — it doesn’t have to be groundbreaking
Often we hold back from creating content because we feel like everything we say has to be groundbreaking. That’s not true. Marketing content doesn’t have to shake the world; it just has to be valuable.
Imagine your reader is working on a home improvement project. If you need a saw, couldn’t you benefit from a 2021 article on the best saws under $100? Or maybe you’re looking for articles on completing small home projects that include tools needed for the job. These examples aren’t groundbreaking, but for the home handyman, they are super valuable. These can also be great ways to use product positioning to your advantage.
The key may not be creating new marketing content but instead thinking about using what you already have in different ways. If you’ve already invested in a significant content library from your marketing efforts, how are you using those articles today? Are they just sitting on your blog as a static piece of content?
The same blog post that helps a reader build a new shelf for their garage can be used for an email newsletter, as a downloadable guide, or even as a customer service tool. When you treat your marketing content as dynamic instead of static, the value of your content investment skyrockets. This new perspective will help you justify new, exciting content initiatives and engage your audience like never before.
The worst thing you can do for marketing is stand still
You may worry that you don’t have enough research to communicate with your audience in the right way or that you don’t have the resources to do it consistently. Don’t let that stop you.
Set reasonable goals that help you get in the practice of creating valuable marketing content for your business and then use those resources like crazy. You might set the goal to write one article per month that you could post on your blog, email to customers, and promote on social media. Starting small will help you build momentum for your marketing program.
Start captivating your audience by understanding their needs, creating a brand voice they love, and sharing valuable insights consistently. You may not have the in-house capabilities to be the next HubSpot, but if you give readers what they want, you’ll engage your audience and bolster all your marketing efforts.
Interested in learning more?
Work with Online Growth Systems.
Work with The Content Reactor.
This blog post is brought to you by The Content Reactor with contributions from Online Growth Systems.