Behind every product or service, there is the potential for a successful content marketing strategy. There is no marketing without content, yet most companies expect to succeed at marketing without a solid content marketing strategy.
Content is what tells the story behind your brand. Content shows the value of your offerings. Content has an impact on your website, sales and marketing brochures, email messages and social channels to name just a few. As important as content is, it will be ineffective if you write it with a disregard for target market and purpose.
Understand Your Target Customer
To know your audience is to understand how to write for your audience. If you are going to write copy for your customer, you have to know your customer better than he knows himself. Your content must resonate with the customer. When prospects or customers read your website, the copy should answer customer questions. When they read your email messages, they should find your responses to their objections. The content you create is about your customer, their fears, goals and aspirations.
The best way to get into the mind of your customers is through questions. Before you start writing content, ask your customers the following questions:
#1 Who is the target audience?
I hope you don’t say, everyone. You must be precise. Focus in on your target market like a laser. It wouldn’t be sufficient to say that your target audience is Tech companies. It is more focused than “everyone”, but it lacks focus. Software companies is a more specific description than tech companies, and SaaS companies is even more precise. SaaS companies that offer help desk solutions is even more definite. Be specific about your target.
#2 What is the goal of the content?
Are you trying to introduce a new product or feature? Are you educating customers or communicating with prospects?
#3 What is the call to action?
The best content triggers response. Your content must include the desired call to action. Do you want people to subscribe to your email list? Do you want people to call you or to download a report? Don’t start writing content unless you know precisely what action the reader should take.
#4 What topic do you want to cover?
Without knowing what content you want to cover there will be a lack of focus in your writing.
#5 Which products or services are you promoting?
Your future customers are searching online for solutions to their problems. Make sure that your product offers solutions to the challenges your target market faces.
#6 What makes our product better?
You must show measurable differences. It is insufficient to say, “We have superior customer service.” But, you could say, “When you call us for help we will answer the phone in 30 seconds or less.”
# 7 What do you like about the current solution you are using?
It is likely that your customer is already using a competitor’s solution. There is a reason they use it. The competitor might have been in business longer. It is also possible that the competitor has a more effective marketing strategy. The bottom line is this; if a potential customer is currently using a competitor’s solution, it is your job to find out why.
#8 What do you dislike about the current solution you are using?
If you want people to switch to your solution, you have to know the shortcomings of the current solution. When you ask this question, you will be able to develop the language to persuade the customer to try your solution.
#9 What are the most important features?
Many companies miss this one. Before you start writing your marketing materials, you have to know what is important to your customers. If people tell you that they want a simplified user experience, your content must focus on the uncomplicated user interface. If your prospects tell you that they want faster performance, it is your job to explain the many ways your solution is faster than competing solutions.
Don’t start writing unless you know:
- Who you are targeting
- The goal of your content
- The Call to Action
- What topic you want to cover
- Which product or service you are promoting
- Ways your solution is superior to similar solutions
- Customer pain points