Really, how can content marketing drive sales?
Let us understand content marketing in a purposeful way.
Content marketing is when you nurture your customers so well that sales happen naturally.
When you do content marketing, you educate your customers and prospects, you provide them valuable information, you inspire them, you delight them, and you provide them true value free of cost. When people look for a product or service to buy, they have a problem or maybe a desire and they want to solve the problem or fulfill that desire by purchasing a product or service. People buy only when they trust and in order to build trust, you need to solve a small percentage of their problem free of cost and without any intention of selling your product or service.
For example, if you want to build an e-commerce website can you search on Google about it and landed on a website that provides this service. On that website, you also found many other resources and information like how to design your online store how to find suppliers, and marketing guides for your online store. You found these resources very helpful for starting your e-commerce store and this is how this website solved at least 20 to 30% of your problem free of cost and build trust. Now you are more inclined to buy e-commerce services from this company. Now I don’t think they need to advertise their products and services to you or do any salesy stuff to make sales. It is because you yourself want to buy their products and services.
That’s how this company leverages content marketing to make sales natural and that’s how content marketing drives sales. You cannot succeed in any online business without content marketing.
Suppose if they directly start advertising their products and services to you and telling the features and benefits all the time trying to make a sale then they wouldn’t be able to help you truly in your E-Commerce journey and you wouldn’t trust this company.
After knowing what is content marketing and why do content marketing let us understand how to do content marketing.
How to do Content Marketing?
The first step not only in content marketing or any other type of marketing, but even before product creation, is to understand your customers, prospects, and their problems so well that you make a product and market and marketing strategy that perfectly fits your customer or prospect.
Understanding your customers will start with knowing your customers. It means you should find in what age group your majority of customers are from, what’s their work, how do they spend their time, what are their goals, and most importantly what challenges are they facing.
Now when you know your customers, its time to go a little deeper and find how they are trying to solve their problems, what is that they may be looking for, what type of content they are consuming. All that is very important for making your content marketing strategy super powerful. It will help you make interesting stories about your products and services which will inspire your customers to take action.
The last thing you need to understand and find is how your customers and prospects make buying decisions, what’s the amount they are willing to pay to solve their problems, what do they expect of the product or service, and what questions they might have when purchasing.
These 3 aspects will help you understand your customer well which will enable you to form a great strategy and make super valuable content for your customers and prospects.
Are you providing the right products and services?
Are your products and services aligned with what your customers really want?
Just look at your products and services and ask yourself, are they really solving the problems of my customers or fulfilling their needs? How can I improve my products? (you will surely get the answer by yourself) How can I provide more value and to more number of people?
All these questions are answered automatically by yourself and when you ask yourself, and these lay the foundation of everything you will go when creating content, distributing it, and nurturing your leads.
Here comes content marketing in action.
Remember all your answers to those questions about the age, work, problems, and goals of your customer. Now you need to create compelling content so that your audience finds it likes it and makes the appropriate and takes the appropriate decision you want them to take.
By knowing the average age of your audience you can set the tone of your content in a way that your audience understands easily.
By knowing their occupation and other details you can put interesting stories and examples related to their occupation and they will engage more actively. The goals the desire and the problems of your customer will help you indicate the clear benefits your customer will get by purchasing your product or service.
There are four types of content
- Written Content: Blogs, Ebooks, Emails
- Audio Content: Podcasts
- Video Content: Youtube Videos, Webinars, Courses
- Image Content: Social Media Photos, infographics
Make appropriate content for your audience so that they are more likely to consume your content. You can find out where your audience spends their time by doing google keyword research, social media search, and searching about various blogs in your niche.
When it comes to actual content creation, your words are very important. Any type of content creation needs the understanding of copywriting to make it action-oriented. Therefore, focus on what you are saying to your customers and how you are saying it, to make them ready for further action or transaction.
Distribution of content: Heart of Content Marketing
Yes, the distribution of content is the heart of content marketing because even if you make so much valuable content, it will not bring any result if it does not reach the right people.
All the research you did on your customers like where do they spend their time, what are their interests and desires will help you to distribute your content in various channels, and in various ways so that your potential customer finds it, consume it, and takes the action.
This is the step when you start marketing your content and when your content gets attention then you start marketing your product and service through your content.
When you understand about your customers and prospects, you know where do they spend time and where can they find your content. If they are searching on google, then you should understand SEO and optimize your site for search engines, or if they are mostly on social media, then you should focus on engagement and also learn paid social ads.
Now, when people interact with your content, you can ask them for their name and some contact information like their email id or phone number. Your prospects will be willing to provide you their contact if they find your content helpful.
When you get your customer’s email id or phone number, you can contact them and you can send your content and information directly to them. When you send a sequence of emails with valuable content to your leads, it is called as lead nurturing.
People buy only when they trust. To trust you and your business, first, people need to know you. People will know you when they will find your content. They will develop a little trust when they enter your email list, because they find your content useful and authentic.
Now, in order to build a strong trust and desire in your leads to buy from you, you nurture them with more helpful content and help them to move a little further in their success journey.
Content after Sales
I am not talking about sales anymore. It is because, the motive of this article is to make sales natural. Sales will only become natural when you genuinely help people with your solutions and provide them so much value without any intention to sell.
Help your prospects achieve 20% of their goals with free content, information, and valuable resources that you can provide free of cost to them. All these things will build trust, and trust is the most scarce resource in this world.
So, if you have the trust of your customers, you don’t need any sales techniques, instead, people will automatically buy from you.
The purpose of content after sales is to make true relationships with your customers. Now, provide exceptional content to your customers to help them grow more and achieve more and they will buy your products and services again. At this point, the aim of your content should also be to make promoters out of your customers. Word of mouth marketing is the best marketing.
Running Advertisements is not a long term marketing strategy. Content creates value and that’s why most media companies will die eventually.
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