As content marketing further solidifies itself as an effective promotional tool, brands across all industries are adopting content marketing strategies to help gain more traffic, more leads and more sales. Unfortunately, many companies understand the importance of publishing content but are still using their blog as an extension of their product pages – just another place to talk about themselves.
The key to driving content marketing success through blogging is by turning your blog into a learning center instead of using it as a depository for additional information about purchasing your products or services. Much of content marketing is about building trust with your audience and establishing yourself as a leader within the industry. In order to effectively reach your audience and build trust, you must break through the noise and help your audience by publishing high-quality educational and useful content.
Think about this common scenario: When you have a question or problem, what is the first thing you do? For many of us, we go online to a search engine and enter a query. In today’s world filled with instant results, we expect search engines to lead us to the answer in some way, shape or form. When your audience searches for help, you need to be the one to provide it, or else your competitors will.
When you help a potential customer solve a simple problem without asking for anything in return, you give them a reason to think of you the next time they have a similar issue – perhaps one they can’t fix on their own. As a result, turning your blog into a learning center can be more advantageous than publishing posts full of self-promotion.
To get started with turning your blog into a learning center, you must find out what your audience needs help with.
The first step in providing your audience with helpful information is finding out what it is that they actually want to know. What are the pain points of potential customers? There are many ways to find out:
When you’re researching a purchase decision and are wavering between two companies, what is the most useful piece of information you could have? For many people, that would be a candid comparison between the two companies up for consideration.
Though this type of content is incredibly useful, many businesses shy away from directly equating themselves to their competitors, afraid of drawing attention to what their product or service doesn’t do. But, if it truly is a product or service you don’t offer, that will become apparent to the visitor anyway – be it on other pages of your website or on a call with a salesperson.
With comparison content, you have an opportunity to be helpful and build trust through transparency. Don’t be afraid to compare yourself to your competitors and provide unbiased analysis on your blog; your audience will thank you for it.
With the above in mind, begin crafting quality content for your blog.
Though you may be thinking about your content and how you present it with a focus on educational material, many traditional blogging best practices still apply, including:
Though businesses continue to adopt content marketing through blogging, many utilize blog posts as another place to sell and self-promote. However, as people have embraced online research to fuel purchase decisions, businesses would be better off using their blog as a learning center to help educate and provide unbiased information to their audience.