We’re in the first week of 2018, and there is no better time to start anew with fresh content for your business!
Inbound, content marketing is the core of our beliefs here at Nimble, and will continue to be for a long time. The basics of a successful inbound marketing strategy involve pushing out loads of content. Not just any content, but great content. Great content strategies bring web traffic, leads and loyal customers for that revenue spike you’re anticipating in 2018!
(If you’ve been here awhile, you’ve probably heard this a dozen times. If you’re new, well, now you know. Also, welcome!)
But what is great content? What defines it?
To put it simply, great content is content that educates. Great content answers your audiences’ questions. These questions include those that you get all the time, those that are common in the business industry and even those that they haven’t even thought of asking! (You’d have to think ahead for that last bit) It’s content that educates your audience about your product or service, helps them understand the industry better and empowers them to make better choices in their buying decisions.
Educating your audience puts you in a place of credibility and trust. It’s only natural for prospects to have doubts; our task is to be a credible source of information that they can keep going back to for answers. It is likely that your audience has been looking for answers online, but have not found any. If you are the first or the very few that addresses these doubts, you have the grand upper hand of gaining their trust, and eventually, the sale.
How does this lead to sales for your business?
It has a lot to do with the shift in buying patterns that have happened monumentally in the past decade. Did you know that 70% of a purchase decision is made even before the customer speaks to the business? It’s highly likely that your audience has decided on whether they will purchase your product or engage your service before they even speak to you.
This then comes with the tricky bit of having to influence your prospects before that decision is made. How do you that?
You do it through content marketing – putting out content that makes you a trusted voice in the industry and attracting people to your business. You can only be a trusted voice when you educate and keep your audience informed. Hence, again, great content is content that educates.
Why do so many businesses shy away from this?
There are many reasons but they generally boil down to one notion: that sharing too much information would put you at a disadvantage.
Let’s think about that together. Often we make decisions with, what we hope, is the business’s interests at heart, but who is the business serving? Producing great content requires you to understand your audience and the way they think, feel, say and desire. Your audience will always be overwhelmed by choices. The buying process becomes frustrating when they are paralyzed by the options they have and they struggle to decide which business will serve them the best. The only way to rise above the crowded ecosystem of competing businesses is to be a content powerhouse.
Removing seeds of doubt from a prospects’ decision-making process will not be damaging to your brand reputation. On the contrary, it has the potential to bring your small business quality leads. When you are clear about what your business offers and build trust through transparency, you get ideal leads that fully support your service or product and are aligned with your values.
Sure, you’re putting yourself up to scrutiny, but that only gives you the chance to answer more questions and generate more content. Take it the right way, and it could lead to an incredible brand reputation! Far too many businesses resort to dodging questions, with the simple mindset of, “we’ll discuss that when we meet.” This would no longer work, not when there lies a 70% chance that your potential prospect is too doubtful to even drop that first inquiry. In other words, building your sales strategy around customer ignorance is no longer viable.
What are the types of content that I can put out?
Here’s a simple list to aid your first brainstorming session:
- Pricings & costs
- Reviews & recommendations
- Addressing problems
Of course, recommendations of content differ for product and service businesses. With that in mind, I have decided to create new, downloadable cheatsheets on the Nimble website that suggests the best content to go out for your specific business.
It’s time to sit down and really think about what your ideal customers what to know from you. Set some time aside to analyze what past content has worked, and identify opportunities hidden within trends. Happy brainstorming and good luck, boss ladies!