One goal for content marketing is to continuously draw in new potential customers so that you can get on the radar of your target audience. With content marketing, you can help create a great first impression, remind existing customers of your offers, and delight them too. But first, you must draw them in.
Let’s look at how to use content marketing to draw in new potential customers…
Publish Informational and Educational Blog Posts
A new potential customer is someone who may still be in the awareness stage of their research about their problems and the solutions offered.
For this reason, use your blog to post educational and informational content that systemically teaches them about their problems and points them toward your solutions too.
Write Guest Posts
You can do the same thing with guest posting. Find out where your ideal audience hangs out and offer to contribute guest posts that are very targeted and relevant.
Don’t pay for the privilege. You may even be able to find sites that will pay you instead. You are giving them something of value, and the value for you is the links back to your landing pages.
Encourage and Incentivize User-Generated Content
The content your users generate can also attract more search engine traffic. When users put a lot of content on your behalf – such as comments on blog posts, social media posts, or in your forum – that helps other people trust you more and makes search engines send more people to your information.
Curate Relevant Content
You can also use curated content to help get the attention of your ideal customers.
When you create a one-stop-site for all the information about your niche directed toward your audience, it’s just a natural progression to mention relevant content and discussions happening and give your thoughts on it.
Solicit Expert Content
You can also ask people that you believe have something to offer your audience the opportunity to guest post on your blog. Allow them to directly sell their information through the blog post, and you’ll find more willing participants.
If you’re an affiliate, you’ll earn from the effort, too, while also providing interesting content to your audience.
Incorporate Images That Make Your Audience Curious
Always include images in every post that help advance the meaning of the information you’ve shared with them.
Also, if you include video, infographics that explain data, and other images into your content that look interesting and match your brand, you’ll cause them to be curious enough to click through.
It’s Okay to Entertain Your Audience Too
Don’t forget that the content you create for business awareness doesn’t have to be boring and uninteresting. You can use interactive quizzes and games as well to attract and inform your audience.
Trade Something of Value for Their Email
Remember that every single piece of content you create should also somehow move them to your list.
You can accomplish this by offering gated content in addition to the initial content that brought them to your site so that you can move them to your list. The list is where you’ll encourage them to become customers.
Using content to draw in new potential customers is one of the ways that content marketing is most effective. You put the material in front of them, give them what they want essentially, and then they join you so that you can tell them about your offers and thus finally solve their problems.
Why You Don’t Want to Try to Sell Them Directly in Your Content
Content marketing is not about the direct sale. While you may view a sales page as content, and it is part of it, content marketing is a long-term strategy and process by which you develop, create, publish, and promote informative and educational content that helps you reach your goals.
This doesn’t mean you don’t give the audience opportunities to buy, or that you don’t include a call to action, but content marketing is more a seduction process than it is a direct selling process.
The content that you develop and publish works its way through the buying cycle in a deliberate way and is almost never forceful, always putting your ideal customer first.
Instead of focusing on sales, focus on:
- Delivering Value – Whenever you produce content, besides setting a goal for it, you should also ensure that it provides something of value for the consumer. This means that it needs to solve a problem or define a problem or do something that the user determines has value. You can only do this by fully studying your audience so that you know the pain points and the available solutions for your ideal audience.
- Creating Personalized Content – The more the content speaks directly to the reader or viewer, the better. Try to create content that is as personalized as possible, using all the technology you can afford to ensure the most up-to-date and possible personalization. This is especially important in email marketing.
- Building Trust – The content you publish on your blog can also work to build trust. The more consistent you are with your brand voice and the messages you deliver to your audience, the more people will naturally trust you.
- Getting Back Links – One of the goals for publishing content is so that it gets shared, and the person who shared it is offering more links to your content so more people can find you. To ensure you get more shares, you’ll have to create more shareable content like infographics, for example.
- Asking and Answering Questions – This is a great way to demonstrate your knowledge and expertise. Ask questions of your audience so that they can give their opinion and give your opinion about your expertise freely by answering their questions.
- List Building – This is almost the most important part of content marketing. Use content marketing right by producing lots of opportunities within the content you publish to get your audience to move to your lists, such as in-content downloads, gated content, freebies, and more.
- Getting to Know Your Audience – The more content you publish, the more opportunities you have to engage with and get to know your audience. If engagement is a goal, always ensure you include the right calls to action to ensure it happens.
When you understand that content does make sales but that it is not supposed to appear like a sales letter to your audience, then it is easier to understand the way content marketing works.
Each piece of content needs a clear non-sales-oriented goal, as mentioned above, with clear steps for achieving the goal included.
When you start understanding that content marketing is a long-term strategy for building your business, you’ll realize how powerful it really is.
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