Are you pumping out content but not getting the results you’re looking for?

Are you struggling to attract your ideal clients?

A lot of people come to me with these problems not realising they’re missing a critical piece of the puzzle.

Content marketing shouldn’t be a guessing game. What you think your audience needs isn’t necessarily what’s most engaging to them. Have you done any research? Have you profiled your core segments? Or are you just creating content in the hope that something will stick?

Instead of looking for results, try shifting your focus to providing value to your target market. You will only gain something from your content if your audience gains something.

Hook, Line & Sinker

Anyone can pick up a fishing rod, pick a spot and wait to catch a humongous fish. You might get lucky with a couple of bites. You may even catch a squid. But without the expertise of a fisherman, your only hope of catching that fish is luck.

With the help of a fisherman, you don’t have to figure it out as you go and hope for the best. The fisherman will teach you what bait will attract the fish you’re looking to catch. They’ll teach you techniques and strategies to increase your chances of victory. And they’ll be there to support you if anything goes wrong.

Of course, you can’t always have a fisherman by your side.

Before you master the art of content marketing yourself, you’ll need to learn the basics.

To attract relevant and qualified leads that will generate revenue for your business, you need to view content as the vehicle that takes you to your destination: your target market.

I’ve put together four simple strategies to kickstart your content marketing journey. Even if you’re new to the game, these tips will get you thinking about what value you really provide your customers. You’ll learn how to better communicate with your audience. But, most importantly, these strategies will guarantee you’re targeting the right people at the right time.

Let’s dive in.

  1. Tools of the Trade

Your ideal client may be looking for your help, but they also want to help themselves.

Think about it: what if the fisherman did all the work for you without teaching you what to do? You wouldn’t learn anything, meaning you’ll be back at square one the next time you want to catch a fish.

And you’ll probably feel defeated, leaving you more likely to give up on your goals.

On the other hand, if the fisherman gives you the tools to catch a fish on your own, you’ll feel both empowered to come back and confident in your newfound abilities. And you’ll be more likely to reach out to the fisherman again or recommend them to a friend.

Content tools are a powerful way to share your expertise in a useful manner, but they can also help you identify the needs of your clients.

I provide free content tools on my website for a variety of different marketing challenges. From finding your ideal client to writing your very own business blog, I cover all the bases to appeal to the common problems my clients face.

  • What problems do you solve for your clients?
  • What expertise can you share with your community?
  • Why do people seek your services?

Consider these questions and start thinking about what tools you can provide your clients.

  1. Checklist

Another common content challenge is aligning your offerings with the needs of your ideal clients. Your clients are either looking for something specific (meaning they’ve done their research) or they need help figuring out what steps to take.

I’ve found checklists to be effective in getting that alignment right. Unlike tools, which act as a guide to forming a new skill, checklists help your prospects identify their needs and expose any gaps.

Perhaps they need more than they originally thought or missed something they hadn’t considered.

Remember, checklists are designed to be easy-to-read and scannable. A good checklist will light a spark in your audience’s brain that will get them thinking about the possibilities. Your content tools should be in-depth, but your checklist(s) should be a glimpse of potential: the value you provide and the value they’ll gain.

To create an engaging checklist, you’ll need to frame it so that it appropriately reflects your services: Are you trying to help your clients identify their current limitations or explore new opportunities?

Checklists are helpful because they demonstrate that you’ve done the hard thinking for clients. They can quickly determine if you’re right for the job and they will be more likely to reach out with follow up questions.

  1. The Sport of Reporting

Remember when we said that content marketing shouldn’t be guesswork?

Reporting is your opportunity to get a bunch of insightful data that will help you create more targeted and engaging content.

The easiest way to secure this data is to conduct customer surveys, which can easily be done via email or over the phone. Your survey questions should be clear and concise to keep the commitment low for your subjects (which means you’ll have a higher response rate).

So, start by asking yourself some questions:

  • What are you trying to achieve with these surveys?
  • What customer intelligence is most valuable to your business at this time?
  • What are your priorities?

Rather than trying to improve your business holistically, keep your survey honed into something specific. If you’re trying to create more engaging content, keep your questions on this topic and avoid veering off into broader territory.

Reporting helps you uncover how your clients think and feel about your business, which gives you direction moving forward. And when you accrue this useful data, you’ll be able to establish a game plan for your next strategy, which means you’ll be kicking goals in no time.

  1. Newsletters

You’ve provided value through your suite of free tools.

You’ve helped your prospects identify their needs with a checklist.

And you’ve figured out a way forward through customer surveys.

Now it’s time to communicate and connect with your audience.

Newsletters are the bread and butter of Conqurve simply because they work so well. A newsletter will keep your business front of mind, inform your customers of any exciting offers or updates and make your prospects feel like they’re being thought of.

Unlike the other three strategies, newsletters are your opportunity to create a dialogue with your customers. Proving stand-alone value is great but creating an ongoing synergy with your customers is the secret to success.

Remember to keep value at the heart of your newsletters. Even if you’re communicating business updates, your newsletters should always offer value to the person reading. The best way to achieve this is to lead with your most powerful piece of content. Whatever will resonate most with your audience will work best as the focus of your newsletter. The rest will flow naturally.

About the Author


Director

Owner of Conqurve Content Marketing, ex-recruiter, sports writer and journalist.