Content is the most important part of content marketing. Without functional content, visibility, strategy, marketing and technology are useless. It’s like fishing without bait, in a lake full of fish.
Before planning the actual content, pay careful attention to the groundwork. This means that you should have a clear picture of who you are talking to through the content.
It’s not enough that you want to reach people responsible for B2B matters. Define your audience more precisely. For example, your goal could be to reach HR managers who are looking for a new mobile tool for monitoring working hours. Let us use this as an example in the paragraphs below.
When you know who your target person is and have defined them, implement these four elements in content creation.
Decision makers have very limited time to spend on reading. Within the first three sentences, you must convince them that reading your content will help them solve their challenges and that they should continue reading.
Even the headline alone can do this. An example headline: “HR manager’s monitoring of working hours was facilitated by a new mobile service” An example introductory paragraph: “Mobile devices have made monitoring of working hours an important data source for HR managers.”
If you can provide the reader with a must-read feeling at the outset of the content, you are already under their skin.
The problem doesn’t have to be a ground-breaking one, but it must be clear. Every product, service or technology solves a problem or a challenge. By highlighting the problem, you get the reader to think, “this is exactly how it is”. This makes the reader feel that you understand them.
In a company that provides business premises, the reader’s problem may relate to indoor air quality or the facilities’ inflexibility, lack of attractiveness or price. A boat manufacturer’s problem may relate to speed, steering control or safety.
As for the HR example, the problem could relate to receiving more data from employees’ working hours, breaks and activities that contribute to profitability.
It is important to counterbalance the problem by offering a solution. You can present the solution through a customer story or by going straight to point number 3.
Don’t focus on telling about only yourself or your product/service. Offer something which teaches the reader something new. There are two essential reasons why this is important.
Firstly, when a reader learns something new, they consider reading your content useful. Readers are more inclined to share useful content on social media.
Secondly, if the reader considers the content useful, it creates a positive image of the company. Even if the reader is not ready to purchase a service or a product at the moment, they will remember useful content. They will remember what they have read when the need to make a purchase emerges.
The useful part does not have to make up the entire text. But the whole story can be useful as well. In the boating example, you can write about the best ways to improve the safety of boating.
As for the HR example, the useful part could be: “Three types of personnel data that HR managers want to monitor, but only a few can”.
The readers are at different points on the customer decision journey. To many of them, your content may be the first interface to your company and a chance to arouse initial interest in the topic.
However, there are always some readers who are ready to make the purchase. This is an important thing to consider when planning the content and its functionality. Without careful planning, you can lose many good leads and potential customers.
You should consider what the customer’s next natural step will be. Is it downloading a guide written by an expert, ordering the product, ordering a newsletter, contacting the provider or watching a video that provides further information?
The things you use to activate the reader depend on your product and service. But it’s important to offer some alternative for action. This helps you to sort out those who are interested in the issue on a general level from those who are ready to make the purchase.
It’s also important to measure how many readers took the desired action (using Google Analytics, for example). We also encourage you to leverage this data for remarketing. You can do this, too, by using Readpeak’s platform.
In the HR example, the activated action could be downloading a product brochure or watching a video about the product.
Good content converts, generates measurable results and is useful for the reader. Do you need more content for your blog? Try Readpeak.
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