You know that growing your customer base through content marketing is important. At the same time, people these days have a lot of choices at their fingertips. They want to know that you are willing to go that extra step to make their experiences worthwhile.
Building great customer relationships is key. If you aren’t putting customers at the center of your efforts, then perhaps it’s time to rethink your strategy.
Looking for interesting ways to use content marketing to show your customers extra love, build loyalty, and grow your business? Here are a few tips to start you off.
Your customers want to learn about what you do, but they don’t just want to hear about how great you are. Luckily for your, there are ways to merge promotion of your product or service with great value.
The best way to start out is by taking to heart The Sales Lion’s (aka Marcus Sheridan) philosophy:
They ask, you answer.
In other words, begin by brainstorming about all the questions your prospects and customers ask. Then answer those questions one by one.
Answering as many customer questions as you can shows:
- You take the time to understand customer needs
- Your business is full of industry experts
- You think beyond your product/service to all the other related issues that could perplex your audience
And – bonus – you will drive traffic to your site.
Really think about the issues before you begin developing your content. Some answers might be simple. Perhaps a short blog post or video will do.
Other times, the answers may be complex. In that case, you may be better served by doing in-depth research. Then you can offer an ebook with in-depth information about the results, as well as an infographic to graphically explain the summary of the results.
As you are creating your content, also consider how best to promote it. Different social media channels require different content marketing approaches and might attract different audiences.
For example, perhaps your LinkedIn channel audience wants to hear about the method you used to conduct your study. However, your Instagram audience may more interested in a single, captivating, graphically-interesting factoid from the study. And on Pinterest, you might include the entire infographic with a link back to your blog post.
- Answer your customers’ questions to show them you care and drive traffic to your site
- Offer a variety of different content types across your site, depending on how complex the answer is
- Promote your content pieces via social media – but adjust your manner of promotion depending on the channel you are using
Looking for more ideas on channeling the Voice of the Customer (VoC)? Try following these 6 Tips for Channeling Voice of Customer to Boost Content and Social Media Marketing Efforts.
Provide Personalized Content
There are many ways to provide personalized content across your website. Some tools (like HubSpot, for example) will adjust the content a visitor sees according to the content they previously showed an interest in. Did your customer download an eBook about Healthcare? Then the next time that person comes to your site, show him something about Healthcare on the home page.
The same holds true for your social media streams. For example, you could post a link to your new Healthcare eBook on Twitter. You could even pin it at the top of your stream to get extra clicks. However, you’ll be far more effective if you send a personalized Tweet to those you know are interested in Healthcare, including a link to the piece in your message.
Here are just a few ways you can create a more targeted campaign:
- Use Twitter Lists – Create a Twitter list of people from a specific vertical and use that list to create campaigns promoting a “cheat sheet” around a relevant topic
- Tag People – Tag appropriate groups of people when you post links on Facebook (for example, if you are posting a piece of content about surviving pregnancy, tag people in that stage of life)
- Try Tools – Use tools like Insightpool or Socedo to create campaigns around people who have indicated in their social media streams that they will be going to the same event you’ll be attending; offer them a “sneak peek” at a valuable piece of content around the topic you’ll be presenting on at the event
- Target Ads – Target people who work at a specific company using Facebook or LinkedIn ads, and offer them content that relates to (and maybe even mentions) their company
Providing personalized content will help your customers see that you see them as individuals with specific needs. At the same time, the more targeted your content is, the more quality visitors you’ll have. Even better, those people will truly want to download your pieces and will be more likely to turn into loyal customers.
- Personalized content is much more effective than simply shouting your content to the wind
- You can personalize content in numerous ways, including by vertical, lifestyle, event attendance, company, title, etc.
- Remember that the content marketing game isn’t just about numbers – it’s about getting the right visitors who you can transform into lifelong customers
Want more tips on growing customer love for specific groups on social media channels? Discover How to Do Content Marketing and Social Media for Your Niche.
Share Their Stories
One great way to cement customer love is to share their stories, skills, advice, and more. Everyone wants a moment in the spotlight. So why not provide an opportunity to allow your customers to shine?
Contests offer a great opportunity for customers to share their skills. For instance, the data visualization company Visme recently held a contest that encouraged people to create infographics that told stories about their lives. The company then shared the winners’ infographics, as well as all other submissions.
The contest provided an outlet for creative individuals to share their talents and stories. At the same time, it was a great tool to drive new visitors and users to the Visme site. It also provided Visme with free content to show many different ways users could easily create cool infographics.
Another personal story that brought in great publicity comes from PowToon, an animation tool. It all started when one user published a video about being bullied.
PowToon decided to take a stand. The company made the video anonymous, removing any identifiable user information. The business then asked users to watch it and submit videos showing sympathy and support for the creator of the video. The results were heartening and moving. The company did a good deed, gained new users, bolstered its reputation, and gained customer loyalty in one fell swoop.
- Contests are a great way to drive new users to your site, as well as grow customer interest
- Customers like to be highlighted as skilled individuals – and entering a well done contest is just plain old fun
- Consider creating a contest with an emotional theme; enroll your customers in your efforts to make the world a better place and you’ll not only win their business, but also their hearts
Need more ideas for sharing customer stories? Learn more about How to Include Customers in Your Content Marketing.
Create a Content Marketing Lovefest
As the author and poet Antoine de Saint-Exupery said,
True love is inexhaustible; the more you give, the more you have. And if you go to draw at the true fountainhead, the more water you draw, the more abundant is its flow.
To gain customer trust and love, you must first show your love to them – and you must be genuine. People will know in an instant if you are not sharing from the heart. But if they feel you are showing true love, they will give you love in return.
How do you show customers your love? Share your stories with me in the comments section below or Tweet me up at @HollyChessman.