Meaningful Content Creation
In order to prompt the “Wow!” response every time, content marketers need to remember about:
Defining and understanding the target audience to clearly figure out who they are (and aren’t) writing for
Strategies and tactics to collect audience data
Using collected information to produce content that meets audiences’ needs and interests
Understand Target Audience
Most content marketers have a hard time understanding their target audience. While this task is tricky, it can be achieved with careful consideration of the below factors:
How Well Do You Know Your Offerings?
Before you can explain to your customers what your company and its offerings are all about, you should know about them thoroughly.
Think about the problems that your products and services can solve.
Ask yourself the purpose behind the existence of your offerings. Keep this aspect in mind when creating your content.
Focus on the purpose of your products/services and steer clear of redundant and irrelevant factors because if they don’t concentrate on your mission, they should stay out of your content marketing strategy.
How Well Do You Know Your Customers?
One of the first things to know when you start a venture is who your current customers are. After all, these are the people who will buy your products and services and recommend them to others if they’re happy with them.
Ask your company’s sales and marketing teams to provide you with this information
Segment the type of your customers and decipher buyer personas to serve them better
Focus on what your customers can gain by choosing you over your competitors. Is there something you offer that others don’t? Is there something you can do better than the others?
How Well Do You Know Your Competitors?
Last but not least, it is important for every business to know who its competitors are. You’re probably aware of your obvious competitors. However, dig a little deeper with the help of Google and social media to identify new competition that you may not have known about so far.
Look up keywords that are commonly used in your industry
Once the names of the businesses are displayed, check out their ‘About Us’ pages and product descriptions
This way you learn a lot about your competitors in less time
Understand What Your Target Audience Expects of You
Finding your target audience is only half the job done. In fact, the real work begins after that. You need to know their expectations, so you know what you’re working towards. Here are the three key elements that your target audience will look forward to regardless of the industry you’re in:
Customers typically go in search of products and services when they have particular questions or problems in mind. Your offerings are supposed to be the answers or solutions to their predicament. Your content, therefore, needs to be useful to your target audience, otherwise creating it will be futile.
You need to look at content as more than mere words put together to fill a blank space. Creating material just for the sake of it will lead to the production of low-quality content that audiences will instantly reject. This, in turn, will have repercussions on your reputation in the market.
Instead, consider the following:
What your target audience is thinking about
What kind of information they will find useful
What thought leadership can you provide to establish your authority
Also, keep promotional content to a minimum and focus on providing quality and value to your target audience, if you’re serious about capturing their loyalty.
According to Statista, “The statistic shows the total number of mobile phone users worldwide from 2013 to 2019. For 2017 the number of mobile phone users is forecast to reach 4.77 billion.”
Between December 2013 and December 2015, tablet Internet consumption grew by 30%.
Between December 2013 and December 2015, Smartphone Internet consumption grew by 78%.
Between December 2013 and December 2015, desktop Internet consumption dropped by 1%.
13% of adults access the Internet via mobile only. 11% access the Internet via desktop only.
Also, 33% of consumers start mobile research with a branded website.
These critical statistics should make you wonder whether or not your content is mobile-friendly. If it isn’t, then invest in a responsive website which can be viewed on any device.
Apart from that, you also need to consider the design of your website, where the content will be published. This means that it should be in keeping with your brand’s image without being dull. It is also a good idea to keep updating the website’s design every few years as trends keep changing.
Here are a few interesting statistics:
Given 15 minutes to consume content, two-thirds of people would rather read something beautifully designed than something plain.
38% of people will stop engaging with a website if the content/layout is unattractive.
After reaching a company’s website via a referral site, 50% of visitors will use the navigation menu to orient themselves.
Your website should be easy-to-use for visitors. Putting up a wall of text is not recommended either. One page of content should serve as the entrance to your website, which should make it easy for visitors to browse and ultimately convert.
Remember, regardless of how great your website content is, a poor user experience and an unresponsive website will just drive visitors away. This will prevent your posts from being shared on social media, and neither will your pages get linked in other people’s content.
Find Your Target Audience
As a startup owner, your most important jobs will relate to planning and building your business. When you begin to plan, one of the most pressing questions you’ll be faced with will be deciding who you want to direct your marketing efforts towards. You may think that your offerings appeal to a lot of people, but marketing to everyone can get you in hot water later.
Every entrepreneur wants his/her business to be known and recognized by a large number of people, but this can get extremely costly and time-consuming. It is, therefore, better to decide on your target audience by choosing who you want to spend your time, money and other resources on. Further, finding a group of people who may be interested in buying your products/services will enable you to connect and communicate with them more deeply.
Mentioned ahead are a few tips on identifying your target audience correctly:
A great way to understand who your ideal target audience is by creating an audience persona. Typically, doing so entails knowing the answers to the whos, the whats, the whens, the wheres, and the whys.
Other necessary details include covering the audiences’ gender, age, demography, family life, profession, income, needs, pain points, and challenges.
Have these details in place and you will be able to conjure up audience personas that will reveal exactly what will appeal to them collectively.
Use Google Analytics
When used correctly, Google Analytics can be tremendously helpful as it has a treasure of data about your audience. All you have to do is find it.
Google Analytics focuses on ads and gives you this information to help you buy ads and not create content
Even if you do not use this data to buy ads, you will still be able to figure out the topics your readers want to read about
Google Analytics also makes it easy to find your best and worst posts every week/month
One cannot deny that knowing the specific kinds of topics to write about is tremendously helpful. This way you can stop worrying that audiences outside your demographics may not like your content. Some might skip your content anyway, and you do not need to make everyone happy. Focus on delighting your target audience.
Facebook Can Bring You Insights
Facebook can provide a powerful set of insights on analytics too. The best thing about them is that they’re free to use. Using this feature, you can know about the demographics of your most active users and also find out the topics they have in common.
When using Facebook, read through the comments on your posts to get a better idea of what your audience expects of you
Do respond to every comment/message you receive. This way, you will know more about them from every interaction
Look for groups and communities that are relevant to you and partake in discussions by providing opinions and insights that are important to them
Take a Look at Your Twitter Followers’ Dashboard
Don’t stop at Facebook; make Twitter your ally too. Use the Twitter followers’ dashboard by signing up for a Twitter Ads account. Accessing this dashboard will tell you what your followers want from you. This includes common topics, demographic followers, and more.
Publish posts that elicit answers from the audience regarding the topics that interest them
Ask them about their problems and what do they like to do outside their working hours? Are there any products or features that they can use for their leisure activities or entertainment?
Here are a few topic ideas that can easily be turned into Twitter polls to get you started
Get on YouTube
You can get basic insights into the audience of a YouTube video if it has enough views. It means you can check out different demographics such as age group, gender, and the geographical locations of the audience interested in your business videos. It will also allow you to determine the outreach of your existing marketing strategy. In short, a simple analysis of your company’s or competitors’ YouTube video can be used to create meaningful video marketing content for your target audience.
Carry out Customer Surveys
Customer surveys allow you to perform real-time analysis of your target audience. These surveys are not limited only to products and services. Your content marketing strategy can benefit from a periodic survey of its readers. Most bloggers are aware of the fact that some posts have much better following than others. Conducting a blog reader survey can help you fix this problem. The following are a few benefits of a customer survey:
It will allow you to identify your most dedicated readers and gain a better perception of their interests and needs. You can also focus on creating content that resolves their top concerns
It is the best way to show your target audiences that you care about their opinions, making them feel more involved in your content marketing strategy
Instead of running ahead with a story, you can get direct insights into the topics they enjoy reading from you
The biggest advantage of conducting a blog reader survey is that it allows you to determine if your readers are your actual end-customers and devise a marketing plan accordingly
Once you understand the mindset of your target audience, you can create better content in the future. You can acquire exclusive data for your intrinsic content strategy and marketing research by conducting a blog reader survey.
Use Automated Emails
No online marketer can deny the ability of automated emails to connect with potential customers. You can use these emails to get valuable feedback from your target audience. For instance, you can set up an automated emailing program that pings your registered users about 30 days after the signup to find out if they liked your content.
These tools allow you to communicate with your target audience on a personal level and provide you with a better insight of their mindset. Here is a list of automated email tools that you may find useful.
Analyze Customer Data
This may sound surprising, but your online consumers, including blog readers, newsletter subscribers, and social media followers may not be the end customers who buy your products or services. Usually, there are two reasons behind this outcome:
More groups of people are interested in buying your product and service
The content is attracting the wrong group of consumers
In either case, you need to redesign your marketing strategy to pull in the right audience. However, the first thing you need to do is identify the right target audience, which can be achieved by analyzing customer data. Backed with a thorough customer data analysis, you may be able to create a thriving online presence. Check out this guide on where to find this data and how to analyze it.
Create Engaging Content Ideas
Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned content marketer, the biggest challenge you are going to face is coming up with great content ideas. Once you have created a dedicated following, your audience starts to expect more from you. Over time, you need to create plenty of high-end content. Without impressive content ideas, you run the risk of losing the hard-earned target audience in a matter of weeks.