7 Necessary Content Marketing Skills to Generate More Leads
Copywriting, repackaging, and data analysis are all part of the deal
How do you craft compelling content that engages and keeps audiences glued to your message?
Learning effective content marketing involves understanding the true purpose of your content and the mechanics that drive engagement. It’s an elaborate and exhaustive process.
It’s important to understand what it takes before you start your first or next campaign. Here are seven content marketing skills you must have.
1) Research What Your Audiences Want
Do your research before starting a marketing campaign. You want to create content that resonates best with your audience. Otherwise, you can spend thousands on a campaign that sends the wrong message — getting you zero results and making your readers feel like they’ve wasted their time.
To prevent the above from happening, your researching skills have to be on point. Researching provides valuable insight into your customers and allows you to create content that supports your key messages.
Use forums, social media, and SEO tools to uncover your customers’ pains and desires. Try and determine the following based on the topics that are being discussed:
Who are your audiences?
Understanding who will benefit from your products and services is crucial to content marketing. It opens them up to your content since it speaks directly to them and their problems. Are they single parents? What are their interests? What products do they already buy? These data points help you to know more about your target audiences.
Where can you find your audiences?
Almost 2.1 billion people are online and they spend an average of 16 hours online per month. Knowing where they spend their time — be it on social media sites (the most significant online use), shopping sites, or forums — gives you an idea of how to best distribute your content.
What are their problems and primary concerns?
When you know who your core audiences are, you can engage them and listen to their needs. Create personas that embody your ideal customers — understand how they deal with their problems and desires, and discover what their goals are. Answering their most pressing concerns allows you to market your content as the ideal solution to their problems.
2) Create Content With a Purpose
Each piece of content needs to have a clear purpose. What’s the impact you want it to make on your readers? Knowing where you want your audience to go will help you steer their actions in that direction.
Content that emotionally connects with its audience is only half of the job, it should also contain a relevant call to action.
3) Know How to Capture Attention
It’s easy to close a web browser. You may think that your content is good enough, but to stand out from the rest, you need to capture the reader’s attention in the first five seconds they’re on your page. You need to make sure they scroll down the page and not hit the back button faster than a speeding bullet. To hold your audiences’ attention:
Write attention-grabbing headlines
People keep reading because they feel intrigued, amused, passionate, or maybe even scared. Your headline needs to draw out these emotions. If you don’t, the rest will rarely get read (even if it’s a life-changing 5,000-word article).
Start the habit of going on Buzzfeed to see which headlines are working. Try to incorporate something that keeps your readers up at night or pose a solution to a problem they have. This will grow your readership.
Hook them with the opening lines
People want to see that an article is for them. After the headline, they make this determination within the first few sentences. Use the CDS formula:
Call out. Call out the reader or target audience so they know the content is written for them.
Description of the problem. The article should describe the problem that the reader is having.
Solution. This hints at the answer the reader will get by reading the article.
Use the CDS formula to lure your audience into reading the rest of the content. People can be pretty self-absorbed— an introduction that seems to be written for them will make them hungry to read the rest of the article.
Use the right meta descriptions to increase CTR
Meta descriptions are typically discussed in SEO strategies. Although it plays a role in content marketing since both elements often overlap. Content marketing and SEO are the ultimate tag team. Writing the right meta description will bolster your content marketing efforts.
One tip for writing a good meta description is to include relevant keywords. Also, include a call to action to entice your audience to read on.
4) Write Compelling Copy
Content marketing is designed to educate and inform the audience. It should also include a call to action. Compelling copy unearths an urgent need the reader has and directs them to act.
This could be as simple as signing up for your newsletter, subscribing to your YouTube channel, or buying a product.
Learning the subtle art of psychology can result in a compelling, articulately written copy. Studying the basics of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs is an excellent way to start.
5) Know How to Repackage Successful Content
Content marketing strategies based on research will take you far. However, you really don’t know what content will go viral or be successful until you hit publish. Content audits help to evaluate what’s working and point to successful content you can repurpose on other media. This can present you with several opportunities:
Building backlinks through guest posts
Detailed resources and comprehensive how-to guides can be broken down into smaller blog posts. You can use these pieces of information in guest post opportunities. (You already know that the data is valuable based on your own stats.) Why not share this with another website to boost your brand and get a link in return?
Create a series of eBooks
As your website fills up with content, consider combining several articles into an eBook. This is a great way to show off your expertise in a visually appealing and practical way. Distributing eBooks through popular channels like Amazon Kindle, Google Play Books, and Good Reads can help establish your website’s authority.
Google looks for this when evaluating the quality of a page — it’s expertise, authority, and trustworthiness (E-A-T).
Offer a compelling lead magnet
An opt-in form on your site allows you to keep in touch with your audiences. To entice email sharing, create a series of newsletters from your articles that help readers solve a particular problem.
Package related content as a lead magnet in different categories on your site. This allows you to have a targeted opt-in form and to design your email sequences appropriately. If you have the skill, turn your articles into interesting videos. This tends to convert better on lead pages.
Use it as social media content
If you’ve run out of ideas for social media content, rewriting and publishing content on social media platforms can renew interest in a particular topic. You can also receive a spike in traffic if the subject is popular with your audiences.
To be clear, I’m not suggesting that you just post a link or copy and paste your article on social platforms. I’m referring to actually pulling pieces of content and creating multiple images to promote your post or chopping up your video into bit-sized nuggets of information to share and promote.
6) Measure Data Accurately
Before you repurpose or repackage content, you should understand key metrics and only use content that has performed well. You can do this every month if you do content marketing regularly.
A few metrics to look out for are:
- Bounce rate and on-site time
- SEO data and keywords that climbed higher in the search engines
- How well it converts based on your call to action
- How many social shares it gets and how audiences react to it
7) Strategically Use Links Within Content
For content to be considered authoritative, it needs to have external links to relevant, trusted sites.
Start with a Google search and link to sites that appear in the top ten. Google already views these websites as having a high authority, so it helps your page to link to it.
You can also use Alexa to find pages that are ranking 100,000 and below and linking to those websites. By doing this, you’re telling Google your page is the ultimate resource on the topic, which helps it rank better. Link from a previously published post to your new content to help Google find your content faster and so it gets indexed. This also helps with navigation for your website’s visitors.
Content marketing is a skill that will be in demand for a long time. The above (and necessary) talents will set you apart from the rest and help you be successful.