Content marketing, when done right, can be a serious game changer for your creative business. There is a whole lot of content marketing advice out there right now and I’ve found that the best way to develop your own content strategy is to first and foremost really get your head around content marketing, what it is, and how powerful it can be for your business and brand.
Today I want to share with you a super simple task that will hopefully help you to get your head around exactly what content marketing is and how it can help you to create content that will turn your audience into clients, customers, and lifelong brand ambassadors. Because all of the formula and strategy in the world doesn’t mean anything if you can’t actually get your head around what it is you’re implementing. And if you're completely new to content marketing? I shared a quote from the Content Marketing Institute in my Say More With Less: An Alternative Approach To Content Marketing post that sums it up perfectly:
1. Think of a time you bought or almost bought something online. Whether it’s an e-Book, a one-on-one service, a website design, a handmade product etc
Very rarely do we buy on impulse. Studies suggest that the average consumer has to engage with a product or service seven times before they take the leap into hitting buy now. So if you’re anything like me, whenever you buy something online I bet it’s because you were pretty sure it was worth handing over your money for the product or service in return.
Think of a time when you bought something on online. Maybe it’s an e-Book, a service, or a handmade product. If it’s something within your industry that’s even better, as that will help you to really dig into the process behind it in the next step.
2. Then explore the process and relationship that led you to investing or consider investing in that product or service
What was the process between you seeing this product or service and taking the leap into hitting purchase? Ask yourself:
- What made me trust enough in the creator behind it to invest my money and time into this product or service?
- What was it about their online presence that attracted me in the first place and helped to build that trust?
- What was it about this product that caught my attention? How did the sales copy and the way it was presented play a part in my purchasing decision?
3. Make a list of all the people online who you would happily buy from if they released something that was suited to you
I have this list of people in my mind who I would most likely buy from if and when they release a product or service that is suited to my price point and current needs. My list looks a little something like Halley Gray, By Regina, Hey Shenee, Tara Gentile, Braid Creative, and Hey Sweet Pea.
Figure out who’s on your list. Who do you follow and love that you wouldn’t have any fears buying from?
4. Explore the process and journey that has led you to developing that relationship with their brand as a consumer
There’s a reason they’re on your list. Dig deep and start to explore the process and journey that has led to you building that relationship with them as a reader and a consumer.
For me it’s because their content has actually helped me to make practical and positive change. More than just adding to the noise, the people I trust as a consumer actually say something that teaches, enables, and inspires me to move forward in my own business and life. They’ve built their own methodologies, their personal brands are ones I can connect with, and I consider them all thought leaders and game changers in their industry.
Figure out what it is that has built that relationship for you with your list - explore your own process of becoming a reader to a lifelong brand ambassador and consumer.
5. Do you start to see a pattern?
Hopefully by now you will have started to see content marketing in action. If you can start to understand how content marketing has turned you from a passive reader into an active consumer, then you will hopefully be able to dig deeper into it to then figure out how best you can do the same with your own audience too.
It’s all about creating authentic, high quality, useful content that builds trust, shares your expertise, is relevant for your audience, and shares your brand message along the way too. But anyone can do this - there’s so much useful content out there these days that it’s way more than just whipping up a useful ‘how to’ post with generic information people can find anywhere on the internet.
Content marketing is a game changer when you can tap into your own personal brand, your own methodology, and your own view points that attract the right audience for you.
6. Figure out what that means for you and your business and brand
There is no one-size-fits-all way to build content marketing strategy. It has to be rooted in your brand, your business needs, and your own goals and intentions if you want it to make any serious waves online. But whether you’re a service based business, an infopreneur, or you sell physical products, content marketing can take you from a person with an awesome vision to someone who actually brings that vision to life in a way that is both profitable and purposeful.
Take the time to explore how content marketing can play a role in your business. How can you develop an online presence, brand, and content that attracts the right audience for you and converts them into clients, customers, and lifelong brand ambassadors along the way?
Further reading for you: Attract & Repel: A Content Planning Session For Creative Entrepreneurs
No blog post or podcast or video can tell you exactly how to create content marketing for your brand that allows you to build a business that is purposeful, profitable, and thriving in your industry. It can however hopefully be an awesome jumping off point for you to start figuring out exactly how you can develop the best content strategy for you. But the best strategy is going to come from a place of really understanding your business, what it is you offer, the value behind what it is you do, and the needs of your customers and clients too. But once you figure it out? You can then start to make some pretty awesome things happen with your business and brand.
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