Not that long ago, Marina Barayeva-host of Marketing for Creatives-interviewed me on her podcast.
With more than 80 episodes, Marina has interviewed some of the best marketers in business including Dr. Michael Hudson, Liz Pineda, Mike Kim, Pia Silva, and Dorie Clark... just to name a few.
So you can imagine the honor I felt to have my episode air on her podcast's first birthday!
Listen to my interview as I share tips and insights for writing product launch copy.
You are certain to discover the copywriting secrets that can help you sell more when you launch your products.
Get my free checklist for your next product launch to guide you through what you need to do when.
Content marketing is all the rage these days. Personally, I get how and why it works. But others I’ve talked to have a hard time understanding how content can create value.
So let’s unpack this, shall we? What makes content valuable to people?
Content becomes valuable to people for different reasons. Perhaps it teaches them something new or affirms what they already know. Maybe a particular piece of content addresses a problem or pain point someone has been experiencing.
Regardless of whatever drew the reader to the content you’ve created, your hook brings the person one step closer to building a relationship with you or your business. Over time, if you consistently deliver relevant content, the person will be drawn to you. And that person will trust you and maybe even begin to view you as an expert or authority about the topic for which you’ve produced content.
The individual may even begin to follow what you do and engage with you. This engagement could occur in a variety of ways. Perhaps they start posting comments on your blog or following you on social media outlets. Or—I know this is hard to image in today’s digital world—they may even call you or send you a letter in the mail. Okay, I know snail mail might be a rarity these days; so, perhaps they’ll take a moment to email you. However they go about it — they are engaging and interacting with you.
Let’s look at this from a personal interest perspective. If you want to learn how to live a ketogenic lifestyle—I know that may sound obscure but I happen to follow a ketogenic lifestyle— you’re going to spend some time (like I did) looking for information about how to live a ketogenic lifestyle.
What if you have a business? Maybe you have a company that sells pre-employment assessments. Prospective customers that have a need to use pre-employment assessments in their company are going to do online research for information about pre-employment assessments. They will also research for things that relate to the top of pre-employment assessments, such as why it is important or how it has helped other people.
Whether you’re searching for something for yourself or you’re trying to spread the word about what your company does—finding or creating content that speaks to an issue, problem, hobby or lifestyle is ultimately the key.
The good news is that the Internet and search engines make finding whatever type of content someone needs pretty darn easy.
Back to our original question, what makes content valuable? It depends… on the person and what they are seeking.
As you think about creating content, you need to consider a few things:
There’s a lot more to the process of creating valuable content. But if you start with those three things, you’ll begin the journey of creating valuable content right.
Want a list of the types of content to create? Download my free infographic, "Content to Build Engagement."
Earlier today I presented during a new hire orientation session for one of my start-up clients where I function as a part-time VP of Marketing. The majority of these new hires would be working in sales.
Here are some of the thoughts I shared during my portion of the session.
Marketing is here to:
Support Sales Goals
Marketing is here to build the company brand and support sales goals. We do that by managing email campaigns, creating collateral you can use with prospects, planning trade shows, writing blog posts, creating campaigns, etc. The list of the types of support marketing provides is endless.
Create Sticky Content
We are continually looking for testimonials and case studies that we can capture to tell the success story of our company. When you’re negotiating contracts, include marketing as part of that deal. Use marketing options as a negotiation point. For example, "We’ll give you x-percent off if you agree to provide us with a case study and/or testimonial and/or let us issue a press release."
Generate Qualified Leads
Ultimately, one primary goal of marketing is to generate qualified leads. This can be done in a variety of ways through thought-leadership webinars, testimonial calls, speaking engagements, etc. We’re at the beginning of our marketing program so we have a long way to go. But know that these types of things are on our radar. Right now we are making sure that anything we do attracts and educates prospects - so it is easier for you to sell to them.
Align Messaging with Two-Way Communications
It is vitally important for sales and marketing to be in sync so we can support each other. By doing so we can effectively communicate with existing clients and prospects using the same language. Common messaging should be reflected in our elevator pitch, collateral, slide decks, emails that are sent, etc. Likewise, if you hear about a trade show you think we should be part of or a publication we should connect with - let us know.
The Bottom Line: "How can we help" is marketing's mantra. Just let us know any questions or thoughts you may have. Remember: the only dumb question is the one you didn't ask.
There are many types of downloadable content. The types of content you use should really be driven by the prospect you’re trying to attract and their stage of the buying process.
Prospective customers are typically in one of three stages: Awareness, Evaluation or Purchase Mode. Here’s a breakdown:
The latter chart shows recommended types of content for each of the three levels.
All pieces of content should be designed to build trust and authority with prospects while establishing the company as a thought leader in the industry.
So what types of downloadable content is on your content calendar list?
If you build your Brand RAMP before you do anything else, you’ll be sure to come to mind when your target audience desires your product or service.
Since you can’t really predict when that need is going to occur — you want to position your brand, and products or services to come to mind when that time of need happens. This means either the prospective buyer will already know about you and think of your offerings when the need arises, or you will be recommend by others.
How do you do this? By building your Brand RAMP.
RAMP is an acronym for:
Of course, prospects have to do more than recognize your name. They won't buy if they don't know what you provide and how what you offer is different and better than potential competitors. (This is the A of the Brand RAMP --Articulate.)
If you can get existing customers to memorize what you do and prefer your products or services over others — you’ll continue to win prospective customers when they talk about their favorite vendors with others.
So what are you waiting for? Begin building your Brand RAMP today!