This week we've come to the end of the Fully Booked Blueprint (my 10 week business transformation program) and I asked my students what they found the most valuable – and the content marketing strategy training was the popular choice. Haven't got time to read? Download the PDF here to read later.
“If you aren’t putting out relevant content in relevant places, you don’t exist.” (Very true Gary Vee!)
Content marketing helps you to put your business in front of the people you really want to work with, and so with that in mind remember that this isn’t an overnight fix – although an incredible piece of viral content can bring lots of fast exposure!Creating great content is a LONG TERM strategy. Commit, flex the muscle and keep experimenting. Click To Tweet
I wanted to send a summary of my very best strategies today to help you create better content that speaks to your audience, nurtures them into loyal customers, positions you as an industry authority and make the task a little bit easier for you.
And NO you do not need to be an “expert” to do this. In fact, its content creation that does that for you.
1 – Have an objective
If you are just creating copy because someone at an event once told you that all the big players in your industry do it, you’re not going to win.
Why? Because your objective is to be your competitor, not deliver VALUE to your audience.
So first get clear on your goals as this will determine your strategy.
Is it for SEO?
In which case you’ll want to create content that people are specifically searching Google for. See point 21.
Is it for awareness?
Tell your brand story and create highly shareable content. See point 19.
Is it for engagement?
What are people talking about in your niche? Start, encourage and continue the conversations. See point 16.
Is it for lead generation?
What pain points can you solve, and what’s the next obvious step for your customers? Perhaps its a content upgrade you need to think about too. See point 17.
What happens more commonly is a mix of different objectives and your content strategy needs to reflect that.
2 – Mobile mobile mobile
Saying that 3 times for emphasis because it amazes me that people are still putting out content that isn’t mobile friendly. More users access your site now from their mobile than desktop, so your content HAS to reflect that.
It used to be that it was a “nice to have” – simply put your business will not survive online if you don’t start paying attention to how your audience behave. And we’re glued to our mobiles!
3 – VIDEO VIDEO VIDEO
Uppercase AND repeated for emphasis. Ok, so maybe making your website more mobile-friendly is a bit of a chore right now – but there’s absolutely NO reason why you can’t be creating video because you can host it on so many social media platforms.
You don’t have to appear on it necessarily, but I promise you if you get over those stupid fears and start creating video content you’re going to see far better results in your marketing.
- Video converts better.
- Video ad costs are significantly lower.
- If a picture says a thousand words, you get the idea with video.
- Video can be repurposed into other content (see point 4).
- Users are consuming video content more than any other medium.
- Video content can be uploaded onto MANY platforms = more reach.
- Video content is the most shared content online.
Simply put, in the same way mobile was the “you should” and then became the “you must” over the past 5 years, that’s what is going to happen with video. So get ahead of your competition now by making this the core of what you do.
4 – Get captions on your video
It might surprise you to know that 85% of video content is watched without the sound on. If you aren’t putting captions on your videos, you are missing the biggest opportunities.
PLUS when you use a service like rev.com, they also give you the transcription of the video so you can turn it into a blog.
The more you repurpose content, the more reach you’re going to have and if it’s great content – that will convert into more customers.
5 – Solve pain points
Get to know your audience on a deeper level (polls and surveys are great for this!) and ask them what they need help with. I often pitch these surveys as ways to offer my audience more valuable content if they share their challenges with me.
Turn those questions into content.
6 – Get on Facebook!
Facebook is still the #1 platform for marketing – if you aren’t on there sharing content (especially VIDEO) you are missing so many opportunities. It has the lowest ad costs, which means you can promote your content in the most effective way possible too.
7 – Create content for your different buckets of audience
I’m very lucky to be mentored by the incredible Ryan Levesque. His ASK method is all about identifying the different groups of people within your market, and then market specifically to them!
For example, within the fitness niche – you might have…
- Women who have just had a baby and want to get into shape
- Women who want to improve their body
- Women who want to improve their health
- Women who want to improve their fitness
By creating content that is specific to those buckets, you’re going to have far more success with your content because you’re speaking DIRECTLY to those people instead of BROADLY appealing.
I use this in all of my marketing with huge success including a £25749 product launch in January. Ryan used it for a $3.3m launch last year! WOW!
8 – UGC
UGC stands for user generated content, and is as simple as getting your users to create the content for you.
GoPro are amazing at this – encouraging their users to share content they create using the GoPro.
This creates community, it makes content creation a BREEZE and is the very best way to promote your products. Who needs marketing, when your customers do all the marketing for you?
A simple hashtag campaign is enough to start the ball rolling with user generated content.
9 – Pay to promote your content
Yes I know you think paying for any marketing sucks. But if you want more engagement and conversions, then you’re going to have to start paying to promote your content. Organic reach simply isn’t what it used to be – but what’s great here is that you get to control who you share it with. The data you get back from using paid advertising (such as the segments of your audience that engaged with it the most) will help you shape your campaigns, learn more about your market and identify opportunities far easier.
And video content is the most cost-effective to share, as if you didn’t need any more reasons to use video.
10 – Focus on the on value
Whenever you create any piece of content, you want to create it with your customer in mind. It needs to be the resource that they most need at any given time, and remember great content is about THEM not you.
So before you get started ask yourself…
What pain point / desire the content needs to address?
How you can help?
Is this the most effective way to deliver that help? (you might need to change how you deliver it)
But more importantly, brainstorm the unanswered questions they have – what is the extra value that they just weren’t expecting?
Going above and beyond to WOW your audience is the single biggest way to deliver value, which further reinforces the need for quality over quantity. See point 14.
11 – Use strong images
Images can make or break content engagement. In my own marketing, I saw double the conversions in one particular ad campaign when I used stronger photos and half the ad cost. And that’s a stat reported across the board – using compelling images in your content can double your content views.
Great images carry more weight than written information and they increase the trust of content… beaten only by, yes you guessed it VIDEO.
12 – Don’t use passive voice
Passive voice in content is a sure-fire way to kill conversions. Or if I was to say that passively…. Conversions are killed by passive voice.
You should use an active voice in content writing.
The Yoast plugin checks this automatically in WordPress blogs – winner! Learn more here…
13 – Be yourself
Sounds obvious but when you write content that is from YOU you’re going to build a following online.
Don’t use fancy words and don’t try and be smart – unless that’s how you talk in real life. Be you and your audience will connect with your content and that’s how you build raving fans!
14 – Quality over quantity
Better to invest 10 hours into ONE mammoth piece of content with actions, references, good images and a call to action than 10 hours into 10 pieces of mediocre content. Write this mantra down – I will only publish content worthy of sharing. (That is where you’ll get the most traction!)
15 – Get good at headlines
I’m a big fan of the CoSchedule headline analyser tool. This tool will analyse your headline and help you improve it to drive traffic, shares and improve search results.
Get great at headlines, and it will help you with your ads, emails, landing pages and blogs.
It’s such an easy place to start and will give you incredible results across the board.
16 – Keep up to date with trends
Want to create content that people want to read – stay ahead of the game! That’s not always easy when you’re a busy business owner! The method I use to monitor trends is Buzz Sumo. Pay attention to the trends in industries that affect yours, not just your own and you’ll always be at the forefront of share worthy content.
17 – Give people content upgrades
What’s the next obvious step?
When someone engages with your content, what is the next obvious thing they would want? We call these content upgrades and in my opinion Hubspot are the champions of this. They create highly specialised freebies for their specific blogs, and that is why they are dominating the digital marketing world right now.
But you don’t have to be on Hubspot’s level to get success. You can create content upgrades for the various topics you talk about, rather than each individual piece of content – giving you far great conversions. Better still… focus on creating content and upgrades for your various BUCKETS! See point 7.
18 – Stay in your own lane
As much you may want to talk about anything and everything online that interests you, simply don’t!
Stick to 4 or 5 subjects you are insanely passionate about in your niche, that are directly related to your products and forget the rest. With a sprinkling of your own story of course.
19 – Get good at storytelling
Which brings me on nicely to story-telling. Stories are the most powerful tool in a copy-writers kit and will help you transform boring copy into highly engaging, share worthy content.
Stories add context, keep engagement up and encourage readers to read on.
Follow André Chaperon if you want to get better at this – he’s a god amongst marketing men!
20 – Create it for one person
I always say, if you can create content that speaks directly to one person it will speak to hundreds if not thousands more. Its just a case of getting the content in front of more of them.
So create your content with one person in mind (your dream customer) and keep doing that consistently, and you’ll be well on your way to attracting a whole audience of dream customers.
It helps to see the person too – Google their pretend name and print off a photo of the person who resembles them in your mind, and keep in front of you when you’re creating content.
- What is the value you want them to get from the content?
- What is a typical day for them?
- What are their hopes/dreams/desires?
Keep that one person in mind (along with your objectives) when you create your content, and the quality of what you put out there will massively improve.
So they are my top 20 tips for creating content that converts!! I know its a huuuuuge subject, and I hope you got a tonne of value from this post!
Hit reply and tell me which one of these was your favourite tip that you’re going to action!