Do you ever get invited to a corporate event, try say a webinar, generic a conference call or a live, remedy in person event and the presenter is so busy talking about how great they are, and all their achievements you move on to something else? The best kind of content marketing strategy is one which is focused on your client’s needs and potential value to your customer first, your expertise, solution or product second.
Sales presentations, proposals, blogs or web content which kicks off with a slide, sentence or two about their company is good to set the stage for the presentation to establish credibility. Some times, you get so caught up in your own greatness you forget to demonstrate you understand what your clients are going through.
Once, I dialed in to a conference call and the Digital Marketing expert spent about 75 percent of his time giving a sales pitch, and 25 percent of the time discussing what his audience was looking for. In this case, the host was pitching his digital marketing course and book, but I found him so self-centered, and full of B.S. I wanted to punch the guy half way through the webinar. I followed up with an e-mail to him and expressed how self-serving I thought the webinar was, yet I never heard back.
Nobody Cares About Enough About Your Vision For it to be on Your Home Page
Customers and prospects care about your values though, to know if you have common causes, goals and aspirations.
To demonstrate how you understand your clients’ needs, here are some ways to show you care, understand, and know the road to success:
- Talk about a customer you helped to reach their goals, or quote from a customer who said they loved you, your products or services.
- Demonstrate how your own company has reaped the benefits from using your product or applying the principles you preach in your pitch. (How’s that for a tongue twister?) I know you are saying, but you said not to talk about yourself! The truth is though, quite often the way you learn the value of your expertise is by wading through the stuff yourself in a real world way and either sinking or swimming with it. It’s like going to a hamburger place and the chef is a vegetarian or eats at the competitor’s place across the way.
If a company isn’t willing to “eat their own dog food” why would you want to? So a case study showing your realized benefits (even if it takes awhile to get there) does show value. Just don’t embellish it, or you could harm your credibility.
- Curate and share content from thought leaders in your industry. Just make sure you maintain your own “voice” when you share their content. When you quote from an analyst, or other sort of expert, make it clear that you actually read and understand the context of what is said in the article. If you just keep sharing content from the same source over and over, your clients and/or prospects might start to question if you are just quick on the mouse click or have an auto-share set up an wouldn’t know anything about your topic if it smacked you in the face.
Some good and bad examples of content strategy when it relates to sales copy
Jay Baer is somewhat of a legend in the content marketing world. If you check out Jay’s sales page on a real estate eBook, he has a good balance of the “Hey, me and my buddy Joe Manausa know what we’re talking about”, and the right amount of “I understand you are a home owner or looking for a new home. Here are some ways and resources you can attain your real estate buying goals, but if you want the shiniest diamonds of our knowledge, you’ll have to pony up $3 of your hard-earned money!”
If you’d like to see five great examples of “Self-Centered Marketing”, check out this fun video from LeadPages. They do ask for your e-mail address to see the whole video, however this site has a number of gems of wisdom. You might be able to fake your way through anyway.
In any case, I hope you have found some inspiration in this post to get out and develop some customer-focused client marketing materials. Oh and besides client focused, here are some other content marketing strategy tips you can take to the bank:
- Longer page content rules SEO. Those 250-500 page blogs, sorry, not doing you much good. Experts say it’s 1200 plus words now. I’m crushing 700 with this puppy, but won’t hit 1200 no how. Next time. Can’t write that much content you say? Why not hire a freelance web content writer? The Cloudworker is open for business!
- Always keep an eye on your competitor’s rankings, keywords, and other performance data. Don’t be obsessive about it, just keep it in mind. Buzz Sumo and gShift Web Presence Optimizer are a few great tools to keep an eye on your competitors without spending a lot of time gathering data.
- Make it as easy as possible for clients to find out how to contact you if they like you. Be approachable and positive on social media, in public and in your content. Have your phone number and e-mail address on every page. Mine’s on the bottom of every page.
The So Bad, It’s Good
Examples of shamelessly self-centered promotional marketing include the ALS Ice-Bucket challenge and the Coke “Your Name on Our Bottle/Can” campaign. Look at me! But in an unapologetic way.
Do you have any secret sauce ideas for content marketing, or have you seen any companies which have demonstrated excellence in selfless marketing strategies? Share it in the comments section. Spam will be dealt with swiftly and without malice.