Get Specific – Targeting Content To Attract Better Clients
Don’t check your pockets, the content marketing keys aren’t there
When it comes to the keys to content marketing, it’s best to ask your customers, as they are the ones who know best.
They unlock the content they want to engage, with Google and social media curating customer’s preferences.
And it’s a problem for small business marketers to break through this wall.
Relevance in content marketing is what businesses have to seek now. Relevance refers to content that’s ultra-specific, personalised and shrewdly targeted to customers.
The term ‘content targeting’ — where keywords and phrases are ‘hired’ to provide small ads on page results that click through to landing pages for conversions — was coined for paid ads like Google Adwords campaigns.
This term has broadened to the wider organic search because of SEO’s evolution.
But while the outcome is better for users, it’s more of a problem for Small to Medium sized Business.
Fifty-eight percent of business marketers want a better understanding of what content is effective and what isn’t. In fact, sixty-eight percent (68%) are employing search engine marketing (SEM) as a primary tool for content marketing and are increasing their marketing budgets to cover this area.
The concern is promoting content in the most engaging way possible but lacking confidence in its success — or worse, hoping for blind luck to strike with their market.
It boils down to focus and lots of hard work on your content creation, which means more time and resources spent.
Bigger businesses may have a team to deal with this, but his is less likely for mid-sized businesses.
And for small business? Another skill set to add to your toolbox: You need to burrow down and uncover the topics to which your target customer will be attracted. Then, apply specificity and your unique voice to your content.
Where to start?
Customer Personas — Some question if they’re needed at all. I’m not one of them. Developing detailed personas of the people you want to work with sharpens your focus.
Knowing the who, what, where, why and how of your client is instrumental in creating targeted content.
Let’s take Chris, a mid-40s business professional with a young family looking to get into better shape. He finishes long hours at work and heads home to a partner and young kids, having slowly become overweight through convenience and exhaustion.
Chris wants to join a gym but has issues with flexible hours, lock-in contracts and convenience. The option for him has to fit into the time he can set aside, namely lunchtime. He has a small window of opportunity to do this.
This persona, from a gym franchisee client with whom I worked, represented a target customer the franchisee wanted as a member.
She wanted to show the benefits of her gym: convenience (multiple gym locations in the Sydney CBD and Inner West area), 24-hour access and no long-term contracts.
The gym ticked the initial boxes, and the written copy highlighted the range of services like personal training and workout classes the gym had.
Personas give you a human representation you can visualize.
I originally created three other personas — one male, two females — that were similar in professional roles but different in personal circumstances.
The key benefits of flexibility, convenience and no lock-in contracts were consistent throughout the website content, and the niche blog posts and articles on good training were tailored for each customer.
Personas shouldn’t be set in stone either but rather refined through analytics, research and qualitative data monitoring.
The response or results from your content targeting can help you pivot and change if your market likes one thing over another.
Topics (And Your Approach)
Through researching your market, asking questions, checking through forums and online communities and listening to which topics keep bubbling up, you can pick the ones to which you can bring a fresh perspective, being specific with your approach.
If you target homeowners looking to renovate their properties in Adelaide, South Australia, the term ‘home renovations Adelaide’ is highly competitive and dominated by larger companies with higher domain authority in the search results.
But by taking a more long-tail approach to an issue they want answers to — say, for example, the ‘10 effective ways to get your renovation plans approved in Adelaide’ — the topic is nichey and relevant to those homeowners.
Good headlines are crucial here. Making a user click through and convert can result in how this piece of writing real estate performs.
The ability to employ some nice A/B testing of your headlines, to see what draws more traffic and better leads, helps you develop headlines with better conversions.
Which platforms do your customers use to access information? How can you deliver your content to them in the right fashion? What actions should they take when they receive it?
The distribution research will bring up the application on which your content must appear, whether it’s a tweet through Twitter, a post shared through a Facebook page or an email to subscribers.
This is the targeted delivery of your targeted content, which should work in unison.
As I mentioned before, the type of data you can obtain from analytics services today is better than ever.
Targeting content doesn’t deliver results instantly; rather, results come over the medium term (months after) and with consistency.
I have prospects contacting me well after my posts have been published just by being nichey on topics. Prospects that you pick up further down the sales cycle are better with conversion rates as well.
I talked about the content marketing keys before. The customers are in control of them now, but the ball’s in your court to provide the relevant information they want.
Building the customised door to attract customers to unlock happens through specificity and your unique approach to topics.
How specific is your content marketing? Do you develop personas, and what are your experiences in using them? Where do you think personalisation in content will take us?
If you are still crunched, with no time or staff to deal with your content targeting – contact me now – and we’ll create your success in content.