If you don’t love your customer, someone else will.
The words and actions you engage visitors with can show your love, yet there is something even more important you can get them to do, to support and guide them.
Let’s apply love to your content marketing strategy, because it’s less about the content today, and more about the engagement and participation of your audience, getting you noticed in the sea of content shared every day.
What’s Your Farmville Water?
I ask that of my coaching clients today, because every day millions of people still come back to Farmville to basically get water for their virtual plants. They LOVE to do this, so much so that it has become a habit.
Love creates habits, repeat visits, and sharing – especially when you give them something to do.
Why would someone return to your site, Facebook page, Twitter stream, etc.?
How do you show love to your audience so it is content marketing?
- Give them some love and recognition in this world driven by social and mobile by designing your content first based on actions they can take with it. You and your audience BOTH recognize those who take action; that validation of effort is huge in any marketing today.
Make it fun, personal, and deliver real value – this is not about hiring somebody at Amazon MTurk to write a blog post for $5.
It’s about creating less content that creates more activity, because in a sea of content, they drown after awhile unless they are given something to do.
- Why would someone share your post, or even better take a few actions you outline and share it with others?
Case Study: Create a Game Without End
True games have a beginning, middle, and an end, with different levels. That’s way too complex for those running a business. You don’t have the budget or time to do this, but you can get your audience to do most of the work and measure your success by their activity.
Anything you do to help your customer solve the problem is part of the “Game”, something they engage in and play with, so make it a game and don’t give it a deadline. If it’s diets, then it’s about losing weight obviously; building a business is about gaining revenue and cash flow; investing money is about seeing a long time return.
What do ALL of these have in common? From diets to investing, they are all continual, games that never end. People play them every day, so why don’t you incite this activity with your content?
For example, small businesses have to gain search positioning, and anyone in the business will tell you this is a game without end.
- Play it up that way in your content, showing what you are doing, and/or a case study, and invite others to participate and report back.
- Each month you connect them to the game, even more frequently if you have an interested audience.
- People learn more by doing, and their participation with your content is key to getting the word to spread.
- Turn your guest blog posts into hosted “games”, tying into an overall approach to content that is continual, updated, and based on experience, not just tactics and tips.
Imagine if your guest post is part of an overall objective, instead of a random article basically written just to get Google link juice!
It’s hard enough getting their attention, but by being remembered, you start driving repeat visits based on knowing you, not just randomly clicking on another vague article about 6 Ways to Do XXX!
- Design all your content around the audience’s participation, knowing that maybe 20% of your audience will participate.
- Those 20% or so are what pushes your content beyond just consumption, into participation. And it doesn’t have to make you or them work hard.
- The best quality content doesn’t monetize; the cost and time spent creating it rarely returns revenue to the business, with the exception of those who are building a following.
Still, followings do not translate into revenue. That’s why it is so critical to consider how your audience can participate, which leads them to come back and register for what your business has to offer.
1. Take your content and find an action your audience can take. Not just a share or a comment, that’s limited in scope, but something they can “do” with your content.
The more people “do”, the more they remember and refer you.
2. Keep it simple and test participation; what about your content can reward people, give them Status, for trying it out?
3. Remember that the nature of the audience highly influences their activity. For example, I’ve seen precious metal retailers go on Facebook and pitch how the US economy is falling apart, as a way to trigger purchases.
On Facebook, that reads like a conspiracy theory. Meanwhile, competitors are using Facebook as a place to introduce people to investing in gold, silver, and other precious metals; they are making it familiar and friendly.
Saving money can be an ongoing game without end; predicting the end of the world is a game, but not one that leads to purchases in the precious metals market.
4. You can’t just post content and slap ads around it, you have to develop content that encourages a small percentage to do something, things that don’t make you work, but helps them spread your word because what they do delivers value – first and foremost personal value, which leads to value for your business.
Instead of trying to trigger them to stop what they are doing in social, use a little love and a “game” to get them coming back again and again.
It’s so simple it’s hard to believe so few are doing it.
Yes, I am inviting you to comment here, or on Facebook, and let me know questions about your game, your content marketing strategy, and I’ll share how to build your marketing funnel next.
I love this game and have since 1991 when I began “online”; what’s your game and how can I help you?