The world is swimming in an abundance of content and information. Marketers and business owners alike are ever struggling in a growing battle for customer attention. The era of one-way, brand-directed mass communication is over. And yet most of the messages we receive on a daily basis are firmly ingrained in those good ’ol days. Marketing tactics have become less and less effective, with businesses responding by creating more and more promotional content that no one wants, no one likes, and no one responds to. As each piece lands on their website, blog, and social media streams, they send out the same old recurring message to their audience: that they only care about themselves. They have become masters of telling you “who we are” and “what we do.” They try to convince you of how smart they are and the problems their company solves.
The real problem is that no one cares. Customers are not listening, reading, or acting on this content. However, this does not register. They fail to see the problem and therefore their focus shifts to email open rates, banner click-through rates, calls-to-action responses, and telephone contact rates, never considering the real problem.
In working with numerous business owners over the years, many believed they had unique problems and challenges. They really didn’t. It was the same with them as it is with our own company. It is this:
Your customers don’t care about you, your services, or your products. They care about themselves. I know, most of us in business feel we have something really wonderful and special to offer people. We really don’t
– at least not anything that your customer can’t probably find elsewhere. If that is true, how do we get customers to pay attention to us, to trust us, and to ultimately buy from us and want to keep coming back for more?
In order to sell more, we need to market our products and services less and focus more on our customers. This approach will make you think differently about marketing and then act differently about how you go to market. Remember, to thrive in today’s new economy, you must accept the fact that you have to market differently, to not only survive but to win.
Chad Brooks of ADS, a leader in automotive marketing and a customer of AscendWorks spoke candidly regarding this approach. Chad said, “I spoke with several of my customers this week who all made a special effort to mention how much they liked the content they had been receiving from me each week.”The secret … is really no secret at all but very hard work that delivers content the customer wants. When you apply this to your content strategy your customer pays attention, trust grows, and they buy. To achieve this for Chad we had to develop a new business model around content creation and distribution. Chad is a believer! He has seen trust develop as well as an eagerness from his customers to hear from him, not to mention an increase in qualified leads and sales.
What if more businesses did this type of activity, focusing not on their products in marketing, but on the informational needs of their target customer first?
Even while the idea of content marketing is now a recognized term, most business owners have no content marketing strategy playbook to do this properly in order to make it work for their business. There is a reason for this and next week I will focus on exactly what is content marketing and how to make it work in your business.
If you want to discuss a content marketing strategy for your business complete the Get Started area below.