While marketing copy should be useful and informative, it can still be used as an effective tool to sell more. Providing value to your customers is always a solid strategy for strengthening your business.
Make sure your marketing is focused on helping you achieve your business goals. Here are some strategies to help.
How to Sell More With Your Marketing Content
Follow Your Marketing Strategy –Have you considered the best ways to reach your ideal customer base? Developing and following a marketing plan can help you stay focused on the future, setting and exceeding your marketing and sales goals for the future. Plan out the number of blogs you intend to write, and where you intend to publish them.
Plan out the other channels you are looking to use to spread the word about your business. In an insanely distractive world, it’s a good idea to remain intentional and keep the bigger picture in mind as you are tempted to tinker with the newest blogs, websites and social media outlets. Keep track of where you receive the most traffic, and the most leads, and do more of that.
Reuse Your Blog Posts – Your blog posts don’t have to enter a world of darkness after they have made the social media promotions round exactly one time. Bring paper copies of the ones that answer frequent customer questions as you speak to people in person. With sites like Create Space, it is more feasible to compile them in book form than ever before. You can also schedule older (but successful) posts on your social media channels to keep providing value.
You can concentrate ahead of time on writing “evergreen” content. This is simply content that always remains useful, and contains no time element. For example, I have the date feature on my blog turned off. I do this because I don’t want someone to simply look at the date and think that any writing advice or marketing advice might not be useful because it’s more than a few weeks old.
Perfect Your Headlines – Your headline is the single biggest determining factor on whether someone who comes across your content will read it or not. So read up on the tips for creating a compelling headline. Learn how to perfect your word choice and make an enticing promise in the fewest words possible. Study the websites that are the best at enticing people to click. Your headline is what generates interest. Without that, all your other efforts are lost.
Post in the Right Places – Just because everyone under the sun is on Facebook, doesn’t mean that’s where they will automatically turn for a specialized B2B product. It might be the right site for you to market your business. It might not. Try different social media sites, and experiment with what drives the most traffic to your website.
What are the best general information websites within your industry? Look for ways to write guest posts for them. Read and provide thoughtful comments on their other published materials. Thoughtfully participate in the industry conversations that are taking place in other websites around you. It does wonders for your visibility.
Focus on Your Customer – A lot of the marketing copy out there really isn’t focused on the customer at all. It is another repackaging of the sales message, and therefore falls flat. Think about it…would you hop on the computer to read or view hours worth of hard-sell advertising copy? Doubtful. The TV commercials and newspaper advertising of the past dealt with an already captive audience. Consumers find your online marketing content on their own accord. If you want to sell more, you have to persuade them to read your content.
Speak in Benefits – One of the best ways to speak the same language as your customer, is to convey the benefits of your product or service. A V8 engine on a car is a feature. Driving 0-60 faster than any other car you’ve ever owned is a benefit. Readers want know how your industry, products or services can benefit them.
Write Something You Would Read – Step out of your own shoes for a minute. Really think about what your reader might be looking for. What are some of the common questions potential customers in your industry might have? What is some of the information everyone should know about your industry? The better your content meets reader needs, the stronger the connection you’ll have.
You can use the Google Keyword Planner to find out what people are searching for. You can think back to the common questions potential customers ask in person, for a larger built in audience. You can also ask your readers and customers what kind of content they are looking for.
Teach Instead of Selling – Your blogs and other “soft” marketing materials are not the place to offer a hard sell. Your reader has a problem. If that problem is not addressed (with you positioned as the solution), they’ll likely lose interest. Giving your readers a strong catalog of useful information positions you as the expert. When your readers determine they no longer want to take on a project themselves, who do you think they’ll reach out to? The teacher.
Keep Current – There is no shortage of information about your industry online. Your readers are faced with a barrage of choices, sometimes to the point that making a decision is overwhelming. Keeping current on the latest technologies, trends or products only helps your efforts as industry expert. It keeps you positioned as the knowledgeable option.
Push Your Customers for Reviews or Testimonials – Social proof is a significant factor in online selling. You can talk until you’re blue in the face about how great your business is. The second a customer is willing to do the talking, you will sell more, because people are more apt to listen.
Who are the recent happy customers? Who are the people who made your day with kind words? Ask them to write you a LinkedIn recommendation, or a testimonial for your website. If you sell a product, ask for a review.
People don’t want to be sold to, and that is even more true online. But if you can relate to people on a human level, they will start to trust you, and you can build relationships. Some additional steps you can take to help you sell more include:
- Perfect your calls to action, and learn how to make an ask.
- Tell better stories.
- Hire a marketing writer to help you with your content.
The best advice I can give would be to select one (or more) of the above listed strategies, and begin the work on improving your content. You can leverage your marketing content to sell more, by providing the right value – even without the hard sell.