Lets be honest, most businesses face one problem – Trust. Most of the small businesses out there can’t get masses to trust them let alone make enough sales to sustain a profitable business. In order for people to buy your products and services, they need to trust your business, your brand. You need to be convincing enough that you can solve their problems in the most cost effective way as possible, you need to make them believe that they actually need your product.
Its certainly not easy but its not impossible as well. What if there was a way or a tool or method which could help you in gaining their trust with minimal investment, wouldn’t that be fantastic?
Ofcourse I am not talking about TV or media endorsements or a costly PPC campaign, they have their own place and no doubt can be really powerful but they aren’t worth the risk especially for small businesses and startups who are bootstrapping.
What I am talking about is a really powerful tool which everyone can have at their disposal, that tool is known as Content Marketing. A right content marketing strategy can not only garner attention and build trust but also engage prospective customers and turn them into loyal customers year in year out.
In this piece, we will cover powerful strategies which businesses can incorporate in their content marketing campaign:
1) Kickass Eye Catchy Titles
Even the most compelling content can go unnoticed if you don’t have eye catchy titles. With so much content available on Internet, you really need to have a title that stands apart from the rest.
Websites such as Upworthy, BuzzFeed and ViralNova have made a business worth millions out of creating titles which users can’t help but only click. Some of these titles include phrases like “Ultimate Guide to ”, “_ Things You Wouldn’t Imagine even in the worst of your nightmares”, “__ Never Heard Before Secrets About That Will Blow Your Mind”. You get the idea right? Some of these titles can be borderline click baiting but the content is equally good and usually delivers so usually these types of articles get massive social shares on Facebook and Twitter.
Now sometimes it can hard to create such titles and at the same time keep it relevant to your business so you have another powerful weapon in your hands i.e. Lists. What you can do is break down your content piece into various sections. Articles like “7 Best Tips For” or “4 Most Effective Strategies” (I cheated my own title there 😉 ) are also really popular and get the users hooked quite easily.
To be very honest, titles are everything, I will even go on a limb and say they are even more important than the actual content so if you can write good titles or get someone to do it for you, half of your job is done.
2) Pleasing Pictures and Images to Complement Compelling Content
Lets face it. No one likes to read walls of content without images. Ok I do read ZenHabits and Seth Godin sometimes since they are masterpieces but that’s about it. Today’s ADHD generation can’t keep their attention span on a particular webpage for more than 5-10 seconds (probably even less). So along with a catchy title and compelling content, visually appealing images are of utmost importance and go a long way in keeping the users engaged on your webpage. Typically one image after every 200-300 words is suffice and does the job. You can either opt to use free Flickr Creative Commons images or stock images from websites like iStockPhoto, Dreamstime etc. I recommend the latter since these images are very high quality and look more professional as well as more appealing.
3) Social Media is Really Important, Don’t Neglect It
No one can deny the power of social media. I don’t have the numbers but I predict atleast 80-90 percent of the internet users must have made a account on a certain social networking site sometime or the other whether its MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest. A large part of internet users are daily users of social networking channels so it would be a huge mistake to not leverage this and incorporate it in your content marketing campaign. So share your content and ask your friends to share it as well (don’t annoy them though, just ask them politely once). If possible, even consider spending few bucks (nothing big really, even 10-20$ would do) on a sponsored story on these sites. Due to the viral nature of social networking sites, your content can explode and get viral if done correctly.
4) Leveraging Existing Customers to Gain New Customers
The general consensus is Word of Mouth is the biggest and most powerful form of promotional marketing. Why do even scammy MLM programs get so popular? Same reason – Word of Mouth.
You can offer incentives or rewards or even special discounts to your current loyal customers if they give you a referral to their friends and relatives or anyone else for that matter. This can quickly add up and lead to an increase in number of your customers. These customers also tend to stick with you for a longer time than normal ones which you acquire with your marketing efforts. Aside from this, real testimonials from your satisfied clients can also prove to be quite instrumental in increasing your customer base.
That’s it for now, if you have any more strategies which you would like to share with us, kindly mention them below in comments.