1. Your content is lacking or is too sales-y
This may not be self-serving right about now, but the written word is not for everyone. You’ve got to build visual content on a multitude of platforms to extend your reach into your target market. In this modern age of business, consumers have the power as they can research, review, and select their exact desires from a list of strong competitors.
Which has created a smaller and smaller funnel for profit and success. It is time to get on board and join the new revolution into consumer marketing backed my smart content with a soft sell and strong story. The direct, sales approach doesn’t work well with a lead or prospect ready to buy your product — or most times they might not even be ready to buy yet, but are looking for more information to solve the problem.
What kind of content resonates best? Well, here’s the thing — everyone’s different. Some like podcasts, others mobile apps. Some watch videos, others look at photo galleries. It’s important though, whatever the medium, that the content has value and builds trust with consumers because that is the sale you’re interested in. Then, when the time is right your company is in the position to get the conversion because you were smart, patient, and put yourself in the customer’s shoes on what they wanted. Below are some steps to guide you through high quality content for driving traffic to your site/product.
2. You’ve got an audience, but not the right audience
We’ve all been there at some point. You spend all your time creating a great website, premium content, and traffic is rolling in. Good news, right? Well, not so fast…
A deeper dissection into the website analytics show that your audience is leaving rather quickly with very little conversions. Put simply, you haven’t found the right audience for your product/service. And here’s a few quick tips on how to easily do this:
- SEO (search engine optimization) | The popular term SEO relates to the tools to bring in traffic organically. These means through consistent keywords, copy, cross linking and more. However, it’s important to understand that the nature of SEO has changed and you should not focus on marketing to search engines, but rather the consumer. What is called ‘white hat SEO’ refers to focusing on genuine processes that don’t trick search engines by using their algorithms against them.
- SEM (search engine marketing) | Didn’t realize there was more after SEO? Well, SEM is the parent of search engine and includes the organic focus of SEO as well as paid search advertising. Paid search is a great, cost-effective tool for your company to increase brand awareness and fight organic traffic of competitors on similar offerings.
- Google AdWords | The Google platform is a great way to start out into the world of online advertising. It’s simple, adjustable, and easy to use for a business owner. However, if stressing on these metrics and tools isn’t your cup of tea, then find a expert marketer to understand the fluidity between content and paid & organic incoming traffic.
- SMM (social media marketing) | Lastly, SMM brings social media into the fold. It’s had its fair share of arguments, but I think we all know the social platforms are here to stay. And it’s not enough to just have a company page on a few sites. No, you must understand the unique customer touchpoints you can create on their personal turf. It’s best to use innovative content (quick and humorous work best) and consistently interact with consumers in new ways.
3. Marketing is a science and you’re not measuring results
The marketing industry could be seen as being folded in with those creative folks, however, there is a strong connection to analytics, mathematics, and big data.
And the more successful your company gets, the larger (and scarier) the data becomes so it’s essential to get your processes nailed down right away. You should be spending at least an hour a week researching consumer data from all possible sources including promotional ads, website traffic, sales, and other metrics. From here, you are able to track the past so that future consumer actions are better predicted. Looking at the analytics of your website can be a great place to start and Google Analytics is once again a user-friendly tool.
Diving more into that tool, you can segment visitor demographics, website patterns, and even track things like product revenue or video views. This is also a great place to mention A/B testing as this data will then drive further tweaks and revisions to your platforms. And with A/B testing, you have the great ability to see what consumers prefer — you’d be surprised how many times you are wrong in guessing what they want!
4. Your value proposition isn’t aligned properly yet
Let’s take a step back for a bit to a place I believe most businesses have never ventured. Don’t worry, it’s nothing scary like a high school career fair or anything. Think back to the start of your business or possibly to the start of year. What I’m referring to is the concrete document of a marketing plan.
And before you finish my blog for me with “Yes, we’ve had one of those for years.”, let’s take a look at the content inside. Most marketing plans get into some detail, but miss over key areas that take them into the customers’ minds. There are two key areas that I believe are something of constant focus for a strategy to be properly aligned.
- Buyer personas | You may know these personas as ‘Saver Sally’ or ‘Hipster Harry’, but they have evolved quite a bit into new-age marketing. It’s a strong tool for companies to understand who their customers are and who they want their customers to be — a lot of times those two don’t match. In addition, it is a tool that can complement the analysis of every business decision. Think of every landing page, social post, paid search ad, and understand completely what customers you are targeting and then analyze it after to revise the actionables and past data of your personas.
- Goals/conversions | This is a great tool for website analytics and SEM work. But many clients can’t provide me with proper goals or conversions that they want to see increasing at a constant rate. This might be one of the most alarming facts because a few simple conversion goals — rather than make more profit — can separate the good from the great. So take a step back and think of general goals, then focus those goals down to how you accomplish them through your marketing.
5. You’re not keeping up with the “Joneses”
In the evolution of modern business in the 21st century, the necessary tools to be successful have exponentially compounded to create much more work for the average business owner. It’s essential to understand where your time is best suited and where other third party vendors will be better equipped to take over certain processes, like marketing.
To get the most bang for your buck, try and find a small agency that has their hands in a multitude of different creative skills. That way, the world of content, analytics, marketing, social media, and strategy positioning can be taken care of under the same roof. And by doing that, you will in time be able to keep up with the best of your competitors.