Product-market fit is only the first step in building a loyal user base. You must also connect with your audience on an emotional level — showing them that you care about the same things they care about and making them feel like a part of something bigger. Content marketing has the ability not only to engage your customers and keep them loyal longer, but also to turn them into evangelists for your brand. Establishing a connection and creating a community will provide a solid foundation for a successful business. Here’s what you need to create content that resonates.
Define Your Goals
Before you begin the process of creating content, you need to know why you’re making it — and more importantly, if you’re making the right kind of content. Start with defining a goal and how you will measure success. Are you seeking traffic? Conversions? Sales? To reduce churn? Though your ultimate goal may be conversions and sales, content marketing can help you to set up a funnel to achieve this goal. The process might look something like this: attract readers to your blog (content), then convert them into email subscribers and nurture a relationship with them that encourages them to become paying customers.
But sales is only one positive outcome you can generate with content. Don’t forget to use content to strengthen the customer relationship and share education that will help them get more out of your product.
Once you have your goals in place, you can then determine the metrics you will use to track as you make your way toward these goals. Though you may start with measuring traffic, you’ll want to establish other key performance indicators (KPIs) to ensure that your content is bringing in the right traffic, including your target users who are most likely to purchase your apps and benefit from them. Consider tracking the following content KPIs:
- Bounce rate
- Time spent on page
- Pageviews per session
- Social sharing
- Conversion rate
Know Your Audience
The next step after you establish your content goals is to define your audience. You need to know who you are writing for in order to establish and maintain a connection with them, and that means understanding their desires, fears, goals, and dreams. The best way to do this is to create personas that can guide content creation as well as product development. Personas are fictional representations of user types or marketing segments fueled by real data. They allow you to create an effective marketing strategy that answers your audience’s most pressing questions by speaking directly to them.
The content you produce should provide value to each of your personas at each stage in the buyer’s journey. Start by writing down the questions each persona is asking at each stage in the journey. Then, consider keyword targeting for search engine optimization (SEO). Optimizing for the terms your audience is entering into search engines increases your opportunity for organic search traffic by ranking higher on search engine results pages (SERPs). This means people are more likely to see your content. And if you’ve targeted your content topics to the needs and desires of your target audience, you’ll be attracting not just any people, but people interested in the issues your product addresses.
Start with an Attention-Grabbing Headline
Once you have your topic ideas, you’re ready to start writing. Give special attention to the headline. An effective headline captures readers’ interest and encourages them to read the rest of the content. A great headline will:
- Clearly communicate what the reader will find in the piece
- Compel the person to read the content
- Speak to the reader at their stage in the buyer’s journey
- Guide the reader from the headline to the body text
- Inspire trust in readers, especially when it directly relates to the content
To create a positive user experience, headlines should also be credible. It’s important to make sure your headlines are not enticing someone to click and failing to deliver what the headline promised (also known as clickbait).
Include a Fresh Perspective
Content that resonates engages the reader with a fresh idea or new perspective. Part of your mission with content is to help differentiate your brand by demonstrating what you stand for. Effective content allows readers to see how you think about things, setting your brand apart and attracting likeminded people. Content marketing is about more than generating visibility. It’s about sharing your viewpoint, mission, values, and what you bring to the table — all while educating or entertaining your audience.
It goes without saying that for a startup to be successful, it needs to have a solid product that people want to buy. However, given the competitiveness of our global economy, that’s not all that’s needed. The answer is content that resonates, which will cut through the noise to engage your current and potential customers and create a sense of community.