When you plan your content marketing strategy, you’ll need to think a lot about your organization. You must have a clear understanding of your product, a realistic assessment of your assets and strengths, and a beeline toward your business goals. All those things inform your strategy. Your writer or blogger needs to think about something else: your customers, and what your customers care about.
It’s a common mistake: having thought a lot about your company, you decide to produce content about your company.
- the awards you’ve won
- your vision
- your story
- your credentials
- your team
- your board of directors
These all sound like good things, right? These are the qualifications that will cause people to hire your company and buy your products — right?
Your visitors don’t care that much about you
You can certainly write about all the things on that list. But only a small percentage of people coming to your website are actually looking for information about you and your organization. Chances are good that you could put everything on that list above into your About Us page or section, where people checking your qualifications will be able to find it easily, and be finished.
Say you’re selling personal security devices. Your target customer is the guy shown in the photo above. He’s married, with two kids, he likes to travel, he keeps up with the news, and he’s been trying to work out more. Here are some things he’ll probably find interesting as he’s thinking about personal security devices:
- Comparisons of wearable alarms for women, since he’s thinking about buying one for his wife
- The coolest personal hotel security options
- Corporate travel safety tips
- How to keep someone from getting into your hotel room
- Safety tips for traveling with kids
- Security issues for AirBnBs
- Keeping your gear safe in the gym, or in a hotel gym
All of these topics can easily and naturally include information about personal safety devices. Having found a couple of these article via search, he’s likely to come back to your website — especially when he’s ready to buy.
Learn what your customers care about
There are sources of information that can help you identify your visitors’ interests.
Google Analytics has a report on Interests in the Demographics area of the Audience report. Here you can see the kinds of things your current visitors search for online. Often, you’ll find that your visitors have a wide range of interests. If you see a profile like the one below at your website where you see personal security devices, you should consider sharing recipes or writing about how to keep cameras secure.
Google Trends shows generally what people are searching for. You can get more specific information by inputting topics and geographic areas.
You can also use internal data. What do customers ask you and your staff? What kinds of searches bring people to your website? What related posts do people click on?
This information can be gathered in Google Analytics, but also with other types of analytics such as Share This or Related Posts data.
You can even ask your visitors. Use a plugin like WP-Polls and offer visitors a choice of topics. This works well only if you have a fairly large amount of traffic and a chatty group.
The bottom line
Your editorial calendar should include a good variety of topics, and they should be topics your customers care about. Content marketing is not promotional at its heart, so don’t think of your web content as chance to tell people about your company. Think of it as a chance to establish your website as a source of useful and entertaining content… on subjects your customers care about.