Time is a precious commodity in the world of business. Particularly so for SMEs – organisations who may well operate with limited resources and man-power, compared to a larger enterprise. With this in mind, it is hardly surprising that the idea of launching and running a content marketing campaign can cause concerns to arise.
Even just the basics of keeping your blog up-to-date with valuable and informative posts can easily eat up hours of your time. To avoid wasting these hours, it is imperative that the endgame, that of turning your blog readers into customers, remains firmly in sight. The content you create and publish needs to be on target for generating leads, driving conversions and, ultimately, for boosting that ROI.
If you’re at the stage where turning your following of blog readers into customers is high on the agenda, take a look at our collection of top tips to help you along the way:
1. Give your audience what they want
The first step to converting readers into customers is tailoring your content to meet their needs, in a language they are comfortable with. Sounds simple, but choosing the topics your organisation specialises in, without considering whether it is something your readers need (or want) to know, is a pitfall that many trip into.
Of course, you want to demonstrate you are an authority in your chosen subject, but put yourself in the shoes of the demographic you are looking to target, before you craft your content. Are you providing solutions for the common problems they face? Are you answering common queries? Are you appealing to their interests and speak-ing in the same way they might? Draw up a profile of your target customer and use this to help direct your future blog posts.
2. Blend with the buying cycle
Plan your content to specifically target buyers in the first, crucial stage of the buying cycle – the research stage. This is the point where the potential consumer is looking to fulfil a need or solve a problem. If you create content that provides key information or answers that address this need, you can build trust with the reader, persuading them that you know what you are talking about. Consequently, if the readers have confidence in your organisation, it follows that they will continue to look to you to provide the product or service that they require.
3. Utilise testimonials
Harness the power of positive word-of-mouth by incorporating customer testimonials into your content. Research conducted by Marketing Experiments revealed that written testimonials actually increased customer conversion by 25%. Why? Because testimonials convey a sense of authenticity and reassurance. Ask real customers to contribute in their own words to prevent the tone sounding too much like a sales pitch, and encourage specific praise as opposed to general gushing about how fantastic the organisation is; let potential consumers know precisely what is so great about your business. Another top tip is to try to allay any fears within the testimonials by addressing key concerns a potential customer might have and demonstrating how your organisation overcame the issue.
4. Retarget your readers
It does not have to spell the end of the affair if your blog readers simply move on without converting – not only is it a strong possibility they may return in the future, thanks to your expertly crafted content, but you can experiment with a retargeting tool to help make this happen. Tools such as Google Adwords, ReTargeter or Perfect Audience, can effectively follow your readers with an advert to keep you fresh in their minds as they browse – research conducted by Quick Spout has found that retargeting can get you a click-through rate of 0.2% with a conversion rate of a respectable 3.58%. Not too shabby.
5. Create a sense of urgency with your CTA
The call to action needs to be strong, clear and immediate, but without being too pushy. Use phrases that encourage potential consumers to act soon in order to take advantage of your excellent service or products and utilise short sentences to pick up the pace. Offering discounts for a specific period or making it clear that stock is limited are also great ways to hurry along the buying process.
But our number one tip for converting blog readers into customers? Save your time and resources and turn to the content marketing experts for assistance.