Let’s talk about the fact that you need to stop only advertising, and start adding value to your customers and potential prospects out in the market.
Too many organisations out there over-emphasise their advertising without adding any real substance in their marketing. Research shows that only a small percentage of the market is actually ready and willing to purchase a product or service at any given time, so if you’re serving them up a straight-forward advertisement, there’s little-to-no value on offer. Large organisations that have the time and resources available often make this the bedrock of their marketing strategies, but there’s no requirement for massive marketing budgets whatsoever… you just need to know where to look, keep your ear to the ground and address some of the most common questions, queries and grievances around your industry and leverage these with future posts.
Today we’re going to run over some of the easiest strategies for your organisation to implement in your marketing campaigns that add value to your customers and consolidate your reputation as a trustworthy vendor. They don’t require extra resources, if anything, they’re one of the most cost effective ways of transforming your organisation’s marketing strategy from simple advertising to genuinely adding value to people’s lives.
Who is Your Target Audience?
One of the first lessons in marketing 101 is to discover who your customers are, and who your audience is out there in the cyber landscape. Social media sites offer extensive analytics when it comes to finding out exactly who is engaging with your posts, but you need to use this information and take it a step further. Create an avatar of your customers, give them a name, and brainstorm with your team what you think they’re interested in that you can leverage in future marketing campaigns.
This becomes useful when you think about what aspects of your product or service are marketable to certain customers. Different people are interested in different things, and the same applies when they’re thinking about your products. Understand what they want, and learn how your organisation can serve them.
With the next step in the process, you can truly begin to engage your target audience with content that adds value, rather than solely advertising your product or service to them.
Analyse Keyword Searches and Discover the ‘Burning Questions’ in your Industry
While searching for something on Google, I’m sure you’ve noticed a series of boxes underneath the search that are based on commonly-asked questions related to the search. These are a gold-mine when it comes to finding the most common questions, concerns and grievances are around any given search term.
Let’s say, for example, you’re marketing your services as an accountant, or a new piece of accounting software that has real-world benefits for small and medium-sized businesses. A simple search with the keywords ‘accounting software’ offers up a list of questions, based on search queries from visitors interested in the topic. This is extremely relevant information that should be used as the basis of a new, value-adding marketing campaign that will build your reputation and implicitly show that your organisation isn’t only about selling products, you’re also interested in adding value to the lives of customers, and potential customers.
From here, you use that insight for the next step.
Add Value with Posts, Videos, Blogs and Marketing Material related to search terms
What are the chances that a traditional advertisement of yours will go viral on social media? Unless you’re one of the biggest players in the game, the answer is next to nothing in terms of audience engagement and the potential of your material being shown to a wider audience. With this in mind, you should look to engage a new audience with interesting content that looks to either answer questions, address a wider issue, or present insight into something your organisation has experience with.
Those questions listed above plot out a series of potential social media posts you could put or blog post topics to explore with your organisation’s insider knowledge, or youtube videos you can film for a more multimedia approach to your marketing campaign. Businesses often talk about the importance of making changes in-line with customer demands and requirements, so why miss out on a prime opportunity to make important changes to your marketing strategy.
Even if these posts don’t necessarily go ‘viral’, you’re likely to see your search engine optimisation – SEO – score increase, which results in more traffic to your website, as well as taking the stress out of the marketing direction considering you’ve essentially crowd-funded ideas for your campaign.
In closing, it’s worth noting that these actions are incredibly simple, yet incredibly important to an organisation’s marketing strategy. Even if taking these steps doesn’t translate into a rise in sales, you’ve increased your organisation’s standing in the market as a brand that is proactive about its customers and addressing problems they’re having.
At times, building trust in the marketplace is more important than signing customers, so don’t underestimate the importance of adding value to your customers, rather than just advertising to them.
Thanks for your time, I’ll see you in the next post.
Kobi Simmat, Director & CEO of the Best Practice Group