We’ve spoken about Content Marketing fundamentals before. But when this strategy is implemented properly it will probably take a handful of years to see the results you’re planning. Content marketing is supposed to grow your reputation over a long period of time, and this will result in attracting the right types of clients to you. This is different to most sales strategies where the brand reaches out to the customer, by cold calling, cold emails or marketing campaigns, with Content Marketing you’re showing off who you are and what you do hoping it will resonate with the right audience and that will lead potential clients to reach out to you.
Because there’s no call to action, no hard sell, sometimes not even a soft sell in content marketing for audiences to trust the brand, it does take time. But what if you don’t have that precious resource available? What do you do if you don’t have time. Well, you combine a traditional sales approach with your Content Marketing, creating a type of hybrid of the two.
Remember, Content Marketing is all about giving your audience value. Taking your passion and your knowledge about your brand and your industry and sharing that in different ways be it podcasts, articles or tutorials. It’s usually not transactional, meaning your audience doesn’t need to pay for it – there is no give and get, only give – you’re giving value. This is why it takes as long as it does to build that relationship. To speed up the process a bit let’s put the idea of the hybrid Content Marketing/Traditional Sales methods into practice by changing one small thing. Ask your audience to self-identify.
Making this small and simple adjustment to your Content Marketing will help you see better results. It’s not as assertive as a traditional call to action, but if the audience are interested in your content, they’ve consumed it and liked it you just need to give them a subtle nudge in your direction.
We do this by asking the audience to engage. We tell them that they can know more if they leave a SPECIFIC comment. Simply saying “COMMENT BELOW” is not enough. To put this Hybrid strategy into practice the audience must be willing to work a bit, so you need to tell them exactly what to comment in order to unlock further value. It’s the “magic word” or the “secret password” effect. Tell them they can have more and then tell them how to ask for it. Giving this instruction and then seeing who follows it can give you immediate feedback that’s a bit more valuable, rather than waiting for clients to reach out when they need you.
This is Attraction Marketing. When you use Content Marketing to get your audience to give you permission to use traditional sales methods with them – like sending an email or asking to set up a meeting. Woven into the content is the asking of people to volunteer to participate in your ongoing marketing campaign by encouraging them to interact with your content, and each time they do so, they get something a little more valuable in return for that engagement. The most important thing about Attraction Marketing is having that exclusive content available for your customers when they’ve identified themselves as interested in learning more. After you’ve given them a sample of how you can help them meet their needs, and they’ve given you permission to reach out to them – you must be able to follow through and continue giving them value. Attraction Marketing uses Content Marketing to make a promise, and then traditional sales methods like a strong reputation and trust in the brand, to deliver on that promise.