Want to Attract Your Ideal Clients Online Without Advertising? Create an Effective Content Marketing Strategy

I Googled, “best ways to balance my hormones naturally” and got 131 million search results within .68 seconds. WOW! I am continually amazed by the amount of information on the internet.

Let’s say you are a business owner offering holistic health & wellness services. You are passionate about helping people solve their problems by sharing tools that have been life changing for you. You want to attract and connect with more people who will resonate with your business and offerings, but…

  • You don’t have thousands of dollars to spend on Google Adwords or other paid-search strategies.

  • You don’t want to come off as too sales-y.

  • You don’t want to use every social media platform and marketing channel under the sun.

Is it possible to stand out in today’s saturated digital world, and do so with authenticity and ease?

Despite the internet hosting hundreds of millions of websites, Facebook groups and Instagram accounts, the answer is...YES. But you can’t just simply put content out there and expect a return. You need an intentional Content Marketing Strategy to effectively grow your online presence organically.

88% of consumers conduct online research before making a purchase. Businesses need to deliver high-value, optimized content to get their attention.

A Content Marketing Strategy allows you to deliver high-value content to the right people at the right time.

THE RESULT? People build an understanding of your business, begin to trust you, and can decide if you are the one that can solve their problems. Let’s look at some statistics:

  • 61% of consumers say they feel better about a company that delivers custom content and are more likely to buy from that company.

  • People spend more than 50% of their time online looking at content.

  • 70% of consumers prefer getting to know a company via articles rather than ads.

Most business owners know the importance of their online presence and communications via blogging, social media and email. What many of them lack is a strategic plan to actually drive website traffic, increase sales, and support their other business goals.

There is way too much content already online to spend your time and money marketing without a thoughtful strategy leading the way.

4 Steps to Creating an Effective Content Marketing Strategy

  1. Know Who You Are Talking To

    Any strategic marketing plan starts with your ideal client in mind. What are their pain points, values, and goals? What is the dialogue going on in their head? What messages bring them comfort? What common objections do they have about your services?

    I know how difficult it is to narrow down your target market. Your businesses satisfies many different needs. You are worried about excluding potential clients by choosing just one. I totally get it!

    What I have found helpful is to actually create one to three Ideal Client Avatars. They are “avatars” because you can imagine them as people—give them names, visualize them moving through their day, and put yourself in their shoes as you are preparing to write content for them.

  2. Understand the Problem Solving Process

    People turn to the internet to find solutions to their problems. In order for your content to get seen and capture the attention of the appropriate people, it’s important to plan your content with the problem solving process in mind: AWARENESS > EVALUATION > DECISION

    Let’s refer to my Google search example: “best ways to naturally balance my hormones”.

    AWARENESS > Before I knew I needed to balance my hormones, I was only aware of my symptoms. I knew I had a need but I wasn’t quite sure if it was worth exploring or what the symptoms were really caused by. I didn’t know quite what I needed, but I knew my pain points.

    Content written for the AWARENESS phase should be educational, demonstrate expertise and focus on the pain points of your target market.

    EVALUATION > After determining that my symptoms were caused by a hormonal imbalance, I turned to Google to identify specific solutions. I was gathering and evaluating all of my options, looking for the most credible leaders in their industries. At this point, I was not in the buying mindset just yet. I simply wanted to educate myself and understand all the potential solutions.

    Content written for the EVALUATION phase should be more specific to your offerings, add a ton of value, and illustrate your expertise.

    DECISION > Now that I felt good knowing my options, I wanted to narrow them down by seeking specific information like pricing, trials, what to expect, etc. I was also considering which brands I felt more of a resonance with.

    Content written for the DECISION phase should make it easy for someone to say YES to your offerings. Make it very clear what they will expect and address any concerns they may have.

  3. Plan Your Content

    Plan your content in a way that speaks to each of your ideal client avatars at each phase of the problem solving process. A one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work. Successful content marketing will intentionally develop and nurture a relationship between your business and your target market.

    After you have outlined the content you will share, the next step is determining how you will package that content: blog posts, eBook, checklist, Q&A, webinar, video, etc.

    Different types of content are effective for different phases of the problem solving process. For example, to move someone from the AWARENESS phase to the EVALUATION phase, at the end of your educational blog post, you might encourage them to download a guide with more in-depth information on that topic. Once they submit their email address and download the guide, you might follow up with an email a few days later with more specific information about your offerings (the DECISION phase). Plan your content accordingly in order to encourage them along the problem solving process.

  4. Optimize Your Content

    Optimizing your content consists of many different activities, and it also looks slightly different depending on what type of content it is. Essentially, optimized content allows the right people to find your content, easily consume it, and take the next step to getting to know your offerings better.

    To optimize a blog posts, here are some questions you can ask yourself:

    • Do you focus on the problems of your target market and offer solutions?

    • Is the title compelling, peak interest, and accurately describe what the article is about?

    • Is your content easy to read or scan for the highlights?

    • Do you use keywords that your target market is using in Google searches?

    • Do you have a call-to-action?

    • Is your content unique and of high value?

    • Are you sticking to a schedule and posting regularly?

Can You Make A Greater Impact?

Next time you sit down to think about the content you are putting out for you business (social media posts, blogs, email communications, videos, webinars, or downloadable resources), ask yourself:

  • Am I making an impact on the lives of my target market online?

  • Am I seeing an increase in traffic to my website?

  • Are more people calling and emailing me to take advantage of my offerings?

If not, there is an opportunity to enhance your approach to creating valuable content to your target market, attracting and connecting with the right people at the right time, and helping them solve their problems.

To learn more about how I work with clients on a Content Marketing Strategy, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

*Source: United States B2C Ecommerce Country Report 2017