Recently I spoke to a lady who wanted advice on her website copy.
As we discussed her audience and how she could help them, similar themes cropped up:
I’m running a teleseminar
I’ll be building my list
I’ll be doing lots of speaking
I want a video on my home page
She was fired up and ready to start with her marketing until we started to discuss who she wanted to reach and what their pain points were.
What questions did they have? Where did they spend time online? What groups were they part of? What did they need to know before hiring her?
The enthusiasm dipped
“It’s just for anyone who wants to run a bigger business… I really just need to get the copy done quickly so I can build my list”.
We chatted a little more before realising there wouldn’t be a fit with the content services I offer and what she felt she needed for her business.
Method = fun work. Message = boring work…
Content Marketing Danger: Is your method sexier than your message? – Tweet this bad boy!
I see this a lot when businesses start planning content marketing campaigns.
They love the idea of webinars and infographics, and teleseminars because talking to designers, setting up technology and having meetings about scheduling pieces of content feels like you’re really making progress.
But without a clear idea of:
- Who do we want to reach?
- What are their problems and questions (and when do they have them)?
- How do we answer those?
Your content-marketing pieces aren’t going to flow together and help you build an audience and engagement online.
You may see a spike of interest when you release your new materials, or launch your online video, but without dealing with the core problems of your audience, you’re not going to get sustained interest in what you have to offer.
The reason this gets overlooked is because it’s not sexy and it doesn’t always feel like you’re being ‘busy’ enough.
The method distracts from sustained success
Writing a customer profile or persona for your content marketing may not increase website visitors that day, but it will set you up for attracting more ideal buyers later on.
Writing endless questions your target buyer may have can feel like you’re covering the basics compared to playing with new technology, but it will make future blog posts and articles more useful to your audience, and more friendly for SEO
Mapping out which content subjects takes silent time and effort that can result in a mound of paperwork rather than a shiny graphic.
But doing so means you can plan a trail from your infographic to lead into a newsletter, to lead into a bite-size offer and an ongoing email newsletter dialogue with your target buyer.
There is always more excitement in the hustle and bustle of activity, and short term spikes of attention can give you a false reading that you’re on the right track.
And if you really need to make your message planning sexy…
If you want to build a solid audience over time that is engaged, loyal and receptive to your offers, you need to tackle the message first, then choose your methods for content-marketing.
And if you don’t feel that this stuff is sexy enough, feel free to wear a thong while you do it.. 😉
What do you think? Have you been distracted by the method before rather than focusing on the message? Or have you worked with a business that has? Let me know in the comments 🙂