If you have embraced the concept of content marketing instead of or in addition to traditional marketing — and there are many reasons you should — it’s important to understand the key difference between the two: engaging vs. selling. As the expert in digital marketing, our clients turn to us for expert assistance with their content marketing initiatives, we encourage them to take a closer look at their outbound communications.
Provide Insights not Invites
There is still a place for traditional marketing, of course. And by that, we mean tactics that invite prospects to see that your offerings are the best fit for them. However, consumers today are increasingly more inclined to respond to content marketing. There, the focus is on providing insights and nurturing prospects with a steady stream of interesting and informative content in order to ultimately make a sale.
With content marketing (also called inbound marketing), most experts agree that you should keep overtly “salesy” pitches to a minimum. People today are tired of being sold to and instead want to be collaborated with. Many say that your sales pitches should make up no more than 50 percent of your outbound communications. And some organizations achieve tremendous success with a number far lower than that.
Companies new to content marketing will frequently ask, “If we’re not pitching our products and services, what can we talk about?” Good question! One of the keys to inbound marketing is learning to look at your offerings and your operations differently. As you develop a wider and deeper perspective, you’ll see that there is a great deal of helpful information and resources you can share with your target audience, including:
- Checklists, forms, etc. Any type of tool or “template” that your prospects can use to do their job better or make their life easier will be much appreciated. For example, if your organization provides mental health services, a short list of the symptoms of a particular condition can be helpful for someone concerned about a loved one.
- Educational material. Has there been an advance in technology associated with your industry? Research it and digest it. Then provide your prospects with a clear and concise explanation of what it is and how it works.
- Surveys. Rather than telling people about your products, ask them about their needs. It’s a great way to show that you are interested in helping them. Being a “good listener” is crucial in any kind of relationship — business or otherwise.
- Humor. Of course, you don’t want to go overboard with this kind of material. But, your target audience will appreciate it if you occasionally share a tasteful, funny piece. And doing so helps to humanize your organization.
As you can see, none of the items above are salesy. Consequently, they will all be welcomed by your prospects and help strengthen your relationship with them. Plus, when you make the tactical decision to reach out with a true sales piece, your trusting and well-informed audience will be much more willing to consume that content.
Get Help with Digital Marketing!
When it comes to digital marketing, clients have trusted A-Train Marketing for nearly two decades. We provide everything from time-tested strategy to cutting-edge creative. Ready to do more with your content marketing? Give us a call!