Creating content not targeted to your specific market is like a boxer fighting a tough opponent with one hand tied behind his back. No matter how skilled the one-handed boxer he’ll quickly get knocked out and lose the fight.
The key to creating targeted content that your market wants is to understand your market and create content just for them. This post will show you how to target your content to your buyers so that your business goals don’t get knocked out the box.
1. Aim Content At Your Largest Market Segment For Greatest Returns
Larry Myler adjunct professor at BYU said in a Forbes article that: “Individual buyers are convinced that their circumstances and challenges are unique, and unless you can prove to them that your solution has been crafted with their situation in mind, you may lose the deal.”
“On the other hand, you can’t be all things to all buyers. You can, however, be the right solution to a large enough group of buyers to successfully grow your business, if you can implement a smart segmentation strategy,” Mr. Myler said.
Finding your core buyer can start with your sales and customer service teams. And the data they provide can help you pinpoint the typical buyer who makes up your largest market segment.
Doug Bewsher CEO of Leadspace, a company that generates sales leads, said in a well-written post that in the past before the digital age sales people invested a lot of time in finding the perfect buyer, and that the bits of paper with good leads wrote on them were like money.
“However, an “ideal customer” is actually a collection of ideal customers who…take many shapes and forms. Ideal customers won’t necessarily resemble each other on the surface or look how you might expect,” Mr. Bewsher said.
No business can be all things to all people. So, targeting your content is critical to creating content that appeals to your largest market segment or segments.
2. Solve Buyer Problems With Your Content For The Best Success
Entrepreneur Chuck Cohn said in an Inc. article that management must fully understand their business top to bottom and look for answers to questions that they might not really want to know the answers to.
“Extracting the value from customers’ testimonials and feedback requires a company-wide, systemic effort. However, there’s no doubt that a customer’s positive review is infinitely more valuable than your own promotion,” Mr. Cohn said.
One of the best ways to find out what your market really wants in terms of content is by surveying them.
Marketingland.com provides a great post on how to do surveys that break down the process and explains everything you need to perform excellent surveys to find out what your buyers want.
These surveys can be formal or informal. And the basic kinds of questions you want to uncover with your surveys are:
- Why did they buy from you?
- What keeps them up at night?
- What motivates them the most?
- What do they need answered?
- What do they need to solve?
Having answers to why they became your buyer will help you to create content to attract similar buyers in the future.
But many companies only target their content to get sales from new prospective customers, according to a survey by Loyalty 360 and SAS that noted 45% of B2B companies don’t focus on customer retention.
However, it’s often much easier and less costly to keep and resell a current customer than to find and sell a new one.
3. Create Different Content Formats For The Stages Your Sales Funnel
Kevin Cain a communications expert said in his great post: “For any piece of content to be successful, it has to be personalized and speak to a specific person…at a specific point in his or her buyer journey.”
Similarly, to give your market the right content, you should take a good look at your sales funnel to see what kind of content they need at each stage of the journey.
There are three basic stages in the sale funnel which are: the top, the middle, and the bottom. For each of these stages, your typical buyer will need a different kind of content.
The top stage of the funnel:
The top of you sales funnel is the awareness stage. At this stage, your typical buyer prospect becomes aware of your product or service.
Or, they become aware of a need for a solution by using your product or service. Some of the content types they need will include:
- how-to posts
- online articles
The middle stage of the funnel:
In the middle funnel stage, your typical buyer prospect is aware that a certain product or services could solve a problem or fill a need for them. Now they are trying to figure out if your solution will work. For this stage, they will need such content as:
- buying guides
- product videos
- case studies
The bottom stage of the funnel:
The bottom stage of the funnel is the purchase stage. Content at this stage needs to help them overcome any objections and buy your product or service. At this stage their needs will include:
- deep product demos
- customized estimates
- deep white papers
- personal consultations
While the content types listed above overlap and isn’t a complete list, they are a basic list of the content needed for each stage of the sales funnel. Then, once your prospect becomes a buyer, you will need buyer retention content to nurture the relationship.
To target content to your market, look carefully at your current buyers to find out just who they are. Next, focus on the largest segment of your market and survey them to find out why they purchased from you in the first place, and what their real business problems and concerns are.
Then, take a careful look at your sales funnel and create content for each stage of your buyer’s journey. So, you can deliver in your content just the right combination of jabs, hooks, uppercuts, and straight right hands to win in the content targeting arena.
Creating the content you need can be a time consuming and frustrating process. But it doesn’t have to be because I’m here to help you. Contact me today for the content you need!