In today’s competitive marketing landscape, quality content is more important than ever. Your target audience has thousands of brands to pick from. If you want them to choose you over the competition, you need to find ways to engage them online.
Educational content is one of the most effective ways to improve audience engagement, drive sales, and ultimately grow your business. Outlined below are seven methods to educate and engage your target audience through content.
1. Optimize Your Blog for SEO
Blogging is one of the most popular forms of content marketing. Blog posts help drive high-quality traffic to your website and build trust with prospective buyers.
Typical business blog content covers topics that interest your clients and provides answers to commonly asked questions. To make the most of your blogging efforts, it’s important to follow a few best practices for search engine optimization. These SEO tactics will help drive more traffic to your website.
When creating content, include relevant keywords that your target audience is searching for. Avoid “keyword stuffing,” though — it’s off-putting to the reader, and it won’t fool Google. Rather, strive to incorporate keywords in the most organic way possible. To help keep people on your site and increase the chances of turning readers into leads, incorporate internal linking into every blog post.
2. Provide Guides
Think of guides as longer, more in-depth blog posts. Guides provide your readers with a detailed description of a product-related topic. For example, Gabb Wireless, a wireless communications company that developed a safe phone for kids, has created detailed guides for its site. These guides focus on the topic of phone safety and offer advice for parents on how they can set tech boundaries with their kids.
When creating a guide, you must first understand your audience’s concerns and challenges. If you’re unsure what these pain points are, reach out to your sales team and ask what questions they hear most from prospects. These questions are all potential topic ideas for your next onsite guide.
3. Offer White Papers
White papers and guides are often discussed interchangeably. However, there are some key differences that make white papers their own thing. While guides provide a detailed overview of a topic, white papers spend more time focusing on research and data. If your company has conducted primary research, white papers give you the opportunity to establish yourself as a thought leader within your field.
Since white papers are data-focused, they can sometimes get the reputation of coming across as boring. But they don’t have to be. Use colorful charts to display data and avoid using a stuffy tone. Instead, keep the vibe conversational, as if you were presenting findings to a work colleague.
4. Create Infographics
Many people are visual learners and struggle to understand topics from blog posts alone. Infographics can be helpful tools that cater to different learning styles and provide information in an easily digestible format. An infographic is a visual representation of information designed to be understood quickly. This information may be represented in the form of graphics, pictures, charts, or a combination of the three.
Because infographics are visually appealing, they lend themselves well to social media. But since many infographics contain a hefty amount of information, you don’t want to post the entire thing at once. Instead, break your infographic down into chunks. This makes it easier for social media users to consume and provides your social media team with more content for their content calendar.
5. Send Newsletters
Having a comprehensive collection of onsite content is great. But what’s the point if no one ever sees it?
To help make sure your blog content doesn’t go unread, consider adding newsletters to your content strategy. Email newsletters help you get content to interested prospects and customers. This allows you to build credibility and authority with your target audience.
One of the keys to a successful newsletter is keeping it simple. Your audience doesn’t have 10 minutes to spend reading your newsletter, so make it easy to skim. Check out The Hustle as an example. This daily newsletter provides readers with quick updates from a variety of industries, including tech, business, and finance. Most of the newsletters include a few short features that take less than a couple of minutes to read.
6. Partner With Influencers
In today’s digital age, your company’s social media presence is essential. But almost as important is who is using your product. Partnering with social media celebrities (aka influencers) can help expose your brand to new audiences. Influencers are naturally charismatic and engaging — that’s why they have huge followings. Working with these professionals aligns your brand with theirs, building a positive reputation.
When seeking influencers to partner with, it’s important to look beyond their follower count. Scroll through their page and see if they’re engaging in meaningful conversations your company wants to participate in. Both parties’ brand values should align before you begin creating content together.
Once you’ve chosen which influencers you’d like to work with, it’s time to make your pitch. To increase your chances of nailing a partnership, create a customized pitch for each influencer you contact.
7. Go Live on Social Media
Onsite content like blog posts and guides are an essential component of a successful content strategy. But your customers also want to see your products in action.
Since COVID-19 flipped the world on its head in 2020, live streaming has risen in popularity. Research by Livestream and New York Magazine found that 80% of consumers prefer watching a company’s live video over reading a blog post. This is because live streaming gives customers the feeling of participating in an event or conversation. Pre-recorded videos don’t have that same effect.
One simple way companies can incorporate live streaming into their content marketing strategy is by hosting weekly Instagram live videos. When creating an Instagram live video, the goal is to both educate and entertain your audience. Live Q&As lend themselves well to this format.
Creating quality content isn’t optional. It’s essential. If you want your company to thrive, you need to look for unique ways to educate and engage your target audience. If you’re not sure where to start, try implementing the strategies listed above.