“Say a little, but say it well.” – Irish proverb
November 4 – Defining digital content as the “stuff” that conveys an idea, delivers a message, or is informative, Barry Alt and Dean Heckman have outlined three key points for developing powerful digital content that store owners can use to engage their customers. clients . This “stuff,” Alt said, is a message that strongly influences readers and helps you connect with customers.
Point 1: Raise awareness
You need to be found, create a following and add value. “If you’re not seen, you’re not hired,” Alt said. He recommends a “clarity and strategy before tactics” approach.
“You need to understand your customers, where they are, where and how they consume information, and their demographics,” Alt said. “We need to determine what they need to see, feel and hear to know that you are the trusted advisor for their needs.”
He said consumers search with content, peppering search engines with questions to find what they’re looking for. He said store owners need to understand how search engines work and learn good keywords that people will use to find their stores.
“How good is your findability? If you don’t use keywords and content, just pretty pictures, no one will find your business. If you make great content, even with your social media, Google will find you,” said declared Alt.
He used blogs as an example and recommended store owners actively use blogs to reach customers on the web. He mentioned that in his analytics program, 11 of the top 20 searches came from blog posts found online by customers.
“Blogging adds a 67% increase in monthly leads when done consistently,” Alt said.
He said stores could leverage YouTube, create content on the world’s second-largest search engine, and then push those videos to their other social media platforms.
“Videos get the best and most engagement. The most engaging types are informative (44%) rather than entertaining (37%) and 66% of marketers believe video guarantees more qualified leads,” said declared Alt.
For many marketers, social media is the source of a love-hate relationship. On the one hand, they know they need it and that helps businesses, but on the other hand, finding time creates inaction or inconsistent actions online. Alt recommends using a social media scheduler to automate posting and save time.
“Pick a platform where your customers hang out, then create posts for them there,” Alt said. “Then post it to [other platforms]. Build once, use many. Don’t create just one message. Create multiple messages from one.
Point 2: Customer acquisition
Once stores start creating consistent content that engages their audience, the next step is to convert those people into customers.
“A lot of stores are starting to tumble at this point. Turning prospects into customers means ongoing support and investment in content. You go from unknown to known,” Heckman said.
Alt said this was the time he recommended store owners create an email list. With an email list, people who may have signed up online or through a web form can now be entered into a funnel where they are marketed directly to the store.
“Email is still a thing. It’s big, but try not to sell right away; offer value,” Alt said.
Item 3: Retention
Now that you have the customer in the pipeline, how do you keep them engaged? To begin with, store owners need to remember that customer retention is about customers and their relationship with the store. Get it right and you’ll win customers and their friends and family. Alt said to differentiate here by being more personal.
“Give them a virtual or in-person tour, introduce them to your team, show monthly project updates, and introduce your clients [online]. They love it,” Alt says.
The benefit is that it turns your customer into a brand evangelist who will tell their friends about your store. Awareness, acquisition and fermion earn you money.
“People want education and value. It’s a long game. It can take six months to a year to get traction.”
Position yourself as the expert
Alt has offered the following tips for using digital marketing to position yourself as a store owner as an expert in your field.
- Blogs. Writing 600-1000 word blogs creates content that Google can find and shows your subject matter expertise. “Blogging content is huge for search and is very educational, so having blogs on your page is a good thing.”
- Video. Make short videos of five minutes or less and post them online. “Talk about the problems consumers have in the store and how to solve them. Customers love it,” Alt said.
- Webinars and podcasts. Find a platform to share your expertise and perspective with the industry. “If you’re a business and want to show off your expertise, attend webinars and podcasts,” Alt said.
- Printed articles. Magazines are always popular in the industry. “Can you get published in magazines or get articles written about your store?” Says Alt.