As promised, here is the follow up on how to properly communicate with your clients in this day and age. We ended the last post discussing the two-way communication model and that it is, by far, the best way to engage with your client base today, but how do you apply it to your business? The following are the best ways to get your marketing in sync with your customers.
- Make use of modern day marketing channels
Most people today do not need to be convinced of the value of traditional advertising. You offer a product or service and you tell people about it. Seems simple enough, and the value proposition is evident, even if measuring ROI is a little less clear.
But many business owners today struggle with seeing the value in utilizing social media channels, blogs, or other inbound marketing options. Why? It offers the same value proposition as traditional media, but with an added bonus: it allows you to have a conversation with your customer.
The fact of the matter is that consumers today are more informed, more engaged, and more vocal about brands than they have ever been before. If you aren’t operating in this space and engaging these same consumers, your competitors will.
So do a little research, get your brand active on inbound marketing channels, and start engaging with your stakeholders.
- Develop a content strategy
Ok, so you’ve gotten your brand into the exciting world of inbound marketing, but now what? What are you supposed to do with it? This is where developing your content strategy is critical.
The key to the strategy is to find a way to add value to your followers that don’t involve you blatantly plugging your brand constantly. People will quickly tune out if you do this. Determine what information would be of value to your followers and plan accordingly. Would they appreciate humorous posts or industry news? What about informational videos?
Whatever you decide to do, make sure that you are developing at least SOME original content. Sharing other peoples’ content or links is a good way to keep your brand engaged, but content that you produce yourself is exponentially more valuable for branding. It establishes your brand as a “thought leader”, and is tremendously valuable in your marketing efforts.
This all requires time and effort to execute, but it comes with the territory and will pay off in the future.
- Make a content calendar
Now that you’ve gotten your content ready to go, it’s time to schedule it to maximize impact. I have always found it best to do this at the end of the current month to plan for the following month. This allows you to have the most relevant information for your content.
Go through the upcoming month and find relevant holidays, industry events, or other special considerations and plan accordingly. Just be sure to have a steady flow of content planned at least 3 times a week even when there are no events taking place.
- Keep the content coming
One of the biggest challenges companies face here is stopping the flow of content after a few weeks. This can be because you may not see the results you wanted immediately or you just don’t feel like you have the time to keep up with it.
Your traction will be slow at first. It will take you quite some time to get that initial traction if you’re starting from scratch, but it will grow. I’ve started business accounts that took several weeks just to gain the first hundred followers, but then it quickly began to accelerate. It just takes time, effort, and a little TLC to get your inbound marketing channels to really blossom.