Me? Make Content? No One Wants to See That Stuff!
You're an industry that's been around these parts awhile. You don't need to go online. You don't want a Facebook account. You don't care about Twitter. You've got the Yellow Pages. That's cool, right? Nope. Let us tell you why.
The world is changing at a pace far more rapid than most of us even want to admit to. Many businesses are understandably a little nervous about where they fit in. Industries as varied from plumbers to private investigators are realising that simply having a website no longer makes the digital grade. Once upon a time, when looking for a service, we simply picked up the Yellow Pages and picked the company with the biggest ad providing the service we needed. Perhaps we turned to the community papers, hoping to find a local bargain. We may have even casually leaned over the fence, cup of tea in hand, and asked Betty next door who she uses. But, my word, how the world has changed.
Today, if you've got Internet access (that's more than 2 Billion people, folks!) you're probably gonna head online whenever you need/want/think about something. Burst pipe? Go online to find a plumber. Having a wedding? Go online to find an organiser, caterer, decorator... wife(?). Need a lawyer? Well what do you know, people go online to find that, too. It's simply the way things are done now. So how do you manage to be found by those potential customers? The answer my friends is simple: content. When it comes to boosting your organic search engine results producing content that answers questions, tells a story and keeps people captivated is key. If you've been working in your industry for (insert amount of years here) you probably know more about that industry than any ordinary Google searcher. So excuses about not having anything to write about are unfounded. People turn to search engines to research and discover. The more individual and relevant pieces of content on your website the higher your chances are of ranking on those search engine front pages; and lets be honest, rarely do people go beyond the first page so you do really want to be on that prime piece of Internet territory.
The way we suggest clients aim to get onto the front page is through the implementation of a content strategy. This means using words, images and video across multiple social media platforms, i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest, Google + etc, etc. Depending on the nature of your business different social media and content publishing platforms will be more or less suited to your needs. However, you may not realise the potential of marketing your services through a particular social media platform till you do your research or seek help from a marketing agency.
All this may sound overwhelming, you may throw your hands up in the air and proclaim that "This, is all too much!" But it needn't be.
Content is simply marketer jargon for communication. If you start communicating with your customers it's likely they'll start tuning in to listen.
All you need to do to get started is think about one thing you want to tell your potential customers, or one thing you think they might need to know. Ensure it's actually helpful and not a poorly-disguised press release -- be warned that today's savvy consumer is rather good at catching the stench of blanketed self-advertising. Once you've turned you piece of info into a few hundred words it's time to turn those words into an image, then a video, then a podcast then... you get the point. All the while sending each new adaptation of that content out to your social media audience. Ensure the content is optimised for SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) by utilsing the words people naturally do when using Google to find services like yours.
At the end of the day 61% of Internet users research products and services online*. If you want to reach your new generation of customers you need to provide what it is they're looking for.
*Interconnect World: Shopping and Finance, 2012