You know, the good part about content marketing is that it works well when you create it, having in mind the end-user who folds on the user’s wishes.
But the content that suits is different from the content that works.
It’s not enough just to create content (see the articles written on this topic).
A marketing strategy with functional content is one that has been optimized to deliver maximum business value.
It differs from content marketing that works because it is not built to increase the visibility of the brand and winning brand exposure.
It is built to meet the specific needs of the business.
The fundamental attribute that separates the functional from the nonfunctional is that each piece of content plays a specific role in the main gear.
The main gear is clearly defined, and although it will be tested and retested, and experiments will lead things in less known ways, it will not be a radical change.
We target specific objectives and measure results.
How do the different types of content fit into a content marketing strategy?
There are many different possibilities to think about this gear that puts things into operation, but below we’ll show you a few models that have been very useful in the field:
- educational content
- emotional bonding
- emotional decision
- rational decision
- understanding the product
- the growth
Let’s analyze each one.
Exposure (first impression)
While it is true that exposure is the stage where users are meeting with your product, the goal should be more than that.
Surely you know some of the types of content that fit here:
– publishing on popular sites.
Blog articles created to attract traffic.
Articles that are made of viral, attracting attention with something memorable, something to remember.
We could write a lot of articles about how to create exposure content (most of the industry spend most of the time talking about this topic), but here I want to discuss the content that leads recognition of the mark.
Some call this process of awareness. We can gain exposure without gaining recognition, awareness, branding.
It is essential that exposure is used to create an association in the mind of the public between the personal brand or otherwise and the topics and values most directly relevant to the brand.
You have to make a memorable impression that visitors are anxious to know who you are, as well as addressing a subject in a way that is appealing enough to associate with your brand, as opposed to being just pieces of information gathered everywhere.
This stage is seen as a period of time when someone has an increased interest in a topic but does not feel sufficiently mastered on the subject.
The purpose of educational content is to maintain interest while identifying gaps in specific subjects, increasing curiosity and attracting visitors to learn more.
In this process, the audience becomes more educated about their problems, problems that can be solved by the products you offer.
It is important not to promote aggressively the products (at this moment), but to become aware of the context in which they exist, so that they feel the need of your products, say “how well if there was such a product that would make my work easier “.
At this stage, you should have multiple subscribers to your mailbox, register your email address to receive answers to their burning issues.
This stage is closely linked to the two above. The target audience has certain values, feelings, feelings.
Even if the visitor does not subscribe, he has to return as often as possible to the site to form an emotional bond.
This connection is a somewhat vague concept, largely speaking of building a relationship of trust and a lasting relationship.
It’s about overcoming the rational benefits of your products and building a link with the target audience based on common values, interests and concepts.
It is also about gaining confidence through the content offered. This means giving them practical content, even (maybe) a content that makes them go through problems with your products.
Whether you choose to create special content to create an emotional (human) connection, such as personalized personality using personal anecdotes, choose to create that humanization in educational content.
The first decision a buyer makes is an emotional, not a rational one. I firmly believe that this extends even to the business sector, even if “rational” decision-makers play a more important role there.
It is important to be aware of those decisions, as well as the timing and the way to appeal to these emotions.
How to deal with this:
– a frustration or emotional desire occurs and is naturally addressed in educational content.
There is a natural call to action in educational content that leads to content conceived to address the emotional issue (think of a contextual link at the end of a blog article as a kind of action call that will actually work for people reading posts from the blog).
Content is a landing page designed to appeal to these emotions.
This landing page naturally leads to the next stage.
The second decision that every buyer makes is rational. After making the emotional decision, the rational brain will still be sceptical.
Now is the moment when your content has to address any rational concerns. Some of these terms are:
- the cost
- the desire to compare the product with similar products
Your content needs to address these buyers’ fears, specific concerns before making a purchase. Some obvious solutions are:
- A free trial for testing.
Compare your products with your competition.
Different price levels.
I like to see the purchase itself as separate from the emotional decision and the national stage.
Your only goal here is not to disturb a sale that is already being completed.
This means identifying bottlenecks, such as surprise costs or cumbersome interface.
Understanding the product:
If the content is not enough, you will suffer.
It is essential to make sure that those who have bought the product understand how to use it, or they will feel overwhelmed, will admonish the service and leave negative comments.
Includes an email company with simple things to understand the basics of SaaS.
The introduction should be as visible as possible and include a tangible example.
Send additional tips in the coming days to make sure they understand the features of the product before the free period expires.
Continue to provide examples of how to use the product, even if some examples use the same features to inspire an idea of how different SaaS usage cases are.
The only major difference bet content-centred content-centred content is that loyalty continues after the end of the free period.
Beyond that, the transition should be smooth.
Loyalty content must continue to provide more and more complex examples of SaaS usage to address more advanced issues.
Loyalty content can include a stabilized e-mail automation and automation of marketing, as well as more regular blog updates that will be sent to your entire audience.
Once there are enough users, establishing a community forum for users is a must. User-generated content keeps the thriving community as well as bringing new users interested in the community.
Remember, loyalty content and educational content should not be completely separated from each other.
Showing loyalty content in the “educational” stage will help them better understand what the product can do and how it can help with their problems.
On the other hand, as educational content is what brought a significant portion of customers, they associate that content with your brand and expect to see it and use it further, continuing to use your SaaS (Software as Service).
For most SaaS, loyalty will be the final stage for most customers, and it is important to keep this in mind when it comes to these two stages.
The expansion is for two things: users who use advanced product features (power user) and different SaaS products.
Think of this stage as a short version of 1 to 8 all over again.
This is the best way to think, because you essentially sell a new product, even if it is just an upgrade to an existing one.
Psychology is the same, but now you’ve gained your trust.
Supporting and promoting the brand:
Brand promotion is an objective to keep in mind when creating each stage of the content (from the above)
A brand lawyer is someone who is so impressed with the brand that he will recommend and defend it actively.
It’s also important to note that this may happen for your brand as a content provider or for your SaaS vendor brand.
In order to support the witness through “lawyers”, you have one option: to amaze your customers at every stage described above of the channel.
Surprise them with the usefulness of your content as well as your Saas. These two forces together will leave a lasting impression on the customers, and they will praise the product to others.