Hard selling is like flashing a “Buy Now” button on your consumer’s screen. It’s futile and annoying. Who likes that anyway?
The times have changed but consumer sentiment hasn’t. Never forget to provide your target market the value they’re looking for. Basically, everything your business produces must be useful to your audience. Here are the kinds of high value content to “heart sell” and not hard sell your brand so that you get the brand love you need to get your customers hooked:
eBooks showcase content in a wide variety of forms, from step-by-step guides to studies with credible resources. eBooks are vital because they examine and provide solutions to your business's pain points.
In the content marketing industry, useful topics would sound something like: “The Ultimate Guide to Successful Content Marketing” or “How to Create High Converting Content”. eBooks provide value by delving deep and backing content with thorough research. The research is conducted among small businesses or big brands, which expose marketing problems. eBooks then provide strategies, and explain why these work and continue to yield excellent results.
Blogs and articles establish your business as a trusted resource for helpful content. While eBooks are delivered periodically, blogs and articles are posted more frequently, and are ideal to be recycled or sent through to your market’s inboxes as necessary.
In terms of content, always go back to the question, “What does your market need?” There are so many ways to answer this need of course, depending on your industry, and how you write about it is key. The most important thing to remember is to craft a powerful headline--one that offers a solution and guarantees results.
“On average, 8 out of 10 people will read headline copy, but only 2 out of 10 will read the rest.” (CopyBlogger)
CopyBlogger further elaborates on content musts:
Get your first sentence read... And the next, and the next--until the reader reaches the call to action.
Immediately emphasize on the benefit to the reader.
Back your content with proof.
While e-Books and blogs seem like a long lecture, infographics and quick tips give you a fast one. The competition for eyeballs on the Internet is tough. There’s social media, entertainment websites, emails, and apps. How do you even cut through? Citing QuickSprout on other forms of content with regard to consumer attention: “For the most part, they want high quality images with easy to read text that breaks down large topics into digestible bites.”
Give your market a sort of micro handout--something that’s insightful for at least the first eight seconds they read it. Eight seconds because people generally lose concentration after eight seconds (TIME)--1 second less than that of a goldfish! You can blame our fast-paced, digital lifestyle, but you can also keep up. More food for thought: Humans process visual information 60,000 times faster than text (HubSpot).
Some audiences love hearing or watching an in-depth interview or discussion rather than reading it on print--plain and simple. If it’s a podcast, the audience can listen and take notes at the same time. If it’s a webinar, the audience can enjoy watching a live discussion as it progresses and unfolds. It’s more dynamic. If you have the resources to set these up then holding these won’t be a problem. Whether it’s live or pre-recorded, it would be more helpful if your webinar or podcast is downloadable, so your audience can access it at any time.
Give your target market a sense of your product or service with a free trial. What better way to say, ”Try out our product/service--it’s outrageously awesome--and it’s free” than to get them to use an app?
The free trial is a path toward conversion and provides a sneak peek into what your target market can expect from you, so make sure to deliver. The story ends this way: the user likes your product so much they end up buying it.
It’s time to get your business in the right track to get that “like” or “follow”. As a final note: The more value you give your market, the more your business gets back.