Content marketing is one of the most powerful marketing tools startups can employ. Blogs are powerful drivers of awareness and creators of purchasing intent which ultimately lead to new customers, new employees or other new opportunities. This is doubly true as buyers are educating themselves before contacting sales teams to a far greater extent than ever. Below are the five things I wish I would have known when I first started writing this blog. I hope they are useful for anyone designing or redesigning a content marketing strategy.
Be Very Clear About Your Goal We are all selling something, whether it's our ideas, ourselves or our company's products. For a a SaaS company, a blog's measure of worth is the rate at which it adds email subscribers to its newsletter. In the world of content marketing, emails are the most direct way of translating page views into revenue. Each email address on that list is a lead for the sales team.
The Fastest Way to Grow Traffic is to Post Elsewhere and Link Back Social, email and direct traffic will form the basis for a consistent traffic stream. But the best way to attract large numbers of new readers is to post on other sites with broader traffic bases than yours, and link back. If you don't bring in new readers, traffic will flatline.
The Blog is a Lifecycle Marketing Tool Whatever you may be selling, you should design your content to shepherd potential customers through a buying process: educate customers about a product area, cultivate people into experts, convince them to buy your product, and equip them with the tools to close the sale internally. It's important to identify your customer segments and publish content for each of the different stages in the buying process frequently.
Law of Compounding Returns Like a bank account, a blog demonstrates compounding returns. About half of pageviews to a post on this blog arrive after the day it was first published . So invest in blog posts whose relevance persists through time, which called evergreen content, and watch your audience grow.
You Don't Have Time for This You are only going to give me 48 seconds to read this post, so I better get to the point fast. Write posts in inverted pyramid writing style, which puts the most important points at the top of the article. In 48 seconds, I can't go very deep on a topic. Cut posts into smaller posts and crosslink posts to create longer pieces.