No matter how much you love your business or industry, you might think a lot of people find it “boring”. Industries that have a reputation for being “boring” include insurance, real estate, finance, and cleaning supplies. Many business owners think they shouldn’t even bother trying to be interesting if people find their industry boring, but that’s where content marketing comes in.
Is body wash boring? You won’t think so after watching some Old Spice videos.
The top internet marketing companies know that nothing is boring if you have the right content strategy and if you’re targeting the right audience. Don’t toss content marketing aside just because you think people will find your company boring. You have customers who look for your products and services (otherwise you wouldn’t even have a business at all). You have curious leads with unanswered questions. You have people in your company who are just as passionate about what you do as you are. Of course you’re interesting. It’s all a matter of reaching out to these interested leads, being helpful, telling great stories, and knowing where to find your inspiration.
Stop Social Climbing and Start Helping
Trying to go viral and focusing on sales can be good tactics, but there’s one thing that can really help you reach out to the right people and build a loyal customer base: being helpful.
Your customers and leads found you because they’re trying to fulfill a need. Pay attention to those needs and answer their questions, whether they send them in through your contact form or post under a related category on sites like Quora or Yahoo! Answers. You’ll earn a lot more fans when you show people what you can do for them instead of strutting around and telling everyone how awesome you are compared to your competitors.
Be a Storyteller
Don’t stop at simply answering questions. You need to engage your customers with compelling and helpful stories. Start thinking like a journalist by keeping an eye out for the latest news, or take a few cues from fiction writers and get creative.
Don’t be a boring brand storyteller. (Comic created by Tom Fishburne)
Thinking more like a writer who genuinely wants to tell a story than as a marketer trying to sell something can add a dose of authenticity and interest to your content.
Know Where to Seek Inspiration
You can’t pull compelling stories out of thin air – you have to know where to find the right inspiration and resources for creating great content. Here are a few places you can start looking for content ideas:
- Current Events and Trends: Monitoring news sites, industry blogs, and even social media can help you spot trends and news that will help you create relevant and interesting content. Don’t stick to just rewriting the news articles you see; provide better context by including your own opinions or adding other facts to make your own article more useful to your intended readers.
- Customer/Client Questions: As I mentioned above, you need to pay attention to your customers and answer their questions. You don’t have to provide short, written answers all the time – some questions warrant a full how-to article, or even a video. Matt Cutts, for example, creates Google Webmaster Help videos based on their users’ questions.
- Other Customer/Client Interests: Observe your customer base’s other interests, and try to include them in your content. For example, if your target market is composed of young adults who are social media-savvy, you can infuse some pop culture references or news into your content.
Never settle for boring and mediocre content. Talk to us and we’ll help you develop a content strategy that shows your target audience just how interesting and valuable your business is.