Do you ever feel like your competitors in your industry are talking about the same things as you?
Except they are able to post regular blogs and create consistent activity across their social platforms.
Do you find it challenging to sit down and spend hours writing blogs, posting them and being active across all of your social media platforms?
If you’re trying to do the occasional blog and random posts, then you are going to simply blend in with all the noise that’s already out there and find it impossible to attract new clients through your content and social activity.
Although hard, there are ways to overcome these challenges. But that doesn’t mean you have to reinvent the wheel. You can still stick to the strategies that work, but with a unique spin on things.
For instance, you have to find a social media strategy that works for you and is easily achievable.
The fact is, your business needs to be active on social media, whether you want to accept it or not. You need to play a numbers game, the more people you reach, the more people you can build relationships with and those relationships will turn into a steady flow of highly qualified sales leads who can be converted into ideal clients.
Which means you need blogs, social posts and advertising to achieve these numbers.
You need to be consistent with posting blogs and social media activity
You need to optimise the core social media platforms for your industry. That typically means you need Google, LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube. These are the core platforms that allow you to reach the majority of people out there in the digital world.
Once you optimise these platforms and make sure you can be found, then you can build trust, develop relationships and prove that you are an authority within your chosen field of expertise.
This means you need to schedule and drip feed your social media posts across all of your platforms to be found and attract new prospects. Then you need to use your social posts to drive traffic back to your blog. Your blogs need to encourage your traffic to click onto your free irresistible giveaway which is called a Lead Magnet. This is where your prospects can download your free irresistible offer and become an interested sales lead.
When they download your free lead magnet, they are effectively putting up their hand and saying they might be interested in your product or service. Which means you can start to build a relationship with them. The best way to do this is to use the lead magnet as a tool that gets them to follow you on your social media platforms so you can continue to deliver more interesting content in the form of your personal blogs and social posts.
As they consume your blogs you can retarget them with your advertising so they become familiar with your branding and messaging. Then once you have build trust and authority, it’s time to build your relationship.
Which means you need their email address and the best way to do this is to either offer another lead magnet that requires their email to download, inviting them onto a webinar or onto a 5 day challenge.
Using a platform that provides a Live Video Feed or even webinar software like Zoom, it becomes increasingly easier to run these sorts of relationship building techniques. The benefit of doing this means you start collecting email addresses which allows you to send out regular emails and continue to help and educate your growing community.
Once you start generating a growing list of interested email subscribers on autopilot, you use your blogs, emails, webinars and challenges to continue building trust, growing relationships and proving that you are an authority within your industry.
You need a content MAP to make creating your blogs and social media posts easier…
As a business owner you can’t afford to waste time or money on a digital marketing strategy that doesn’t create a return on your time and efforts. This is why it’s important to weave your product’s features and benefits into your messaging and focus on building connections first and sales later.
If you do it right, you’ll soon forget about trying to make a sale all the time and instead enjoy helping people who will naturally as a result start to buy from you as and when they are ready. When it becomes your clients idea to buy from you, that’s when it becomes so much easier to grow your business and pick and choose to only work with your Ideal Clients.
When you regularly give away massive value with your content on blogs, it positions you as an authority within your industry. Your ideal clients won’t need to think twice before trusting you.
It’s also important to deliver your own kind of branding uniqueness to help your prospects isolate you from your competitors. In the age of Big Data, your ideal client will spare about 8 seconds to skim over your content, so make sure to use imagery and attention grabbing headlines that will make them stop, hand over their email and follow you.
If you want your marketing strategy to help you generate a predictable, consistent flow of highly qualified sales leads who can end up getting on a call with you so you can build a personal relationship and eventually convert them into ideal clients.
Then you are going to need a Social Media strategy that plays a numbers game and a long game. You need to start with your social media awareness to generate traffic, then you need lots of lead magnets to encourage consumption of your content and help segment your sales leads. Then you need them connecting and following you on your social platforms so you can continue to deliver your content. And you need to run webinars or challenges to convert your traffic over to interested email subscribers so you can use your emails to build trust, develop relationships and prove that you are an authority within your industry.
That’s how you stand out and attract ideal clients who can be converted into highly qualified sales leads and ideal buying clients.
When it comes to redefining your Social Media Strategy, it all starts with going back to basics. Because coming up with a social media marketing plan means making some big decisions well before launching into full swing.
And after all, the social landscape is constantly twisting and turning every year. We consistently see Google and Facebook changing their algorithm and rocking the way we do business.
We need to consider consumer privacy and move away from any spammy concepts that offer short cuts but actually end up hurting our online reputation.
As normal business owners with normal marketing budgets, we need to understand that social-savvy brands have more money, resources and advanced analytics to create opportunities to sell directly to the same audience we are trying to reach. Which means we can no longer compete and instead we need to work smarter rather than harder.
We can use similar marketing tools as they use buy at a fraction of the price. Which means we can deliver the same volume of social posts and blogs as they do but without the expensive marketing teams. This is all possible when you know what tools to use and how to create foundational blog and social media content.
Oh, and there is a notable shift in social content marketing and that is brands are going all-in on video content in lieu of more “traditional” posts.
Sounds like a lot to process, right? How can you possibly find the time to turn these trends into a concrete plan for your business?
Regardless of your industry or audience, the approach to take is simple – start with your social media to increase traffic – create lead magnets to build trust and authority – build a community on your social platforms – run webinars or industry specific activities that collect email addresses from your community and then build trust, authority and relationships with your social communities that turn into sales.
Before we jump into how to create all of your content it’s critical to know why your content is so important. Your content is going to attract your social media followers and then transform them into ideal clients. Your social media platforms create the foundation of your awareness and the building blocks for your community. And don’t think for one minute that you don’t need a community. When I say community, I’m talking about Leverage. You need to be able to create content once and send it out to many. Which means you need followers, private groups and places where you can post and be seen by thousands. This is where LinkedIn groups or Facebook groups really come into play.
All of your social media platforms need to be congruent with your marketing message and optimised to attract your ideal clients. Increasing your brand awareness is your primary goal which means not just publishing content, but posting the types of content that engages and attracts new followers.
The beauty of social media is that you have lots of different places where you can directly engage with your potential customers. Your followers are capable of sounding off at any time and are empowered to ask questions before making a purchase.
These touchpoints are valuable for you to both figure out what your audience wants and provide direct customer service. Typically, high levels of engagement with your brand and social content signals that your marketing strategy is on-point.
Your average ideal client will be spending a lot of their time glued to their social media rather than surfing traditional websites. Therefore it becomes necessary to make sure your social media posts are found and direct your clients away from social media and over to your website. This means your social media is going to be your primary source of traffic versus organic or paid search. This is why you need your content marketing via social to give your followers a much-needed incentive to check out what your blogs have to offer and then check out your products or services to ultimately convert them into ideal buying clients.
Therefore you need to split your content into 2 different categories. The first is your typical blog and social posting where you deliver personal stories and show that you are a real person, these types of blogs can also be about trending subjects to capture your ideal clients when they have time to read.
Then there is the second category that’s more focused on selling your product or service. These blogs highlight the trigger points that work together to influence your ideal clients buying journey. They are a mix of short and long blogs that can be consumed quickly and easily. They will drive the key points home that you understand your ideal clients current problem and you have the solution that will quickly get them to their desired end result they are currently searching for.
The problem with most business owners is that they try to attract their ideal clients with the first category of blogs. This works but it has a side effect, it creates what I call digital friends. These are people who like to collect information, read stories and have a general idea on trending subjects.
Unfortunately without a solid call to action within these sorts of blogs, you end up creating a community of people who use you for information and end up buying from someone else. As humans we need direction and we need to be told to do something. Otherwise we tend to procrastinate and get distracted by other more interesting things.
This is why the second category needs to be introduced into the mix. The second category is not there to make friends but instead it’s role is to deliver your product or service in a structured way so that your ideal client gets what you do and buys from you.
This can only be done via a content mapping system that creates a journey from Point A – the pain state or problem and gets them to Point B – the gain state or solution they need, with easy to understand logical steps. It basically addresses the – What’s in it for me (WIIFM) thought pattern.
When creating blogs, social posts and even adverts that attract new ideal clients into your business, they will not be caring that much about you or the details of your product or service. Instead they will be wanting to know if it’s going to help them achieve the results they are searching for.
Therefore your content requires a mix of both personal and foundational blogs. You need 20% to be personal and 80% to be sales focused.
And the foundational blogs need to be 80% educational and 20% call to action.
These foundational blogs address emotional trigger points, the points that make your ideal clients buying journey. These points also help your ideal client to realise you are an authority within your chosen field of expertise. This direct approach actually builds trust as well which means you have a greater chance of building relationships because you are seen as being direct and honest.
When you address the WIIFM question, your ideal clients will gravitate towards you and want to learn more. That’s when it becomes easier to offer free eBook downloads, or a short video series that delivers even more foundational content. You need to be playing a numbers game, the more people you can attract and get into your community the more people you will convert into ideal clients.
If you were to convert 10% of the people inside your community and you had 100 people – that’s 10 new clients. But if you had 2000 people in your community, that’s 200 new clients! And that’s probably enough clients to generate a very successful return on investment.
So how do you achieve a 10% conversion?
You need to build relationships, trust, authority and the fastest way to do that, is to talk directly to your community. The fastest way to do that is through live webinars or facebook lives. This allows you to educate and answer questions in a live format with your community.
People buy from people which means you can’t create sales with just your content alone – but you can create sales by talking to people. So the more people to talk to, the more sales you make – it’s a conversion game.
And that’s why you need your social posts, blogs and lead magnets attracting your ideal clients into a community so you can start talking to them. And the only way to do this, is to have a content mapping system that helps you create the perfect foundational content that has the ideal 80 – 20 mix to help you stand out and get new clients.
Being consistent with your social media posting and blogging creates organic social traffic. Every platform has its own set of algorithms but one thing they all share in common is content. The more consistent you are with your content the higher you rank and the more people start to see you.
Luckily there are lots of free tools provided by the social networks that help you share posts, respond to customers, and interact with your social community. All modern social networks provide native analytics and opportunities to engage followers at no cost.
To be able to create content on a consistent basis, you will need a content mapping system. Something that helps you plan your blogs so they are all connected together and make up a journey of logical steps that help influence your ideal clients buying behaviours.
The practice of designing and considering ideas via a content map is like borrowing brilliance. The act of positioning your product or service into a content map, and thinking as you do so, creates structure. It creates a framework for thoughts, in which you get to capture genius and play with ideas regardless of your brain’s capacity to do so. At its simplest, a content map is a visual representation of your key ideas using sections and topics to convey meaning and connections.
Your content map can also become a visual guide to help your ideal clients see exactly where they are right now – let’s call that point A. This can be a specific problem that needs resolving and then your map can show point B – which would be the ideal solution that they are currently searching for.
Remember your ideal clients don’t care about the details, they just want to know if you have a system that can get them from point A to point B. If you can, then they want to see a few logical steps to take and if they resonate with them, they will consume your content. And that’s when you can get them into your community and start the journey to converting at 10%.
To get from Point A to Point B you can show your ideal clients a path that outlines the specific focus areas that are required to be achieved in order to reach their end desired result.
The path can be made up of logical steps that when combined help to achieve the end desired result they’re ultimately searching for.
The very first thing your map needs is a heading for each of the steps.
Nobody will buy your product or service if they can’t see how it will help them. In other words, when they first see your map and read the headings it needs to give them exactly what they want.
When you introduce a map from point A to point B, and highlight the core steps, it tells your ideal clients your product or service is relevant to them.
When you introduce the headings for each of the steps, you create desire. It tells your ideal clients that you are the person with the plan to help them get where they need and want to be. You give them a sense that there’s a roadmap that’s all about future possibilities.
Your content map headings are the satellite view of their route, and the steps are the turn-by-turn directions.
Your content map becomes the compass that your ideal clients need to follow if they want to achieve their end desired results that they have been searching for. It allows you to deliver context rather than just content. And this is how you remain relevant and visible in today’s busy online world.
Researchers have often debated the maximum amount of items we can store in our conscious mind, in what’s called our working memory, and a new study puts the limit at three or four.
Working memory is a more active version of short-term memory, which refers to the temporary storage of information. Working memory relates to the information we can pay attention to and manipulate.
Due to the fact that our short-term memory can easily remember 3 things, we create a content map that follows this same rule. Your content map needs to have 3 main logical steps that gets your ideal clients from point A to point B in the fastest time period.
So you take your product or service and fit it into 3 main steps. These will be the 3 steps your ideal clients needs to take to get from their problem state – point A – to their solution state – point B. Initially this might seem difficult to do but what you need to remember is that you are creating your content that will be used to attract your ideal client. So you don’t want to give them a huge volume of content because they will never read it.
As I have already mentioned, when your ideal client first comes across your content, they will not really care about you or your product, instead they will be in a WIIFM mode – what’s in it for me – and that’s because they are in a pain state and searching for a solution that will resolve their current problem.
So you just want your 3 steps to deliver the main steps of what your product or service does so they can quickly see you are an authority who has a solution that can help them. Then if you manage to capture their interest, you add in extra topics of interest for each of your 3 steps. This is where you can expand each step and drive home the most important parts.
Once again you use the short-term memory theory and only add 3 more topics of interest. This gives you 12 separate content areas in total to start focusing on and creating your content around.
Next, you want to give each of your 12 steps a heading name so it represents the journey from point A to point B. Once you have created the headings, read them out and make sure they outline the logical steps that will help them achieve the results they are searching for. If they can all become part of one overview discussion, then you have nailed it.
Now that you have 3 core steps and each of your steps have 3 topics of interest, it’s time to create your content. All you need to do is create an overview for each of the 12 steps, expand on them and make sure you have got your product or service message across.
Another great way of confirming that you have chosen the right logical steps in your map is to work out if you could write multiple blogs on each of your steps and topics of interest. If you can, then you know you are onto a winning combination.
Once you have completed all 12 overviews, you can now add them all together in different combinations to create your blogs and social posts. By following this format, your content provides your ideal clients with a good sense of what your product or service can do for them. Which ultimately allows you to engage with them much faster. Organizing your product or service into a map gives your messaging purpose and makes it much easier to create all of your content.
Getting your content noticed in this noisy world of social media requires eye-catching subject matter and imagery. You will need to use headings and photos that grab the attention of your ideal clients within your social media posts and blogs, regardless of the platform.
An easy way to work out what works the best is to just scan through your own news feed and see what images make you stop and take notice.
You also need to make sure your social media posts and blogs have call-to-actions to get your ideal clients off their social profiles and onto your website to download your lead magnets. There’s no magic formula or ratio. You need to mix it up in different ways, and see what reaction you get from your unique audience.
It’s a bit too much to expect that others will like and share your content, if you’re not doing the same. Better than expecting engagement, consider sharing and liking the content of others, free from the expectation of anything in return. If you promote a culture of engagement, then others will surely find their way to doing the same for you.
Great content is about more than just the information. It’s about getting your audience the results they want. So include ALL the information your readers need — without overwhelming them.
While most bloggers rehash vague general advice, your content map helps you to distill your knowledge into specific action steps that your readers can easily follow. Making it easy for your readers to implement your ideas.
It is important to create a minimum of 10 social media posts per blog, I would suggest at least 30 per blog. Each social post needs to have a section of your blog and a link that directs your traffic directly into that blog.
This is how you use your social posts to try and attract your ideal clients. It’s all about scheduling and posting across all of your social media platforms to work out where your target audience is hanging out.
Your analytics will show you which social platforms are giving you the best possible traffic and ROI, and then you need to focus on the top ones and start increasing your visibility.
Once you know where your target audience is hanging out, and which blog is resonating the most with them. You can start to use advertising to increase the traffic to it. Your analytics will tell you which blog creates the highest traffic, and this is the blog you use to grow your community, and promote further engagement.
One of the hardest parts of advertising is reaching the right people. With so many ways to define your target audience, it can be difficult deciding how to reach an audience that fits your ideal customer profile or people who are more likely to be interested in your business. This is why it is so important to initially filter your traffic with your social media posts and blogs, so you can start tracking the people who click through and read your content.
As a business owner, you need to be constantly looking for ways to reach new audiences who are similar to your ideal clients. After all, if you target people who are similar to the ideal clients who are already engaging with your company, odds are they’ll be more likely to convert and help grow your business.
You don’t need to waste a ton of money on ineffective advertising either because platforms like Google Adwords, Facebook and LinkedIn all have retargeting pixels. Your objective is to create lookalike audiences that combine the traits of your ideal clients to help you market to new professional audiences similar to your existing clients, website visitors and target accounts.
This means each time a prospect clicks on your social media posts and lands on one of your blogs, they will be tagged, allowing you to send ads directly to them or even build an audience of people who have similar interests to them. So your advertising slowly becomes more laser focused and you start converting more traffic into interested email subscribers or ideal clients.
There are hundreds of options when it comes to finding the ideal software that can help you schedule your social media posts across all of your platforms. It is a very easy thing to do and with 1 hours work, you can have a whole month scheduled out with posts being delivered on a daily basis.
An important fact to understand is that each platform uses different algorithms when it comes to showing your posts in other people’s news feeds. Just because you are posting 3 times a day doesn’t mean everyone is going to be showed your post.
It‘s all about the social interaction your posts get. If you are getting likes and shares, then the algorithm will help you get more coverage. And another important thing to remember is even though you can post 3 times a day, if your ideal client isn’t online, then they won’t see that post.
So it’s all about timing and knowing when is the best time to capture your audience. The only way to find out is to be consistent with your posting and testing different times of the day. Eventually your analytics will start to show you when you should be posting and that’s when you can slow down and maintain a lower volume of posts but get more activity.
With this combination of consistent blog posting and scheduled social activity, you will start to build a strong relationship with your audience. Your blogs will build trust and authority and you will start building your followers and community. Then combine this with your advertising and you will be able to drive more and more traffic to your lead magnet. Plus you have the added bonus of building a lookalike audience from all the traffic landing on your blogs. When you can advertise directly into your ideal clients, you can easily grow your business and be very successful with every campaign.