In the last post I listed 10 primary content roles that will ensure you are adding value in your content marketing - a mandatory requirement for visitor engagement and conversion.However, while adding value is foundational, it won't convert anyone in and of itself. That's where secondary content roles come in. Good content marketing is beneficial to both the visitor and the brand.
Because secondary content roles are conversion-focused and talk about the company, they need to shine at the middle and bottom portions of your sales funnel - after visitors have already gleaned gems from your content and you've earned the right to talk about yourself.
This is not to say that secondary content roles can't play at the top of the funnel, but they do need to be carefully regulated. Visitors may not yet know or care much about your brand, and this is content marketing (not sales or advertising). Content comes first, then marketing.
Now that the disclaimers are out of the way, have a look at these four secondary content roles that will serve as catalysts for conversion.
#1: Reveal Product Use CasesShow your visitors how awesome your offering is, but not by talking about your product. Instead, discuss what and how your product delivers solutions. And you don't have to just talk, either. A few ways that use cases can be revealed include articles, videos, demos, free trials, and presentations.
Another big strength of revealing use cases is that it can be done quickly with little detail, or in long-form with tons of details. It all depends on (see a pattern here?) where your visitor is in the sales funnel. Leverage this secondary content role to open a visitor's eyes to unique ways your product can help them.
#2: Accentuate Product BenefitsThis can overlap with revealing use cases, but it's not the same. In addition to discussing what and how the product delivers solutions, you'll want to harp on the positive impact the product has on your customers' day-to-day lives. A good writer will be able to look at your buyer personas and flesh out the emotional benefits to be had from the solutions your product provides.
A good question to ask here is, "Why is buying this product worth it?". The visitor is not buying a drill bit (product), they're buying a drilled hole (solution). More specifically, they are buying a hole in their living room wall for a nail and picture to hang from (use case). But really, they're buying the warm, fuzzy feeling they'll get whenever they look at their loved ones in the picture frame. That's why it's worth it.
#3: Highlight Unique Selling Proposition (USP)The middle and bottom portions of the sales funnel are where your visitor knows about your brand and knows they will need something similar to what you have to offer. What they don't know (yet) is which product and brand to choose. In order to win them over, your offering has to be exceptional at one or two important things. Just as importantly, they have to know what those things are!
Let me know if you need some help developing a compelling USP, but once you have one, make a point to let visitors know what it is. It's on us as marketers to convince visitors of the value that we represent - they won't know unless we tell them!
#4: Demonstrate Superiority Over CompetitorsIt's likely that there are some other brands trying to snatch visitors out of your sales funnel, and they'll do it, too - unless you can prove to your visitors that you are the best!
Maybe you have amazing customer service, but they say they do as well. Maybe your product delivers incredible results, but their product is "best-in-class" or other such jargon. Content that converts uses definitive, objective, 3rd-party, or otherwise tangible means to show a brand's dominance in the industry.
How do marketers leverage these content roles?I like to mix-and-match, focus on one, or use all four, but if you use more than one, I would recommend prioritizing them. Why? Sometimes it takes a lot of words (or seconds) to execute them properly, so your content piece may run out of room.
In the next article, we turn to a huge question on the minds of many marketers - how "hard" or "soft" should the sell be for a given content piece?
Copyright Luke Hastings © 2017