How Do I Know That I am Publishing Quality Content?
by Jo Shaer, on August 12, 2015
Jo, you're always going on about publishing quality content that's relevant to your target market. How do I know if I am doing it right?
What constitutes quality content?
Whether you're writing about manufacturing, engineering or just B2B sales, the principles of writing good quality content for inbound marketing are still the same.
One of Jon's favourite books is Ann Handley's Everybody Writes.
She has an equation for deciding whether you're producing great content.
Inspiration x Empathy x Utility = Quality Content
Are your blog posts inspiring people to want to find out more?
Are your blog posts addressing pain points that your visitors are also experiencing in a way that makes them appreciate that you really do understand?
Are your blog posts offering solutions to those pain points that are easy to get hold of?
Am I publishing quality content for the right people?
The question you have to ask yourself is:
Is my content doing one or all of those things ... for MY target audience.
It's something we have been having a rethink about here at Lollipop. Originally, we wrote for everyone. Business owners and consumers. It was all about education, education, education. Every day for three years I published a post that I thought people might find of interest. But there was no structure to my marketing campaign.
What happened was that I got lots of visitors but nowhere near the ratio of leads that I should have been generating from that amount of traffic.
I was producing great content but not for people who would become my customers.
I was attracting the WRONG people to my website.
Identify target customers
Since starting with Hubspot, we have started to identify who our target customers are - and writing articles that are based around their specific pain points.
The number of leads that we are bringing into our funnel has increased. It's still not the right ratio because we have a lot of old posts that continue to bring large numbers of the wrong type of visitors. So we are trying to find ways to engage with those people and turn them into leads who can benefit from our online services.
Even when you are producing quality content for the right people, you have to remember that your visitors all have different goals and challenges - even though they still fit into the category of ideal customer.
So, the other thing you have to consider is context
Where is your visitor in their buyer's journey? Janrain.com ran a survey which discovered that 74% of online consumers got frustrated when website content appears to have nothing to do with their interest... and left the website!
So think about your target customers and address their specific state of mind!
Are they still researching? They want an empathetic piece that talks about their pain points and makes them aware of the solution that you can offer.
Are they considering their options? Give them content that shows why your solution is better than other solutions that may be on offer with case studies and comparisons.
Are they ready to make a decision about who to buy from? Offer them a free trial or an online demo that will help them understand why you are the best choice.
One of the great things about Hubspot is smart content. The automated software can show different pages/parts of pages to people at different stages of the buyer's journey or even in different countries. So people in the US get a price in $, those in the UK get £ on any pricing. A currency swap seems like a very small change but it can lead to a 50-60% increase in conversion rate!
Still not sure that you are publishing quality content? Are you agonising over whether you have dotted all your 'i's and crossed all your 't's? Read this post on when is good enough, good enough!
My baseline? If it fulfils all the above criteria and doesn't offend me when I read it, I'm ready to press publish.