More than 78% of businesses planed to increase their content marketing budget in 2017. This is according to a recent survey by the Construction Marketing Association. Which means they will be producing even more content this year. And why not? It’s an effective yet inexpensive way to market your local business.
However, with tons of content being churned out daily, it’s no longer enough to click ‘publish.’ For local Houston businesses. It’s time to think of how to leverage content marketing in ways that will drive traffic, leads, and sales. To help you with this, we’re going to discuss some amazing content marketing ideas you should put into practice now.
#1 Create More Listicles
Some of the top-ranking articles on the web are listicles or list-based. And, that’s because people love to read them. What makes listicles more appealing is that they pack a lot of info into small readily consumable chunks. This is perfect for an audience that wants a quick access to whatever information they are looking for.
Listicles are great for local businesses. Even those with a small marketing budget can easily create them with little effort. Plus, they can be repurposed into a lot of different content formats.
If you’re wondering about the type of topics to choose for listicles, you can never go wrong with topics like “Top 10 Maintenance Tips,” “4 Things to Avoid When…,” or “5 Things to Ask Your ___ Contractor.” Just remember, these don’t necessarily need to be crafted around the direct benefits of using your product or service. For instance, if you’re a roofing contractor, you could talk about roofing materials, roof gardens or even rooftop party ideas.
#2 Answer Questions That Bother Your Audience
While working as a Houston digital marketing agency for a lot of contractors, we often ask our clients what their business objectives are. Interestingly, we almost always get the same answer. They say, “Get more customers to call us”. One of the things we do for them is drive highly targeted traffic to their website with the help of content that offers solutions for their customers. This works because search engines view websites that provide satisfying answers as more valuable. Thus, ranking them higher.
You could do this in many ways. The most common is FAQs or Frequently Asked Questions. Put up an FAQ section on your website. But, don’t stop there. Expand the answers to those questions into more elaborate blog posts or separate pages.
How to know which questions your customers are asking? Simple, ask them. Collect the most popular questions from your customers, and add them to your list. These could be questions related to the services you offer, or about your industry.
Quora and Twitter are two incredibly powerful resources for getting to know what real people are asking. This will help you create more relevant, useful, and targeted content for your audience.
#3 Establish Your Business as An Authority
Today’s savvy consumers no longer believe what marketers tell them. They need to see it to believe it. This is where thought leadership comes in. The idea is to establish yourself as an authority your customers can trust. You could highlight your knowledge and expertise in your industry via blog posts, infographics, eBooks, videos, and other pieces of content. You could create how-to guides to address common problems, provide DIY fixes, and maintenance procedures.
This way you’ll become a go-to resource for your customers. And, it’s likely that they will think of you when they run into a problem they can’t fix on their own. If you do this right it will not only educate your customers, but also position you as a trusted authority.
#4 Add Video to Your Content Strategy
2016 was the banner year of the online video. It’s not hard to see why. If you look around, there are tons of videos being produced and shared on web. YouTube is currently the 2nd largest search engine, after Google, and they get over 4 billion video views per day. These are telling stats! Your potential customers are watching more videos than ever. Is your business engaging with them using videos?
Video also impacts your website’s performance. Adding a video to your website will make it more likely to show up on the first page of Google search results. If you think getting started with video requires a big investment, you’re wrong. It’s totally possible to create professional-looking videos using your smartphone’s camera.
#5 Breathe New Life Into Your Old Content
For most small businesses, creating high-quality content on a regular basis is one of their biggest struggles. Coming up with new content ideas and topics, researching the relevant keywords, developing the content, and finding the time to share it… It’s a time-consuming process, and by no means, an easy job!
Ask yourself this question. Are you utilizing every piece of content you create to its fullest potential? Probably not, and there is one common reason why. If you’re churning out a lot of stale and regurgitated content, it’s not surprising that you aren’t seeing results.
Okay, so you created an awesome, well-researched piece of content that you know your audience is going to love! You shared it on your social media sites, but its not getting the “buzz” you had hoped for. What went wrong? It probably got buried under the ever-increasing volume of content that gets poured into people’s news feeds.
An effective solution to this problem lies in re-purposing the content you already have. Here’s how to do it. You could turn a blog post or a listicle into an infographic and re-post it. Do this with as many different variations of the original content as you can think of. Without going overboard of course.
Long-form content pieces such as “research-heavy” posts, case studies, white papers, or e-books are great for repurposing. These types of content usually include a lot of original research, and are rich in data and statistics.
Content Marketing Conclusion’s
As much as we’d love to say that you’ll see overnight results once you try these content marketing ideas. That’s not how it works. It often takes weeks or months for these efforts to start showing results. This is another reason why you’ll hear many businesses complaining that content marketing didn’t work for them. However, if you’re patient and consistent, these efforts will pay dividends far into your future.
To get the most out of your internet marketing. It’s a great idea to hire a professional to do it. This is to ensure your content marketing activities don’t take away from your core business commitments. Call ProEngage Local today to discuss how we can help you with your content marketing goals.