How to Brand Yourself as an Expert Eight Reasons to Use Content Marketing
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Content is the foundation on which online marketing is based. Whether it is a social media post or a blog article, it reaches out to people and positions you and your brand as an industry expert.
According to a study by KISSmetrics, 96% of website visitors are just researching and don’t want to be contacted or begin a relationship. Website visitors come to learn, not to be “salesmanned.” They seek value, not an advertising message.
Good content lets them learn and engage in a low-pressure way. This is not the time to request a meeting, but to give them value and a reason to provide you with their contact information. Content marketing provides value to your reader and it will have a very positive effect on your business.
Here are eight reasons to use content marketing to establish yourself as an expert:
- Establish credibility
Consistently creating quality content related to topics your target market is interested in will not only attract them to your website but it will also establish yourself as a subject matter expert. This will showcase your knowledge and highlight your experience within your field. When people see your qualifications first hand, they’re more likely to trust you and buy from you.
- Add value
In today’s world we deal with a lot of content overload. People are grateful if you share something that helps them and adds value to their lives. When you are careful about the types of information you share your content is more likely to be regarded as useful or helpful, and less likely to be skimmed over or deleted.
- Build relationships
- Drive engagement
- Generate traffic (the good kind)
- Improve SEO
Content curation is a great way to show not only what you know, but how you think and what you care about. “There are two elements beyond investment performance separating firms with high satisfaction from those with low satisfaction: the person that investors credit for their investment performance and the relationship investors have with their advisor,” said Craig Martin, director of investment services at J.D. Power & Associates. Showing personality gives people something personal to like and relate to.
Writing and publishing blog articles and social media content also creates an opportunity for your information to be shared through various platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, which in turn drives more readers to your website. A bonus is that by blogging you can keep your social media presence going without having to create a lot of other new content on a regular basis.
Ultimately, blogging is a way to drive readers from comments, likes, and shares to go to your website. Readers probably found your content by doing a search about information they need or in which they are interested. If they like what they read they will more than likely check out your website and your services. This will connect them to the information they wanted and allow them to explore the financial advisory products and services you offer.
There is a fairly direct correlation between blog posts and website traffic with abrupt growth at 300 to 500 pages, and a huge jump at 1,000 pages. What this means is that every time you write a post, it adds one more indexed page on your website. This gives you another opportunity to show up in a search engine and drive traffic to your site. Just because you posted content to your blog a month, a year, or even 3 years ago, does not mean that it is “old content.” Quite often website traffic is driven by people finding older posts in their search engine request. The content you post will continue to work for you even long after you may have forgotten about it.
- Create consistency
When writing content it is important to use a consistent voice or tone. When you do this successfully it gives a reader a feeling of who you are, what your values are, and even an idea of what kind of person they might do business with. A study by McKinsey & Company of 27,000 American consumers found that a consistent customer experience across the entire customer journey increases satisfaction, builds trust, and boosts loyalty. A reader that sees the consistent content that you are providing, and likes what they see, can very likely become a long time follower and, eventually, a client.
- Grow your audience
Content on your website can be shared on social media profiles and via email newsletters. This means that one well written piece of content can have three or more marketing uses for your online presence. This not only saves you time but also reaches more viewers on multiple platforms. The more people you reach, the easier it is for potential clients to find you.
As a marketing consultant it is my job to make sure that my clients are getting the most out of their content. Working with financial advisors, I have seen how writing effective blog articles on relevant topics boosts website traffic.
I have seen my clients’ website traffic increase after publishing well-written blog articles on a consistent basis. I have been working with one of my clients, GW Financial, Inc., and their content marketing efforts over the last few years. We began by posting at least four articles per month to their blog. This simple effort has caused the traffic on their website to double in the last two years. This can easily be attributed to the increased visibility through content creation. This client has also seen an impressive increase in website traffic via sharing content on social media. Two years ago the numbers were minimal, now there has been a 3,300% increase, with Facebook actually dominating that number with well over 60% of the clicks.
While creating quality content may take a little time and getting it to the right people is important, the payoff is outstanding and will be well worth the effort. You can position yourself as an industry expert while providing something of value to your readers and building relationships.
Crystal Lee Butler, MBA, is a creative marketer and results-oriented business consultant with over a decade of experience collaborating with independent advisors. At Crystal Marketing Solutions, she delivers exceptional insights for financial professionals enabling them to create a consistent marketing presence so they can focus on the things that matter most to them.