• Darcy Williamson

Turn Content Into Conversions

Content marketing strategies are de rigueur in today’s connected world. And content is valuable for many things, so how do we make sure we’re monetizing it effectively? Like any strategy, that famous line from Jerry McGuire says it best: “Show me the money.”

The fact is: content marketing strategies can be awesome, but only when they’re critical to the customer experience and drive more customers to your preferred marketing outcomes. Clutch reports that 82% of people purchased a product or service as a result of a company’s content, highlighting the importance of this strategy. And the primary objectives of content marketing are lead generation, brand awareness, and thought leadership.

The more sophisticated and effective content marketers use content as a critical component of the customer experience, using it to guide customers through the entire buyer's journey. So how do you deliver the most compelling content?

It’s critical to identify the customer early

The key component to providing the most relevant content and best customer experience is personalization. Accenture Interactive reports 73% of retail customers say they like to buy from brands that personalize the shopping experience. But, personalization relies on customer identification, which a vast majority retailers only do at checkout. In fact it’s critical to identify the customer early - as soon as they enter the store, your site, or begin researching online.

Personalization is critical to content because it has to be something the customer wants or is relevant to their prior behavior. The customer has to find it useful, helpful, worth their time, and, also, fulfill your marketing goals. Content that provides answers to customer questions, teaches skills, entertains, or informs is more likely to be used, shared, and even revisited. But why provide content when they’re already on my site or in my app?

Content is key to a buyer’s journey

It’s worth reminding ourselves just what goes into a buyer’s journey: (1) awareness, (2) research, (3) decision, and (4) purchase. If a potential customer visits your site or downloads your app, great! But, that’s only the start.

The customer’s next step is research. This includes product information, ratings, reviews, and even content. If the customer’s purchase is part of a household project, a personal initiative, or similar activity, content is critical. And if you don’t provide content to support their purchase, they will go elsewhere to find it. This delays and decreases the probability they will complete their purchase, and, even worse, they may be starting their buyer’s journey all over again with one of your competitors.

But with the right content to inform their purchase, you increase the likelihood they decide to purchase the product or service with you. And if it’s a multi-step project or initiative the customer is thinking of, the right content can increase the amount and value of purchases at checkout. But is that true?

Yes, it is

Infosys reports that 100% - yes, 100% - of retailers find they receive benefits from personalization. This comes from benefits such as increased sales (74%), increased profits (61%), increased online traffic (58%), and increased customer loyalty (55%). And loyalty is important, since Accenture found that 66% of U.S. consumers spend more on brands to which they feel loyal. And, when they’re loyal to a brand or organization, the same study found that a majority will recommend that brand to friends and family.

Make it easy to access

This is why retailers use technologies like NaskMe to pre-empt and improve the buyer's journey with helpful, personalized content. Digital technologies that support customers as they start projects and product searches move customer identification forward in the buyer’s journey. This even lets retailers personalize the shopping experience and gain deeper insights into why and with whom customers are shopping.

The bottom line? More personalized customer experiences, more brand loyalty, and increased customer lifetime values.