Businesses are producing vast amounts of content nowadays and much of it isn’t really effective. As the Content Marketing Institute found out only 30% of B2B marketers and 38% of B2C marketers rate their efforts as effective.
From what I see this is mostly because their content is simply dressed up promotional messages aimed at selling a product or service. They don’t focus on producing content that does at least one of two things:
- It’s useful – your audience are on a journey of discovery trying to fulfil a need they have. You should be there helping them on that journey. Because if you help them they will likely reciprocate and buy your solution to their need.
- It’s entertaining – getting a positive emotional response to your content is often enough to drive further action.
If it can do both that is great but it doesn’t have to. Focus on fulfilling one of these and you’ll produce something of value that builds a little bit of a relationship. Talking of value, what you ask for in return (the call to action) should clearly be of less value than the content you are giving them. This is the ‘Positive Value Exchange’ and should underpin everything you do.
So always ask yourself these two questions when it comes to producing content:
- “Will this content be useful to, or entertain, my audience?”
- “Am I asking my audience to do something of lesser value to them than the value they get from the content I am offering them”