Although each writer and content strategist would give you a different definition of content marketing, none will deny that the main idea is to provide insightful answers to readers. The process of creating powerful content would often lead you to identifying your customer’s agonies or answering the questions which might have been unanswered or ambiguously answered. Addressing those needs is indeed the way to best possible content marketing.
Identifying the questions needing an answer
This is a basic and fundamental question. There can be many popular answers like the following:
- You can log into the same news source as most in your industry and beat them with pace when covering those.
- You can also look for what the thought leaders are talking about in your industry.
- You can also check for the questions asked in popular blogs which are within your domain.
- You can check online question banks such as Quora, forums, Wiki Answers etc
- You can ask your existing readers what they would love to read from you
- You can look for which topics are trending in the social networks such as Facebook, Google Plus and Twitter. These services allow you to do topic search using #hash tags or keywords.
- In case you organize a webinar, look for the questions which were asked previously.
- Although, I completely agree that all of these work superciliously well, I don’t see a strong contender who should be there on each of those lists. Yes, I am talking about the email!
Check your inbox daily!
On an average, everyday we read two new articles on online marketing or download eBooks on this topic. Then of course there are those seminars, webinars, infographics and videos as well as printed books.
Most writers look for an opportunity to get published like I do. There is nothing wrong with it but we need to stick to the basics. Here again emails have no competitors.
We discuss every minute ways becoming more influential on the large social networks like Facebook, twitter and Google Plus. We discuss and analyze every update, features, trends, acquisitions. When it comes to emails, we think of it like a mid 1990s sensations that has lost its power and appeal and now are mostly used by people past their youth.
Today when we talk of marketing, most of the message we deliver die before they serve their purpose. The crowded mediums deliver so much of crap that we subconsciously filter through crap easily. But emails stand out here as the medium which is directly addressed. In other words, someone receives it because he, directly or indirectly, has expressed his desire to receive it. Emails are free, emails don’t suffer from algorithmic changes, and email is still the official business communication medium. It is high time to take this medium seriously.
What are the ingredients of email burger?
The emails come with lots of interesting questions. What is the price of your product? How is it better than others? What is the best advantage this products offer? Apart from these generic examples, you can also find lots of interesting questions in your email box which you can answer. If you remember, we spoke the best way to content marketing is answering questions and where else you can find these hot questions except the mailbox!
You can even use the questions as the title of your articles.
Be it appreciation mail, fan mail, hate mail or insightful feedback email, one thing is for common, they all contain exceptionally good feedback. It is true that you might get more fan mails when you compose these excellent articles but criticisms will give you great insight as well. They can give you ideas for sequels of your highly successful or controversial articles. You may also receive requests for extra clarification of some points you have previously covered in any article. You can use videos, infographics or tutorials or even a follow up article to answer these points further.
Alerts and Mentions
If set up properly your email inbox can be your one stop shop where you receive your alerts, mentions and even your social media updates. You can set up Google alerts to receive regular updates about the fields you are interested in.