Can you convert leads with content marketing?
Isn’t that what using content marketing is all about?
You don’t have to take my word for it.
Let the experts at Demand Metric sway you:
“Content marketing generates 3 times as many leads as traditional outbound marketing, but costs 62% less.”
Leads? For less? Now you’re speaking my language.
Any way you look at it, nearly everyone using social media is utilizing some form of low-cost content marketing.
However, some are doing it better than others.
Why is this?
The simple answer: the marketers who have a plan for converting leads with their content marketing efforts are winning the war.
It’s one thing to post for likes, retweets and shares.
It’s quite another to post with the intent of capturing leads and making that paper!
My guess is that nearly everyone would like to make money with their content marketing.
So, here are five ways you can use content to stuff your pipeline with potential prospects and, likely, leads.
1) Convert Leads With Content Marketing Through Education
Social media users are hungry for information.
Instead of selling them on your next bootcamp, your “amazing” product, or your “stellar” service, teach and educate about how your company can help with your potential prospect’s most problematic pain points.
People think if they’re not sell-sell-selling that they aren’t converting, but that’s not true.
Educational content — like a blog post or tip update — can very easily capture conversions by driving traffic to:
- Your website
- Download checklists, cheat sheets, and PDFs (in exchange for info)
- Sign up for webinars (in exchange for info), etc.
2) Convert Leads With Content Marketing And Smart Segmenting
Different products and services will be appealing to different people.
This means you need to focus on segmenting your audience, potential prospects, and then leads.
By creating diverse content for your assorted audience, you’ll be further ahead in the game.
I still can’t believe how many business are using one, giant list to send all of their emails.
Let this quote from Marketing Sherpa prove how WRONG this thinking is:
“4 out of 10 subscribers reported that they’ve marked emails as spam simply because they were irrelevant.”
And how segmenting can actually HELP your list:
“Emails that are segmented get as many as 50% more clicks than their counterparts.”
Ideas for segmenting:
- Segment by location
- Use the Facebook Power Editor to enable custom audience targeting
- Change your blog post titles on Twitter to target specific audiences (and use hashtags to match)
- ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY segment your email list
- Segment based on interests or behaviors
Please, for the love of all that is good and holy in marketing, select careful content and post accordingly by using your buyer personas and insider insights rather than sending one blanket message to EVERYONE.
3) Convert Leads With Content Marketing … Then Nurture Them!
So someone downloaded your eBook, now what?!
Just because they wanted your free info doesn’t mean they’re ready to buy.
At this point in the funnel, they’re a prospect, not a lead!
To move them through the rest of the funnel, make a plan to nurture this person.
Whether it’s personally, or through an automated marketing process, this is a MUST DO for converting more leads with content marketing.
- First things first, make sure your nurture campaign for your potential leads is in place before giving anything away for free.
- Every download won’t turn into a lead, but you can bet your bottom dollar that no prospects will convert if you’re not nurturing them through your pipeline.
- Most of us have lead capture content, but many of us are missing out on nurture content. Make sure you have enough content to fuel your entire pipeline.
4) Convert Leads With A Content Marketing Conversion Strategy
Is your website targeted for specific keyword searches?
What about your content?
Make sure you have landing pages where potential leads can input their info for capture (but give them some content in return!).
(We like to call that the “give to get“).
Tips for opt-in forms:
- Make sure forms are short and to the point
- Forms should tell the user exactly what they’re going to get by giving their info
- A good capture form should convert at 20%-40% of your total traffic
- (Here are 7 high-converting places to get email opt-ins)
5) Convert Leads With Content Marketing Tracking
What gets measured, gets done.
And smart marketers know they can’t prove success with their content marketing — or any marketing — without tracking prospects and leads through the pipeline.
How many people downloaded your content, filled out a form, or attended your webinar?
Track this information to find out which content efforts are paying off, or have the biggest ROI.
Look at your opt-in forms: Are they converting?
Where to go with your findings:
- Once you’ve got a firm grasp on which inbound marketing tactics are working best for you, create more of them!
- More amazing content = more qualified leads!
Your homework: Take a look at the five tips above and compare them to your inbound marketing or content marketing efforts.
Are you doing each of the above? If not, why?
Have anything you’d add to the list? Let me know in the comments below!
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Brooke B. Sellas is the in-the-trenches Founder & CEO of @HelloBSquared, an award-winning social media management & advertising agency. She's also the Co-host of The Marketing Companion podcast with Mark Schaefer, where they discuss jaw-dropping marketing trends. Brooke's marketing mantra is “Think Conversation, Not Campaign” so be sure to give her a shout!
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