Though best known as an American businesswoman, investor, and “Shark” investor on ABC’s reality program Shark Tank, Barbara Corcoran is also a content creator. Throughout her career, she’s utilized content to surpass her competitors, even when they drastically outspent her in advertising dollars.
Two key events led to Corcoran’s incredible business success: first, when she started her real estate company in New York, she didn’t have any money to spend on advertising. For most companies, this would be a stumbling block. But for Corcoran, the lack of funds for advertising led her to use the best lowest cost tactic at her disposal. After selling 11 properties within one year, she wrote a report based on the statistics on those sales. At first the report was a flop, as no one circulated or published it – until the New York Times published an article on real estate that quoted her statistics.
Second, before the internet boom in the late 90s, Barbara’s own Corcoran Group was selling real estate online in 1993, two years before any of her competitors entered the digital realm. This would give her the opportunity to translate her content marketing skills into the online world.
Tips from the Top
Together, these two experiences have given Corcoran incredible insight into using content marketing to cultivate business leads. Here are a few of her secrets:
- Make your purpose clear. Whether you’re a B2B or B2C organization, it’s important to understand that we live in a world where audiences have short attention spans. Thus, for any piece of content you publish, ensure that you have a clear purpose and that the purpose is obvious for consumers. Unless the purpose is apparent and worthwhile, potential customers will glance right over it and are unlikely to invest any more time investigating your business.
- Embrace your inner underdog. “People always identify more with the underdog than with the perennial champion,” says Barbara Corcoran, when asked about content marketing, “and vulnerability leads to trust and intimacy, and opens people up to what you have to say.” Unless your business is at the top of your industry, there’s always room to be tactfully humble or vulnerable. This isn’t to say that your content should be wimpy, but be sure to avoid sounding arrogant or too corporate.
- It’s the details that matter. Just as descriptive modifiers such as colors, smells, sounds, and other language bring a story to life, truly describing a customer’s situation and being able to relate to it is bound to grab their attention. Corcoran encourages being rich and personal in your storytelling, which makes an incredible world of difference in business.
What can your business do to incorporate these storytelling ideas?
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