Have you ever stopped and asked yourself about the role questions play in your content marketing strategy? Maybe you’ve never thought about it like that before. Think about it now for a minute, though. It makes sense.
We don’t necessarily always realize it, but in content marketing, so much of what we do is educating. And what drives education? Questions to answer and problems to solve. Curiosity.
As content marketers, it’s our job to provide a variety of relevant content that will answer those questions and solve those problems. This is how we build authority, trust, and, ultimately, business.
So how can you make sure you’re using those questions to their full potential?
Let those questions be your content fuel.
Using Questions From Your Prospective & Current Clients
These are surely the driving forces behind your content strategy.
Let’s look at prospective clients first. There is a fine line to walk here when creating content that is really top-of-the-funnel and aimed at those who are completely unfamiliar with your business. On one hand, you want to tell them all about who you are and what you do. You want them to know how great your products are. On the other hand, you’ve probably heard that self-promotion of that calibre can actually be damaging to your brand.
Still, you shouldn’t ignore those questions just because you’re afraid of committing a content marketing no-no.
Instead, take those questions and consider one of these methods for responding to them:
- “X Company’s Top 5 Products for May.” Instead of having numerous blog posts that focus on your company and its products, try choosing the top five that potential clients are asking about. Give a concise description and attempt to answer the questions that you’ve had that way. This means you’ve had one post devoted to self-promotion, as opposed to five (or more) separate posts.
- A product resource bank. Maybe apart from your blog, you create a section of your site that is completely devoted to content that deals with these questions, as well as specific products and services at length.
- An FAQ. Consider starting an FAQ section in which you reply to commonly asked questions and keep all of that content together and easily searchable. This is also a good idea for your current clients.
When it comes to current customers, keep them up-to-date on current trends in the industry and help to spread your knowledge and authority through your blog content. Learn to anticipate questions they might have and address them through a blog post. A good current example of this is the Google Penguin update. A lot clients might hear about it and wonder what it is, as well as if and how it will affect their businesses. Be proactive with your content strategy and aim to educate them as early as possible.
Here’s an example that I love: Vertical Measures is making good use of their blog to address those questions that any client – potential or current – might have. If you scroll down through it, you’ll see that they mix up their content strategy when addressing those questions too. Sometimes they’re answering by way of video, as in this post about Google Local Search. Other times it’s through text, combined with video, which makes a nice content mix, as in this post about how Google’s search engine works.
Use Questions From Your Industry
What are the questions that are puzzling your peers and colleagues? How can you contribute to the conversation?
Depending on how you handle questions from clients and prospects, responding to questions from your industry could be a bit more of a process. Sure, you might know what some of the main questions are, but what are the underlying questions? You might know today’s questions, but what are tomorrow’s? How can you position yourself as an authority and among the first to respond?
It sounds so simple, but that’s what you need to do. Listen to the people you work with – marketing, sales, everyone. What questions are they frequently asked? What questions do they have? How do their roles change the way you might answer those questions? How can you implement that into your content strategy?
Listen on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
Hop on sites like Quora and LinkedIn Answers to see a good mix of questions from industry professionals and potential clients.
When you tune in to finding the questions, you can work on answering them. This, in turn, builds your authority and credibility and helps to get your name out there as someone who really knows what’s going on.
Questions really drive your content marketing – from blog posts to social media content and everything in between. Questions are at the heart, and they’re always going to provide more opportunities for content. Listen hard and be the answer.
Latest posts by Renee (see all)
- Is Video Killing Your Company Blog? - December 10, 2012
- What Painful Junior High Memories Taught Me About Online Marketing - November 21, 2012
- A Solid Content Strategy That Will Be Right Here Waiting for You - June 28, 2012