Content marketing must be consistent to be effective, but it’s not enough to just keep putting content out there. In order to stand out to the ideal customers you’re trying to reach, you have to speak their language and answer their questions.
If you bring the customer into your content creation process by listening to and answering their questions, you can achieve perfect harmony. You will ultimately create content that demonstrates your credibility and expertise, while satisfying the actual interests and concerns of your customers and prospective customers.
Here are seven ways to turn customer questions into content – and more customers!
1. Is it a direct “how to”? (Can you explain how to do what they’re asking in 5, 7 or 10 steps?)
2. Is it a series? (Sometimes in order to do the thing they’re asking they need to have already done several other things, so you have to back up and start from there.)
3. Is it more theoretical or complex, and will statistics help to explain or prove your point? (A graphical representation – “infographic” – might help.)
4. Do you have case study examples about the issue? (Bonus: Can you demonstrate how your product or service solved this concern?)
5. Do other people in your network struggle with the same issue? Can you “crowdsource” some solutions via your Facebook page, Twitter stream, LinkedIn group, Google+ circles or communities, etc.? (Bonus: You’ll get new content for your social media streams that you can then turn into a blog post.)
6. Is there an expert in a related field you could interview for their thoughts on this topic?
7. Can you record or find a video that shows a live demonstration of how to solve this problem?
That last tip leads perfectly into an example of a company that’s doing a wonderful job of creating customer-sourced content. Clean My Space is a Toronto-based cleaning company that provides residential cleaning services in both urban and suburban settings.
Related Class: Youtility: Why smart marketing is about help not hype
Let’s take a look at how they answered a common cleaning question in two different formats:
If you click through to watch this video on YouTube, you can see all of the text they’ve included in the description box, which is very important for getting your non-text content found online.
They also include a link to their corresponding blog post. That’s great for people like me, who prefer to get our information in writing rather than from watching a video or listening to an audio recording.
I asked Melissa Maker, president of Clean My Space, to tell us more about how they turn questions into content:
"We receive so many questions, it can become absolutely daunting to determine what to write about next. Daily, we review all comments throughout our videos, blog, Facebook page and Twitter feed, and skim them for common questions or themes.
We then add the questions to a large white board, and then each week we select our next video or article based on what we want to do and what time of year it is.
For example, there is no sense in doing a video on how to clean your Ugg boots in July, so although a popular question, we would film and launch that video in January."
Want to create a customer-sourced content success story like this for your own business? Watch Customer-Sourced Content: How to Turn Customer Conversations Into More Customers for tips and strategies.