Did you know that 74% of people choose to do business with the first company to provide valuable and useful content? Or that 52% view more than 8 pieces of content from the company they give their business to?1 Read on and learn how to develop a content marketing funnel for your small business in 5 steps.
Are your online marketing efforts not bringing you the leads you were expecting? Missing out on opportunities to nurture and educate leads?
Are potential customers falling off the radar? If so, it’s time to take a look at your funnel – and we don’t mean the handy kitchen tool . . .
We’re talking about your Content Marketing Funnel!
A content marketing funnel is a system that takes leads through a step-by-step content flow based on the different stages of the buyer’s journey. And taking the time to create one (or more) can help you convert more of those leads into actual customers! But how do you develop a content marketing funnel for your small business? What’s involved?
5 Steps to Develop a Content Marketing Funnel for Your Small Business
1. Learn About Your Ideal Customer
Who exactly do you want to work with? How old are they? Where do they hang out? What are their goals and values? Their issues or pain points? What do they really want and need?
➔ BONUS TIP: Develop your customer avatar(s) based on educated assumptions and real-world info.
➔ BONUS TIP: Do solid keyword research to learn what your ideal customer searches for online so you can attract them to your site and into your funnel.
2. Do a Content Audit
A content audit is the cornerstone of all your content marketing. Why? Because you can’t know where you’re going if you don’t know where you are. Take stock of the content you already have and assess its quality by digging into its overall performance.
➔ BONUS TIP: Don’t forget to consider all your content – not just what’s on your blog. Also include your email marketing campaigns, social media, print materials, etc.
➔ BONUS TIP: Take a look at the content with the highest comments, shares, downloads, clicks, etc. These pieces resonate most with your audience.
3. Identify Content Gap Opportunities & Creating Content to Fill the Holes
Take a look at the keywords you want to rank for, your current content, and what your ideal customer wants & needs. Are there any holes? Those are your gap opportunities. Focus on creating those pieces content to move people through your funnel.
➔ BONUS TIP: Don’t limit yourself to just creating content for your blog. While an active blog provides great content for Top of the Funnel marketing, it’s often the content that builds your credibility that moves people into the middle of the funnel. Some examples include FAQs, white papers, and checklists. Bottom of the Funnel content really seals the deal. Free consultations or assessments, trial offers, and discounts are examples.
4. Revise your Current Content Strategy
Make sure it includes more of the types of content that performs best, as well as new pieces that fill your content gap opportunities. And remember, you don’t have to keep reinventing the wheel. Find creative ways to repurpose your best performing content to really extend its power.
➔ BONUS TIP: When developing your strategy, remember the 80-20 rule: Spend 20% of your time creating content & 80% promoting it.
5. Implement Your Content Strategy & Track Progress
Now it’s time to put all the pieces into place and start publishing and promoting your content! Hooray! But don’t change (or abandon) your content marketing strategy too soon. Get a true picture of what’s working and what’s not before you make any major adjustments.
➔ BONUS TIP: Since analytics aren’t everyone’s cup of
tea coffee, it’s tempting to put off tracking your data. But . . . you can’t improve what you don’t measure. Keep track of your data on a monthly basis and evaluate bigger-picture progress every 3 to 6 months.
➔ BONUS TIP: Most marketing tools that you’re using should include analytics tracking. Pull reports and keep all your data organized on a spreadsheet.
Whew! Feel like this is a lot of work? We’re not gonna lie – it is! But isn’t getting more qualified leads and converting more into customers worth it? Absolutely! So take some time today and develop a content marketing funnel for your small business! And don’t forget to share how it’s going!
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