People want to buy from people they like. It’s that simple. There are a lot of companies providing very similar products and services, but what makes someone choose one business over the next? It’s the relationships they have with the people at that particular business. So if you’re just starting out or you want to grow your client base, the first place you’ll need to start is with the people.
Establish your target market, locate their hangouts and get involved! Luckily for you, the greatest tool in attracting new clients and building relationships with people online is outputting content online. But we’re not just talking about repetitive blog posts that remind them of their 10th grade high school teacher they used to fall asleep to. We’re talking about back and forth communication, building in-depth dialogue and increasing your customer service through your content.
Next, comes the marketing. To have a working partnership between your content and your marketing, you’ll need to build good relationships with your current readership, your competition’s readership and everyone in between.
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Remember, your network is your net worth.
Too often, business owners get caught up in the end goal of selling their product or service, and they wind up overlooking the power of human connection. If you’re looking to be the type of business that sustains regardless if the economy is going up or down, then you’ll need to create brand loyalty. This way, your customers will not leave you for the next guy as soon as a price drops.
Be yourself when creating your content, let people get a feel for the real you. According to Matt Petronzio, a writer for Mashable, “the average American adult spends 11 hours per day with electronic media.” Nobody is interested in a hard sale anymore. They want to be associated with something they believe in. If you’re spending the time to blog and put out content so that you can attract customers, try attracting them the same way you would someone in your personal life. Implement the social skills you’ve established throughout your life into your content, and make your customers your friends. So, what are some of the things you do when you’re trying to build a relationship in your personal life? You might offer help, listen to their problems and/or concerns, open up to them and ask them questions. Simple enough? Great! Do those things through your content and create lifelong digital friends that visit your shopping card time and time again.
It may sound cliché, but you know it’s true: when it comes to relationships, you’ve got nothing if you don’t have trust. Editorial content is a great way to build that trust. A recent Nielson study shows that almost 7 in 10 consumers say they trust editorial content, as reported by Marketing Charts. Once you’ve established consistent engagement, people will naturally start to trust you.
Another great way to establish trust is to piggyback it. As stated by Charlie Hoehn, “Piggybacking trust is just a smarter way to promote yourself.” Depending on the amount of content you’re putting out, it may take some time before your audience fully trusts you. For this reason, collaborating with other influencers in your industry will definitely speed up that process.
Make Allies With the Competition
When it comes to targeting the same demographic that other businesses in your industry are targeting, your first reaction is probably to go after the competition. Instead, consider collaborating with them. Your competition might have the same target audience in mind, but their resources and connections will be different. By collaborating on a rich piece of content that both their audience and yours will appreciate, you’re casting a wider net of potential clients.
Building relationships through content is what we do. If you want your chance to get 50% off your first month of Nimble Media’s Viral Blogging Program, click here!
Alysa Scanzano is a senior writer at Article-Writing. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.