If you are reading this then I am going to assume you have a business blog or you are at least planning on starting one. If you are on the fence, did you know that companies with blogs generate 55 percent more site visits, 97 percent more links to their websites, and their pages get indexed a whopping 434 percent more often?
Regular blogging has a huge impact on incoming traffic and Google loves sites that generate new content on a regular basis.
But you can’t just start a blog and throw up posts and expect to see your content converting. It takes a special something, a secret weapon of sorts. And I’m about to tell you what it is and show you how to use it to supercharge your blog content and attract new and qualified traffic to your business.
First though, I want to tell you a quick story. It’s a story about a really big boat and a man named David Blair. You may not have heard of David Blair before but I bet you have heard of the really big boat. It was called the RMS Titanic. As I’m sure you are aware, the Titanic infamously sank in the North Atlantic Ocean on April 15, 1912 after colliding with an iceberg.
David Blair was employed by the White Star Line, which owned the Titanic. He was scheduled to sail on her maiden voyage as the Second Officer. He was very excited about his assignment. He was on the ship for her trial voyages and was settling in to his role. However, soon before the Titanic was to set sail Mr. Blair was reassigned and replaced by an officer that was thought by White Star to have more experience on ships of a similar class.
Blair was heartbroken by his demotion. He sent a postcard to his sister and on it he wrote “This is a magnificent ship. I feel very disappointed I am not to make her first voyage.”
The adjustment was a last minute one, and in the haste of the reassignment he forgot to turn over the key to the crow’s nest locker, where the lookouts’ binoculars were stored. So on that cold night in April, the lookouts were up in the crow’s nest with nothing but their naked eyes in the dark of night.
After the sinking of the Titanic a commission composed of members of the U.S. Senate conducted an inquiry and among those interviewed was head lookout Frederick Fleet. During the inquiry it was discovered that they did not have access to the binocular cabinet.
The commission asked Fleet if he would have been able to see the iceberg sooner if he had binoculars. Fleet replied that he would have seen it “a bit sooner.” The commission then asked “How much sooner?”. Fleet’s reply? “Enough to get out of the way.”
I promise to tell you how all this relates to supercharging your blog content in just a minute but before I do…that cabinet key, the key that could have saved the Titanic? It was found a few years ago and in 2010 it sold at auction for $137,000.
In the great ocean that is the blogosphere, there are two million posts made per day. (See what I did there)?
The good news is that these days people take in content like oxygen. The key is to put the right content in front of the right people.
If you just crank out blog posts talking about how great your product or service is then you are going to get lost in all of the noise. Your content has to be sharply targeted and it needs to resonate with the audience that you want to be in front of.
If you just throw content out there and hope it attracts and converts then you are a lot like Frederick Fleet, sailing along in a crow’s nest without binoculars. And with all of the content out there, your blog will surely sink into the vast blue sea of lonely blogs that cost a lot of time and effort without producing quantifiable results.
So what is the proverbial key to the crow’s nest cabinet for your business? In short, it’s intel. You need to identify who you want to get your content to. You need to know the demographics of your prospective client or customer. You need to know who they are and what their challenges and problems are. You can then create content that speaks to them directly and because you are blogging regularly about the issues they care about, they will find you.
When a search leads them to your blog and they find content that educates them and helps them to solve their problems then you have built trust. When they notice that you offer a service or a product that addresses their concerns then that trust converts to sales.
How do you get that information? You build what is called a buyer persona. A buyer persona is defined as a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on collected data from your current customers and market research. In other words, you need to conduct a few thorough surveys of your current and prospective clients or customers.
A well structured buyer persona is priceless so it’s worth it to offer an incentive. I’ll give you an example. When I set up hosting for my website I got a message from the hosting company offering me a free month of service in exchange for a 30 minute telephone survey. So for around $15 dollars they got a detailed set of data from a customer that bought their service. If they were to do that with 10 customers then they would have a treasure trove of intel that they could use to structure their content and find new customers. That would cost them about $150. That’s less than most consultants charge per hour and no consultant is going to be able to give you information even near as valuable as live customer data that you can turn into supercharged blog posts.
So to get the intel to build your buyer persona, don’t be afraid to offer a gift card or a free month of service or something else of tangible value. When used properly, the information you get will be priceless. Also, the more value you give them for their time, the more thorough their answers to your questions will be.
Here is a basic template for a buyer persona:
•Basic details about persona’s role, key information about the persona’s company
•Relevant background info
•Gender, age range, household income (consider a spouse’s income, if relevant)
•Buzzwords & mannerisms
•Persona’s primary & secondary goal
•Primary and secondary challenge to persona’s success
HOW WE HELP:
•How you solve your persona’s challenges & help achieve their goals
•Identify the most common objections your persona will raise during the sales process
•Include a few real quotes (taken during interviews) that well represent your persona to make it easier for employees to relate to/understand to them
Give your persona a name, like HR Sally or Owner Dave or whatever might be appropriate.
If you want to see a really good buyer persona interview, take a look at Joel Klettke’s approach.
Once you have built up a few buyer personas, think of them as real people and write your blog posts as though you were tailor-making information just for them. They will find you, and when they read the content you made just for them they will trust you. And when it’s time for them to make a buying decision, we all know they are going to go with someone they trust.
After you have built your buyer personas, if you need help creating your blog content I am only a few buttons away.