If you want people to be interested in your services and products, you need to cultivate this and demonstrate the value you bring. This is where long-form content comes to the fore.
When you want to generate interest in what you do here are a few things to bear in mind:
- ‘People buy people’ – who you are is as important as what you sell. Chances are there’s more than one business offering the same as you, so sharing who you are is key to making you stand out from the crowd.
- Generating interest isn’t a sale – if you try too hard you’ll turn people off really fast. (It’s like going to a bar and coming across that guy who just wants to ‘score’ – not what you want!)
- Keep your audience in mind – having gone to the trouble to find them, don’t forget them now!
Interest-generation is step 2 in the process. Your potential customer knows you exist so now you mission is to engage them and explain why you can solve their problems. The key response you want from them is ‘tell me more.’
So how can content help you?
Blogs, articles and lead generators – aka ‘long-form content’
Of all the marketing content types, long-form is the one which is often hardest for a small business to do consistently – and do well! This is because of the time it takes to put together and perfect.
When you do it consistently, though, it reinforces who you are, what you do, builds an audience and (via lead generators) builds you a list of interested people
Do keep in mind that it’s a ‘slow burn’ – people won’t read one blog and dash out to spend a fortune with you, no matter how good that blog might be! So you need to stick at it. It’s powerful stuff though – you can build a following of interested people who understand what you do, what you stand for and why you are a great person to work with.
The series I created on blogs can help you here.
If you take time to build relationships by providing great content, when your customers do want to take action, you are front and centre in their minds.
Pay attention to your website
When someone gets to know you and wants to learn more, where do they tend to go next…
This is your repository for all information about you and your business. It’s important to make sure it’s ready and being regularly updated with all of your latest information.
The two most important pages are your Home page (always viewed first) and About page. Products and services pages are in the ‘Decision’ stage and we’ll cover them in the next blog. My blogs on these two pages explain more about this.
Back to Networking
Yes, I know I mentioned this in the last blog, but in theory you can complete all 4 stages of AIDA by networking (not usually all at one meeting, although I have had it happen!)
At your first few networking meetings, your main aim is to raise awareness. After that you’re known and it’s time to start generating interest, and there are a few ways to do this.
Depending on the type of group you attend, there may be opportunities to present. This allows you to educate people about your business, or an aspect of why your business is important.
One of the great things about networking is time chatting to others. Showing interest in other business owners generates interest in your business too, so it’s a win-win. Most networking groups also encourage you to spend 1:1 time with other members, post meeting, getting to know one another better, which has great mutual benefits.
There is more PR to be done too!
A valuable PR strategy is writing regular articles for a publication on your topic of expertise. This positions you as a go-to person of knowledge in your field. Keep in mind that you may have to pay for this, but the long-term benefits definitely outweigh the expense.
If you’d like to learn how to generate great content that works beautifully with your marketing strategy, take a look at our online course Demystifying Content.