According to writer Kayla Matthews, 70% of people that purchase do so to solve a problem. So it makes sense to make sure your content is actively solving, or at least promising to solve, your readers’ problems.
The great thing about targeting someone with a problem is that they’re probably already seeking the answer – making them that much easier to convert to a sale.
People consume content to fulfil a need – a need for entertainment, a need for knowledge, a need for guidance. As bloggers, writers, marketers and salespeople, we’re here to address these needs; we are the medics on hand to cure their individual or business ‘pain’. The key lies in how you get this across to them.
So how can you ensure that your content is truly solving your readers’ problems – and encouraging them to return to you for advice in future?
- Understand your audience. Find out what your customers want and research their needs. Work from the bottom up to build a customer profile that takes into account both their basic demographics (age, gender, job, location etc.) plus more detailed information – such as their goals, their typical problems and frustrations day to day and whether these arise from factors at work or outside work. Then ask yourself how you can help them.
- Work backwards. If you’re struggling to fathom what your target audience’s problems are, try working backwards from your product instead – consider its features and benefits then ask yourself why someone might need it.
- Prioritise reader problems – make sure you allocate more content to more urgent problems. So if you’re targeting online-based companies their problems might be: 1. Converting enough leads, 2. Driving enough traffic, 3. Educating the market, and so on.
- Create quality, well-researched content. Keep the prospect’s problem front of mind while planning and writing to ensure a properly crafted solution-piece that continually refers back to the problem.
- Differentiate your solution. What makes yours superior to other businesses’ in the eyes of the prospect? Capitalise on these strengths in your content.
- Be focussed – don’t try and solve all the reader’s problems! Also aim to focus on the ‘how’ of your solution rather than the ‘what’ – how will you solve the problem for the reader?
- Hold a little back so they need to come to you for the full answer – devise a way to solve their needs without giving away the solution for free.
- Provide credentials. Prove that you’re qualified to help them – explain what makes you the expert, whether this is through qualifications, experience, a money-back guarantee or good old customer testimonials.
- Make it easy for them. Give them a crisp straightforward and compelling call to action so the reader is absolutely clear on what their next step ought to be.
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