The bedtime story principle – how to create killer marketing content that your audience wants to read

Posted by Matthew Parker

I’m really not keen on fairy princesses.

Fairy princesses are too pink for me.  They live in an unrealistic world.  I’m just not interested in them.

As a grown up man, you would think that I would be able to avoid them.  But I have a problem.

My daughter loves fairy princesses

Fairy princesses are useful to remember when creating marketing content

Fairy princesses are useful to remember when creating marketing content!

When it comes to bedtime stories, nothing but fairy princesses will do.  I’d far sooner read adventure stories.  Or stories about animals or trains or just about anything that isn’t a fairy princess.

However, I need to read what my daughter is interested in.

Printers need to remember this when they create marketing

Printers who create content based on what their audience wants will create good engagement with their marketing activity.  The audience will look forward to receiving the marketing content.  The company will achieve good results from their activity.

Printers who talk about themselves in their content marketing will not achieve the same results.  Their audience will see this as a direct sell.  They may find the content boring.  They will not engage with the print company.

Here are three ways in which people successfully engage with their audiences:

Talk about your audience’s problems

Have you noticed how people love to complain?  Nothing gets an audience engaged more quickly than talking about their problems.

Remember that their problems may not be directly print related.  However, you should be able to provide services that help your customers solve these problems.

That’s where the second strategy comes in.

Use case studies

Content marketing is a great way to explain to your audience how they can solve their problems.  A case study:

  • Helps the audience see how a solution works in real life
  • Gives credibility to the solutions you provide
  • Gives credibility to you
  • Gives a prospect hard facts on which to base a buying decision

Case studies can be a very useful way to create good content for your audience.  However, sometimes it’s the non-print topics that engage customers.

Provide some off-topic fun content

Sometimes the most unusual things can engage customers.  I once wrote a series of article where I made constant reference to our cat and her strange ways.  A lot of people really enjoyed reading about the cat (even if they preferred dogs).  I was surprised at just how much engagement the cat created.

You may be able to create a similar effect talking about sport or providing a cartoon or jokes.

Whatever content you are planning, you must make sure that you do one thing.

Remember to ask your audience what they want

It is important to make sure that you are providing content that is right for your audience.  The best way to find this out is to talk to them.

Ask for feedback on your marketing and your newsletters.  Ask people what else they would like to see.  Most importantly, ask them what they didn’t like.

But even if you are providing perfect content, some sales people are not convinced about this way of providing content.

Content marketing does not sell my print services

This is exactly the point of content marketing.  It’s not about the hard sell.  It is about making a prospect engage with you.  It is about keeping your company and your services in their mind.

When you come to sell to a prospect your job will be much easier if you have used content marketing.  The prospect will be much more likely to remember you.  They will be much more receptive to talking to you.

Some prospects will even pick up the phone to you.

Here are three things to do now to make sure your content engages

  1. Think of a typical problem that your audience suffers
  2. Create a case study around one of your services
  3. Create some fun information that you can provide

You need to focus on what your audience want to engage with them

I’m just glad that none of my audience are interested in fairy princesses!
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P.S.  What are the right messages to send out in content marketing?  Find out how other print companies are managing this successfully by signing up to the Profitable Print Relationships newsletter right now.  And you’ll get a free copy of  “Ten Common Print Selling Errors and What To Do About Them”.

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