Written by Katie Daggett
Elementary dear Watson!
What made Sherlock Homes one of the greatest detectives in literature?
His ability to solve the crimes that no one else could.
Sherlock Holmes wasn’t successful because he was better trained or educated than the detectives in Scotland Yard.
His success lied in his ability to get into the mind of the criminals he was trying to catch. He understood what they wanted, what motivated them, and therefore, what their next move would be – sometimes before they even knew it themselves.
And that is exactly where you need to start if you want to succeed with your content marketing.
1) Know what they’re looking for
The first step in writing customer-focused copy is to address what your customer is looking for when they come to your website. Are they there for information? What type of information are they most interested in? (Do your research.) What format do they prefer? (Videos, webinars, blog posts, case studies?) Make sure your website offers the information your customers are looking for and that it delivers the information in a way that is easy to follow.
2) Address their needs
What is your customer’s biggest pain? What is the problem that drove them to your site in the first place? Do your research; don’t just assume you know what your customer is really struggling with. Then offer them a simple solution that will provide relief for their pain. This is the place where you provide your customers with the WIFM information about your product. Don’t focus on all of your product or service’s great features – give them the benefits. Tell your customer in simple terms – “What’s In It For Me?”
3) Show them how you can help
When you offer your customers a solution, don’t just claim to be the best, most robust solution to their problems – show them. Give them examples of how your product has helped others just like them with the same problem they are facing. Use testimonials and customer case studies. Provide details that back up every claim you make.
4) Tell them what to do
Don’t assume your customer will know to pick up the phone and call you, place an order on your catalog page, download your free e-book, or whatever action it is that you want them to take next. Make your call to action clear and direct, and easy to find throughout your website (on whichever pages it makes sense). Tell them to “Call Now”, “Request your free e-book”, or “Order Now” and then include a link to the appropriate web page to take the next step.
How to Become the Sherlock Holmes of Your Industry
In the end, writing effective web copy and content depends on how well you know your customer. There is no way to do this well without research. Talk to your sales people and find out what prospects are asking them. Follow your customers on social media. Read the magazines and blogs they are reading. Interview past and current customers. Create a customer persona for each of your target customers. Make them a real, living, and breathing person and write each page of your website and each piece of content with them in mind. Make it conversational as if you were sitting down to coffee with a friend.
Getting into the mind of your customer isn’t easy, but it is the only way to write copy that speaks to them. If you want to be the Sherlock Homes of your industry – making sales where your competitors aren’t – this is your key to success.
You don’t have to go it alone
If developing a content strategy, conducting keyword research, and writing seo web copy sound overwhelming, you can hire a copywriter to craft content for you. Just as a web designer is a good partner to have when making design updates to your site, a copywriter can help you create ongoing content updates like blog posts, case studies, white papers, Slideshare presentations and webinars.
If that sounds good, get in touch. I’ll walk you through the entire process, from defining your target audience, to mapping out your website pages and even working together with you web designer/developer to setup your site.
Katie Daggett is an expert copywriter and the owner of KD Copy & Content, helping companies get found online, and convert prospects into customers, with great website content. She loves coffee, labradoodles, hanging out with her family, and exploring her new home state of Colorado (but not necessarily in that order).