As a small business, content (blog article, videos, social media posts, etc.) is critical. Content can help drive traffic to your website, generate leads, improve SEO rankings, increase customer engagement, build brand loyalty, and, of course, increase conversions. But posting on your Facebook page once a month isn’t enough. You need a plan to drive the creation and marketing of high-quality content. In this article, we explore key small business content strategies that build your business.
The purpose of content is to attract visitors, support meaningful interactions, and influence customer behavior. It is a fallacy that content strategy and online marketing is only for big business. In fact, for small businesses, content strategy is essential for remaining competitive and gaining a market advantage. Creating engaging content that is well structured and easily found is key to improving the user experience and thus your bottom line.
The best part is, you don’t need to be an expert to see big returns on your efforts. In fact, most small businesses see the biggest improvements with just a few key moves. So, if you’re ready to get started, the rest of this post has everything you need to implement small business content strategies that increase conversions.
It’s okay to start slow, but you should start today
The first thing you must do is define your goals and what you want to achieve through content marketing. These goals will help you decide what kind of content you need to create and where to post it. Next, take a quick look at your Google Analytics and eCommerce sales reports. Do you already have a lot of traffic on your site but a low conversion rate, or do you need to attract more visitors? Are most of your sales from returning customers, new customers, or a mix of both?
Once you find an area of your online business presence to improve with content, select a single platform and act. This may involve writing blog articles and posting them on your primary social media platform (probably Facebook). Focus on getting your blog posts on your website and company Facebook page. Once you’ve made this a habit, move on to the next item in your content strategy.
Create a content calendar
A content calendar is an essential part of small business content strategies. It is a comprehensive timeline where you establish the ‘what’ ‘when’ ‘where’ and ‘why’ of your content strategy. It is helpful to plan several months ahead, but when you are starting out, try going one week at a time. For example, if you are a bakery planning your content for the coming week, it might look something like this:
- Monday – write a blog article about the high-quality ingredients you use in your chocolate chip cookies
- Tuesday – post article on your blog (9am) and push to Facebook page (12pm)
- Wednesday – Record a short recipe video about your chocolate chip cookies
- Thursday – Post the video on YouTube or Vimeo
- Friday – send out 2 Tweets; one about Monday’s blog article (10am), the other about Thursday’s video (1pm)
As you can see, the theme of the week is chocolate chip cookies. You’ve created two engaging pieces of content (blog post and video). And you’ve posted them on your website (good for search engines) and Facebook page (good for your social presence). Finally, you’ve Tweeted about them to keep the conversation going and possibly attracted even more viewers. As you get used to creating content calendars, you can plan them farther and farther in advance. This will also help you stay on top of content for holidays, new product launches, special events, etc.
Pro-tip: If this seems like a lot of work, remember that you can schedule blog posts and social media updates out ahead of time. This way you only need to devote a little time once a week to your content strategy, but will benefit all week long.
For small business content strategies, quality beats quantity
Before you start churning out posts and tweets however, keep in mind that in 2017, content quality is much more important than content quantity. Today’s users will not not engage with and share your content because there’s a great deal of it. Instead, they’ll be looking for valuable and relevant content that resonates with them and meets their needs.
Write for your audience
Know who your audience is before you start producing content. That way, you’ll have important info about them like their age, gender, preferences, interests, hobbies, and more. For example, if your typical customers are men in their 40’s and 50’s, you shouldn’t create content that appeals to teenagers or young women.
Also, keep in mind that as a small business owner, you likely know your products and services better than most customers. Make sure you are producing content they can understand and that presents information in a way that is useful to them, not you. For even more information about developing content that resonates with customers, check out this useful article with tips to think like the customer.
Diversify your content
Content creation is like investing – diversification is key. You’ll be able to attract a wider group of people with different content formats, and you’ll be able to keep more people engaged with the variety. For content diversification, use similar tactics to the content calendar discussed above. For example, make it your goal to produce a balanced mix of blogs, social media posts, and videos. In a single ‘content cycle’ you might produce 2 blog posts, 1 video, and 6 social media updates. Then start again.
Now that you understand the key elements of small business content strategies, it’s time to get started! Remember to start small, organize a simple content calendar, write for your audience, and diversify your content. If you’re posting blogs week after week and failing to gain traction, consider branching out. To help you with this last point and keep your content fresh and engaging, here’s a list of different types of content for you to work with.
- E-books (If you want to establish yourself as an authority, these are key)
- Video (YouTube is the second largest search engine)
- Social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc)
- Infographics (Telling a story through pictures can be valuable)
- Webinars (If you are great at explaining your products or services, do this. These can also be potential sources of revenue)
- Podcasts (In 2016, 60+ million people tuned into podcasts each month)
- Case studies (One of the best ways to show case your performance)
- Memes (Customers love funny content they can enjoy in an instant)
- Cheat sheets
- How-to Guides
- Comparison Charts
In conclusion, small business content strategies are essential to attracting and maintaining a larger customer base. For more information about DotcomWeavers, small business content strategies, or to get started on your next project, please contact us today!
Looking for more? Here are some excellent resources to help you supercharge your small business content strategies: