The sunlight streaming through Starbucks’ large street-facing window casts a blinding glare on your iPhone X’s panoramic screen.
You uncross your legs and switch to the seat on the other side of the wooden table to continue scrolling through your LinkedIn feed while sipping your Grande-sized Pike’s Place coffee: black with two packets of Raw Sugar. You check your Apple Watch to see it’s almost time head back to the office, drinking in every second of calmness before returning to the constant barrage of phone calls and emails that come with being a CEO. Right as you reach for your Mercedes S-class keys, a LinkedIn post catches your eye. In fact, as you inspect further, it’s a blog. Normally, you wouldn’t take the time out of your day for blogs that are more fluff than filling, but this one is different.
And why is that?
Because this piece of content was made specifically for you.
Data driven content marketing techniques
Data is increasingly easy to come by, with millions of new numbers added every day. Thanks to easily accessible statistics and demographics, we now know where you hang out, what shoe brands you wear, what coffee you drink, and even what brand of dog food you buy.
Is this unsettling to you?
It shouldn’t be.
The biggest problem with data mining is that very few companies know how to truly implement this wealth of information that expands daily. Everyone knows how to collect information, but very few know how to utilize it.
One of the best ways to use data to reach your target consumers is by developing a data driven content marketing strategy focused on reaching the right people, at the right place, at the right time. This turns raw data into knowing what content your buyers want to read, as well as where or how they’ll read it.
This can be achieved through the following 7 steps.
Step 1: The buyer persona
If you have access to the Internet then you have access to know everything about who buys your product. An afternoon spent on Google can supply you with enough data on your buyers to know every detail about where they spend their time, where they spend their money, and where they could encounter content.
When discovering your target audience, some questions to ask are:
- What does a typical day look like?
- What is their job role and how is it measured?
- What are their demographics?
- How do they get information?
- What social media platforms do they spend time on?
Feel free to check out our full list of questions here.
Begin piecing together what their daily life looks like and write out their story, also called a Buyer Persona. It’s important to identify their goals, what motivates them, what success means to them, and, most importantly, what their pain points are.
Step 2: Answer their questions
Pain points are areas of either work or everyday life that cause your Buyer Persona problems. It could be something in their life that causes fear or anxiety, or it could be a problem they haven’t been able to solve on their own.
Your product should solve and alleviate your Buyer Persona’s pain point.
For example, Tile is a company that makes smartphone integrated keychains to show people where they left their keys. A common pain point for Tile’s Buyer Persona is an anxiety of misplacing important items. Tile’s keychain alleviates this anxiety and makes their Buyer Persona feel empowered. You should find a similar niche where your product solves your Buyer Persona’s problems and alleviates their fears.
Once you establish this, you can discover what questions your Buyer Personas are asking surrounding the pain point your product or service solves. Keep in mind: there are different questions your Buyer Personas will ask depending on how educated they are in researching their problem. They may not even know your solution exists yet.
Your goal should be writing content that answers your Buyer Persona’s questions at every stage of their path to buying your product. Offering educational, non-sales sounding articles not only builds trust with your potential customer but also presents your business in a position of authority in your field.
Step 3: Keyword data
So you discovered who you’re writing to and what questions you’d like to answer. The next step would be content creation, right?
There’s no use in writing pieces of content that are valuable and pertinent to your Buyer Personas if they can’t find them. Keywords are specific phrases that your Buyer Persona types into search engines in order to find answers to their questions. Your goal in researching keyword data (using AI-powered SEO strategies) is to find phrases that have high volume but relatively low keyword difficulty, or low competition for answers to this query.
Once you find the perfect keyword for your article, the next step is to make sure this exact keyword is in your meta title, meta description, slug, H1, and around 5-6 times per 1,000 words throughout the text. Any more than this look bad for Google who may deduct points from the page’s authority if it thinks you are keyword stuffing.
Step 4: Make a long-term content plan
Once you find some good keywords that you’d like to make content for based on your Buyer Personas, the next step is to cluster topics and keywords in terms of subject matter. In the center of each of these clusters should be the web page on your website that each of those topics apply to. Each of the pieces of content in the group should contain a link to this web page in order to drive traffic.
Once you have your groupings and a web page for each group, you can plan out what order you’d like to release your blogs or articles. It is recommended that you plan up to a maximum of three months ahead since, as you will see in step 7, you will constantly adjust your marketing plan based on the data from how well received your content was from your Buyer Personas.
Step 5: Write
Now it’s finally time to get writing and create successful content. When you are creating content, keep in mind what you know about your Buyer Personas and tailor the writing style, phrasing, and references to them. Be sure to provide a link or button at the end of the blog to persuade them to take an action that you’d like from them to drive engagement and conversions.
Step 6: Distribute
Taking you all the way back to Step 1 when you created your Buyer Persona, you discovered what social networks your Personas are a part of. In this step, you’ll put this to use when figuring out where to distribute your new content.
The biggest mistake in digital marketing is to sound like a social media marketer. Make sure when you are posting your content that you create a relevant and genuine caption that will drive people to click on it without thinking you are trying to sell them something. After the initial post, drive views by finding social media groups where your Buyer Persona’s are and share the content there as well. Make sure to engage with other group member’s posts in order to drive likes and social shares on your post.
Step 7: Analyze and repeat
This final step is the most important part of all for data driven content marketing. After you create valuable content for your Buyer Persona that is easily found on search engines and distributed on social media where they could see it, it’s time to rake in the new data and see how to refine the process. You’ll see that some keywords perform better than others, some content topics catered more to your Buyer Persona’s pain points than others did, or that some social media groups performed better than others.
Gathering this data and conducting data analysis is vital to ensuring your data driven content marketing plan is fully optimized. Your content strategy should be constantly evolving to best fit the needs and wants of your Buyer Persona.
Knowing how to utilize the swarms of available data is crucial in creating valuable content for the right audience, at the right place, at the right time. Don’t make the mistake of creating content that is sales-focused around your product only, optimize your content so that every article drives leads and conversions organically.
Ready to get started optimizing your content using data? Let us track one of your keywords for 30 days for free and show you how you can fully optimize it!
Charlotte Andrade is the inbound marketing manager for SiO Digital – a digital-driven inbound marketing agency that specializes in services for SaaS and B2B.