Customers are people with questions. Repeat–customers are people with questions that you need to be in a position to answer. When you become a top-of-mind company with content that answers vital questions on the minds of your customers, you have entered the arena of the useful and valuable. You become the go-to place. Following are some must-dos when it comes to serving customers.
1. Make a List – Your potential customers and actual customers are seekers in some way or another. They have questions, and if you are service-minded, you will notice which questions come up on a regular basis. You need to be like Santa all year round, and make a list. This list should include the common questions that crop up. Brainstorm for about 30 minutes and this session should yield about 50 great common customer questions.
2. Listen – Put your ear to the ground and be prepared to listen to what they have to say (including questions – see #1). you should be able to come up with compelling content based upon what customers say on social media, via the telephone, by email and through other contact. When coming up with a content creation strategy, you don’t have to pull it from out of thin air – you can listen to your customers. If you value them, you will listen to them. They know this, and look for the fruits of that listening. Your content should yield that fruit.
3. Address Every Question – Adequately address every question, even if you don’t have the precise answer. Even without direct answers, you should offer insight as you address each question at hand. Your content should be a vehicle for addressing questions that crop up. One pool company couldn’t exactly answer a question about how much a fiberglass pool costs, but instead addressed the things that factor into the cost of that type of pool. This type of response will satisfy most reasonable people.
4. Research Every Keyword – Every answer should include keywords and long tail phrases that have search value. This will enable others to find those valuable answers you provide to someone else.
5. Pay Attention to Titling – You should give considerable thought to titles to your content. It is both a hook, and a call to action that compels people to click and engage. Once again, keywords should make an appearance in the title.
6. Be Honest – Honesty is the best policy, so answer your customers questions about any subject they inquire about. This could include taboo subjects, such as bedbugs. If you are a hotel and had a problem with them, or have a protocol for dealing with them; you should reveal this tactfully and honestly. Honesty is currency, it pays off.
7. Talk About the Competition – Expect to be compared to the competition. If you take a proactive stance, you will be ready with content that addresses the competition in your blog posts. This can disarm the competition, and put you in a good light if you play your cards right.
8. Use the VS Format – To piggyback off of the information on number 7, an excellent way to talk about the competition is to do it in the Us vs Them format. By doing this, you can compare your product with their product, their service with your service, etc. This format gives you an opportunity to shine and show how/why you are a superior choice.
9. Write About the Best – People definitely use the word “best” in their Google searches. For content, you can discuss the best place to go for a particular experience, the best product to use to achieve a certain goal, etc.
10. Be Clear and Concise – Make sure readers can work their way through your content without difficulty. This is not the place for million dollar words. The goal is to be clear and concise so that the reader can be easily educated along the way.
11. Keep on Creating – Don’t rest on your laurels with yesterday’s great content. You have to keep on generating fresh new content that answers questions, addresses trends, etc. You don’t want to be a one-hit wonder. Instead, focus on providing great content on a continual basis. You want the person who found you and was glad to keep coming back and stay glad that you are a great resource for them. Customers that stick around and consume content will be more likely to purchase your goods or services. Good content has been proven to be a way to convert visitors into customers (buyers), so keep giving them a reason to visit your site.
12. Be Fearless – Be a fearless resource. By that we mean, don’t let fear drive your decisions about content. If something seems to be good content, even if it discusses the competition or reveals a lot about you, go for it. Let the quality of the content rule the day, not your fears.
To be on top and stay on top, you need to be a content machine; producing quality content that is sensitive to customers needs and able to address common questions in the right formats. Thoughtful consideration about what to post helps you have a steady traffic stream of visitors that find your site to be a very productive gold mine of quality content.
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