3) Develop Great Content Marketing to Entice Your Audience
Nothing I’ve written so far is going to matter much if you’re not consistently pumping out great content that reflects your brand’s tone and positioning. This requires a proper SEO audit of your existing content across all of your digital properties to establish a baseline of your current state. Once that’s complete, continue to work with your in-house SEO specialist (or, if you don’t have an SEO pro on staff, check out Moz, SEMRush, and/or the Google Keyword Planner) to develop SEO campaigns that reflect your business direction and goals and that will facilitate the process of having your prospects find you (instead of the other way around).
Here are just a few ways you can spruce up your content to help grow your email marketing list:
Blogging About Thought Leadership and Product Features and Benefits
Your blog should be the sharpest tool in your inbound demand generation arsenal. It’s your best chance to get your organization out in front of the right audience by honing in on their primary interests and pain points — and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Each blog should follow a strict editorial process (from topic ideation through posting) and include:
- High-Level SEO research
- Editorial calendar creation
- Topic-Specific SEO research
- Edit implementation
- Final review
- Social sharing
- Email distribution
Don’t focus too much on your organization’s products or services. No one wants to be sold constantly. Instead, approach each topic from a thought leadership perspective and then gradually filter in content that explains how your company executes these best practices and innovative techniques.
Lastly, if you want to make serious SEO headway and attract new prospects to your blog to help grow your email marketing list, you should be posting at least two new blogs each week. Recent research suggests you should shoot for roughly 1,900 words in each blog to satisfy our Google overlords, but anything between 1,500 and 2,200 words should place your article in the sweet spot when search engines crawl your site.
Informative Webinars for Prospects and Customers Alike
Webinars are one of the most effective ways to build your organic email marketing list because they offer your prospects something substantial. You can promote upcoming webinars on your website, in your newsletters, and throughout your social media platforms. You can also create dedicated paid campaigns to attract more attendees. Not only that, but once you have this valuable contact information, you can place these potential prospects and existing customers into targeted trigger and nurture campaigns.
Best of all, after the webinar, you can continue to collect new contacts by repurposing these online events as on-demand webinars and promoting them across your site, social media platforms, newsletters… heck, you can even place them on your blogs and in your topic-based email campaigns. An extremely effective method of collecting information is by gating the webinar after a predetermined amount of time spent watching, thus leaving your audience wanting more and generating even more form conversions!
Webinars are such a dynamic content source. Make sure to leverage them to the fullest before, during, and after the fact!
eBooks, Infographics, and Datasheets… Oh, My!
Also known as marketing collateral, these content assets are the proverbial carrot to your list generating stick. These are the elements you’ll want to gate behind a contact form in order to build that list. But if your content isn’t up to par, no one is going to bother completing the form in the first place. Everything from your paid advertising copy, landing pages, subject lines, title, abstract, images, and design needs to be spot on.
To start, you need to go back to the SEO research you conducted for your blog, refocus your efforts on topic ideation, and then work on creating longer, more detailed assets to release as gated PDFs. These pieces should go through a rigorous editorial process similar to the one taken during blog creation and should have much more of a design elements with quotes, callouts, graphs, images, icons, etc. When finished, these eBooks should really shine and offer great information to move your prospects and customers through the sales funnel.
Again, the goal here is to educate, illuminate, and entertain — not to sell. People do not want to be sold to (at least not at this stage). They want the information they need to make informed decisions that eventually lead to more productive conversations with sales reps. So position yourself as a credible thought leader that also just so happens to solve your target audiences’ pain points.
By creating better, more engaging marketing collateral, prospects and customers will be more inclined to trust that you deliver awesome material and continue to complete more forms — giving your sales reps more detailed information to help them close the deal!