Now more than ever, we're surrounded by media, OTT insertions, marketing bots and AI algorithms trying to find the shortest route to your spending triggers. But the truth is that more and more consumers see your messaging as nothing more than a sales pitch. Consumer want more than simply beautiful photos and lush copywriting – they want an education.
"Content is king" – if I read this from one more guru in their "new year's marketing trends that will shock you!" post, I'm going to eat a fucking bullet. Much like responsive design, if you don't know (and are implementing) it already, then you need to be reading someone else. I can't throw you a rope. That said, we need to make content into something that:
Creates a thorough understanding not only of your services, but what the consumer should be looking for.
“Opens the kimono” to offer education in a transparent way, even advocating they seek out your competitors for comparison. If what you offer is that good – they'll return; and with a built-in sense of loyalty.
Creates a sense that you WANT user feedback, and shows your ongoing willingness (within your contextual marketing) that you're seeking to further refine your education.
Crafts the perception that problems can be uniquely solved with your service.
Shows both the pros and cons of your products.
Spotlights the future growth or roadmap of said products/services. Many people (both B2C, B2B, B2E, and others) often hold great confidence in brands that show they intend to evolve their products regardless of the point at which you purchase. This, done well, will also create a sense of urgency that NOW is the time to be part of "X."
Holds the consumer's hand — and not in a condescending way. The more you guide them, the more apt they will be to default to you.
A few brands doing it right:
Who else are you seeing online that seems to be educating, rather than selling? I look forward to your feedback.