Relationships First for 2021

To maximize your business success in 2021, you need to look at how you connect with your prospects and customers.  Think of them as family, treat them as the best possible version of a family. It’s about building relationships first.

I recently had an experience on a social media channel that you might have had yourself.  

Pitch forward marketing

Someone reached out to me to connect.  It was a woman whose interests were in my niche. Her message said, “I think I have something you might be interested in.” How could she know that? She didn’t know me.

Being someone who is generally friendly and open to networking, I accepted her invitation. My acceptance triggered another message from her that was a pure pitch.  And it was the type of offer that I always steer clear of.  A business opportunity that doesn’t resonate with me.

In her response, she asked, “are you familiar with XYZ? They are the company I work with”

I responded, “Yes, I’m familiar with them. I’ve had numerous people try to get me to participate in this. Not interested. Thank you.”

She didn’t try to get to know me nor build a relationship. If she had, she might have picked up this isn’t my direction. She took afront at my lack of interest. She lost the opportunity for a relationship. While it isn’t something I would do, she will never learn if I know someone who might be interested.

I’ve practiced relationship selling for years

I’ve always practiced treating people with respect and TLC. This is essential to earn their trust and long term business.  I’ve practiced this for over 25 years. 

Recently, I had the opportunity to participate in a virtual summit where some of the greatest minds in marketing shared their best thoughts for 2021. Marketing giants you might recognize. Bob Bly, Brian Kurtz, Kevin Thompson, Eric Partaker, and more.  

Each had their own version of the “One Thing” to keep in mind for 2021. Yet, they were unanimous in their conviction on the importance of relationships as we move forward. 

Relationship versus transactional selling

We shouldn’t ignore…relationships are opposite of transactions.

Transactions are all about the short term sale. Relationship selling is about connecting, engaging, and focusing on helping the buyer find what they want and need. The differences are huge. 

Think traditional used car salesmen, versus an automotive consultant.  Used car salesman were pushy. The don’t listen, they sell.  Get the deal no matter what. It got them a terrible reputation.  

Our automotive consultant doesn’t show the prospect anything until they have listened to the customer.  They actively listen and then help the prospect find what they are looking for.  

If we have a great buying experience, we are far more apt to return to that business the next time we have a need.  We look forward to hearing from them because they “took care of us.” they didn’t try to rip us off and sell us what we didn’t want or need.  Customer-focused.  

3 Techniques for relationship marketing

Once you have embraced prospects as an online family, you’ll engage with them differently. They aren’t just names or emails, they are people you want to help. For the best success, you need to be very clear on your purpose and your goals.  From there you need to give, be open and sincere, and see every touchpoint as a relationship event.

Give abundantly

Focus on how you can help/serve others. Give abundantly. Information, inspiration, and value. People respond when we give our best.  Focus on connecting with people who want what you are offering and give them your best.

Peloton has this down perfectly. Peleton offers high-end fitness gear. Their focus? Athletes committed to fitness. They know exactly what their customer wants. Peleton makes sure they provide it.  They focus on reaching their target market. Targeted quality versus quantity in marketing responses.  They only want the very committed in their inner circle.

This is an expensive brand with a high entry bar. This means members are more committed. The more we have to pay to access what we want, the more committed and engaged we become. The more we will connect and use the “value” the business has provided. 

Their customers are more successful in reaching their goals and more apt to stay with them long term.  They have a much higher lifetime customer value. 

Be real, open, and sincere to build relationships

If you aren’t real, open, and sincere with your audience, they will know it. In today’s world, people look for businesses that are supportive and transparent.  They don’t try to hide things by withholding or dodging issues.

Customer service quality is paramount in the mind of today’s customers. Let them know how to contact you and when they can expect a response.  

2021 will have continued unique challenges. We have to be nimble and quickly adjust to rapidly evolving situations.  Being open and honest with your audience will keep them with you as you have to make changes. 

As a consumer, I don’t mind that your business had to change my packaging due to shortages. Please, just let me know. If the regional weather or other issues are impacting shipping and delivery, let your customers know.  Customers like to be in the loop.

Social and environmental positions are also something that most customers respond to. They want to know how you’re helping others and helping the planet.  If you haven’t added them, share them via social channels and on your website.

See touchpoints as relationship events

Every time you reach out or connect with your audience, it’s important to think of it as a relationship event. Don’t think list building, think relationship building. Don’t think transactions, think connectivity and engagement.

Relationships encourage a two-way conversation. Invite them to respond and interact with you. 

Be aware of what competitors are putting out there. Look for a way to present your message a little differently to increase engagement.  Keep in mind that members are much more engaged than a general audience.  The easier the access, the lower the level of active engagement.

Businesses that make relationships their focus have the most loyal clients and fan base to help share their message. Their ROI and lifetime customer value will be higher than any transactional approach can achieve.

When I work with clients

I start with a review of what they publish on their website and social channels.  I look for the level of relationship building. Then help them see opportunities to increase value to customers. This always converts to an enhanced lifetime customer value.

How to Quickly Increase Sales by Engaging Women Buyers

Women buyers are magic to drive sales. Nearly 75% identify themselves as the primary buyer in their household. They hold the purse-strings to between 5 and 15 Trillion dollars in spending every year…and that’s just in the US. 

And yet, 91% of them feel marketers and companies, don’t understand their needs. That’s a big gap.

Women are more than female buyers

We, women, are nurturers, caregivers, and influencers. 

We’re the steering wheel of our families as we navigate life. We’ve been raised to multi-task and think we have to be “Wonder Woman,” excelling at all things.

It’s tough.

However, it’s also rewarding. We thrive on those feel-good hormones that we get when we make someone happy.  

Take Christmas or your favorite gift-giving time.  

We don’t want to just give a gift. We want it to be the perfect gift. Something that will make the recipient give us a radiant smile of joy.  

Women buyers are not so different from marketers. 

We have to really know the recipient. Their likes, tastes, beliefs, hobbies, hopes, and dreams.

Some people, like my elderly Mom, are easy.  She always tells me if there is something she needs. She doesn’t shop online much and of course this year she hasn’t been anywhere except to doctor appointments.

My grown son and his wife are another matter. Generally, if they want something… they just buy it.  

So like any good marketer, we have to do detective work. Things like interviewing people and watching social media.  

In the case of my kids, I use a more direct approach.  I use messenger and reach out to their spouse.  

Sometimes they have to think about it.  Take the message I got back from my son…

“I thought of something. She’s been after me for a couple of years to get her some good kitchen tools. You know, those skinny scraper things that take the heat and you can use in cooking.

“Oh, and she’d like a good pair of tweezers.”

Nothing fancy, but I knew I’d do a “better” job at locating what would be perfect for her.

Working with women has been my career

In the spa/beauty/wellness niche, I’ve spent over 25 years working with and marketing to women.  I knew if there was something her husband or one of the kids needed that we offered, she would be the one to bring them in.

Services, marketing, teaching, writing, coaching and mentoring. I still coach and mentor them in business.

Studying the different female buying personalities and psychographics helped me hone in to help them better.

One secret a marketer often misses… 

Women tend to buy differently than men do.  Most men don’t enjoy the shopping process. They need something and will often take the first acceptable item just to get it done.

For most women, that isn’t enough.  As I shared above, they want the ideal gift.  They are the same way with personal products, services, or results. 

They are willing to take the time and dig to find it…shop.

3-techniques to enhance results

Women are super-stressed multitaskers. Every step of the way we need to keep it easy.

We need to address buying pain-points.  Things that stop the sale.  

Then we need to use psychographics and segment marketing by need or concern.  And we need to nurture, before, during, and after the sale.

Pain-points for women buyers

Start with where and how they find you. Look for ways to smooth out their buying journey. Busy and distracted, we need all the TLC we can get.

  • Does social media identify concerns? Hint at solutions? Or pitch products?
  • How do they take the next step?  
  • Is there a way to reach you quickly to get a question answered?  
  • How easy Is your website to navigate?
  • Is it easy to skim-read?
  • Does it answer questions she hasn’t thought of yet?  
  • Is there plenty of social proof and the logic to support it?
  • Is it friendly on a phone, tablet, and computer?
  • Do you use cookies to stay in front of them even if they leave the site?

Psychographics guide segmenting

Focus on her needs, concerns interests, and passions. 

Women respond to email marketing at a higher rate than men do.  The numbers are highest when they are segmented so she gets relevant information. 

Make sure she knows this in the subject line to get her to open the email.  

Due to the pandemic and businesses focused online, it’s easy to get an extra 50-100 emails a day. Getting rid of non-relevant emails becomes a priority. Delete is my favorite key 🙂

Try a psychographic approach to social media.  Try less sales pitch, more emotion-driven problem-solving. 

Amazon and others have gotten very effective of the “if you like this, then you might like this” approach. It works well because it is targeted and it expands the shopper’s options that they haven’t considered.  

Women like targeted offers and related choices. 

While we like a good sale, what we are really looking for is the ideal item at a great value. 

We also love bonuses and rewards.

Nurture

The nature of nurturing adds value to your brand. 

Focus on psychographic interests that give more information or related information.  I’ve seen multiple companies in alternative health from supplements to CBD doing this.  

One of the popular nurtures is to share recipes that support or incorporate a product offered.  Simple things that answer how to use a product, offer better wellness or add nutrition for picky eaters.

With all their stress, women are looking to improve their quality of life.  Your solutions and nurturing can offer that. It also bonds them to your brand. Invite them to be part of your tribe and support them in their journey.

When I work with clients I look for ways to enhance their engagement with women. Powerhouse buyers with a broad network of influence. Message me judith@jculpcreativecopy.com.

For more on psychographics you might enjoy this read.

Wellness – Time is Now

Wellness has been popular among health food and spa industries for decades. 

Now, because of the coronavirus, interest in it is skyrocketing. People want to take more personal control and responsibility for their wellness and well-being.

To better understand what people are thinking, marketing giant Ogilvy conducted a global survey of over 7000 people in 14 countries. 

Of those surveyed, 77% said wellness is very important to them. And 80% of them want to improve their wellness and well-being. 

There has been a huge surge in cooking at home, baking bread, making desserts, planting gardens, and exercising. Things that make people feel better.

“My freezer is where?”

My husband and I had talked about getting a small freezer for a couple of years.  With the pandemic shutdown, it was time..

“If we get a freezer, I can order meat from the butcher and we won’t have to worry about the grocery store shortages. It’s only been a couple of weeks, but the store shelves are so empty.” 

Hubby nodded. “Sounds like a plan.”

“Sold out, everybody is wanting them,” the frustrated salesman told me when I called. “Our next shipment isn’t until late May.”

 “We only have one left, ma’am. It’s a 21cubic foot. Would you like that one?” The fellow’s drawl told me he wasn’t a local.

“That’s just too big for the two of us,” I replied.  “I’m looking for something more like 10.”

Online, there weren’t any freezers available within a hundred miles.  My husband had been in a serious auto accident in January. We needed something that could be delivered and installed.  

I recalled that good old Sears carried major appliances. They didn’t have any, but they had a marketplace area on their website.  There I found the perfect freezer.  Just 7.5 cu ft and reasonable.

“Our new freezer will be here in two weeks,” I shared feeling victorious.

“Well, that’s good then. They’re delivering?” my husband asked.  

“They will deliver to the front of the garage. Maybe between the two of us, we can slide it into place? You’re getting around much better. Or I could see if the neighbor can do it.”

He shook his head. “We’ll manage it.”

I got the emails notifying me of shipping and the tracking information.  

On delivery day…

“I just got a message saying our freezer has been delivered. The dog didn’t bark, did you hear anyone?”

“No, all quiet. It’s not like Tigger to not announce them.”

I flipped on the porch light and stepped out so I could see if they had left the box and not rung the bell.  Nothing.  

I looked up the number and called customer service. After several minutes of listening to elevator music, a woman came on the line.

“I’m trying to track my freezer.  It says it has been delivered, but it’s not here.”

“Let me look it up for you… Yes, because of the shutdown, it was left on the driveway.”

“It’s not here. I’ve looked and it would be hard to miss something of that size.  What address do you show?”

“1625 W. Friendly Lane, Atlanta,” she rattled off the address.

“Atlanta, Georgia?  We’re in Oregon!”

“Oh dear, I could reship it when we get more in.”

“Please just cancel the order and issue a refund.” I felt deflated. So much for being self-sufficient in a pandemic. It took a month to finally get the refund processed.

Why wellness?

I’ve worked in the wellness sector for over 25 years.  I understand its benefits and impact on people. Today it’s not only exclusive spas or healthy eating.  It has spread across all business sectors.

Wellness is people taking responsibility for themselves. It’s beyond trying to stay healthy. It’s an active pursuit and it’s very individual in what it looks like.

Driven by millennials and Gen Z, consumers are looking at more than a brand’s products.  They are looking at how brands involve wellness in their “core mission.”  

A whopping 73% of those surveyed consider this essential. Yet, only 46% feel brands currently prioritize their wellness. And 41% say they can’t find what they are looking for at their preferred stores.

Coping with high stress and health concerns, consumers are looking for wellness options in every business they interact with. 

Imagine if your financial services, hotel, car, snack food, or airline offered wellness options. Hotels are leading the way. Cars designed to enhance wellness are in prototype. Snack foods are getting healthier. Skincare is helping people become their own beauty therapist.

3 Ways to Gain Wellness Consumers

Understand wellness

Alternative health has always had a wellness focus. Hemp and CBD fit the definition of wellness. They are perfectly poised to capitalize on wellness.

It’s a whole lot more than being healthy or free of disease.  Wellness is an active pursuit to take responsibility for your own health and well being. 

The Global Wellness Institute defines wellness as “the active pursuit of activities, choices, and lifestyles that lead to a state of holistic health.” 

Wellness incorporates six dimensions. Physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, and environmental.

Simply said, it’s taking care of yourself, being connected and helping others, and protecting the planet.   

It’s not a fad. Wellness is more than a trend. It is a deeper commitment to live better. Brands that incorporate wellness including social and environmental dimensions, will thrive in the new wellness economy.

Need inspiration?

Thrive Causemetic is a cause-based cosmetic company. Tom’s shoes donate a pair of shoes for each pair purchased.

Grocer Thrive Market donates a membership to a struggling family for every paid membership.

Paskho moved its production of sustainability-based clothing to underserved communities in the US.

Understand the gaps

The survey revealed three distinct types of gaps between what the customer wants and what businesses offer… availability, authenticity, and value.  If you steer your brand into addressing these gaps, you’ll be ahead in marketing strategies.

Availability gap

The product or service doesn’t exist. The survey showed they want to pursue wellness and they want brands to help them.  

What role does your brand play in helping customers?  What can you add or what partnership can you create to enhance how you help them? 

For weight management supplements or gut health, perhaps incorporate an offer of recipes, meal planning, and/or a fitness app.

CBD stress-fighting formulas could share an app that offered relaxing music or guided visualization.

Fitness-focused brands could link nutrition, recipes, or best practices for safe workouts.

You may need to reposition products to better showcase how they support wellness.

Don’t forget the social and environmental elements. Supporting companies that help others or protect the planet makes customers feel good. It enhances well-being.

Authenticity gap

Claims need to be understandable and believable.  People find confusing claims and lack of transparency frustrating. They find it difficult to tell the difference between real and fake wellness products. 

They feel most companies make promises that aren’t believable.  Where there is confusion…trust, and action stop. Confusion loses sales.

Product ingredient labels need to be clear, accurate, and complete. 

Directions for use need to be easy to understand and follow.  

Marketing needs to support honesty and clarity.

Value gap

Wellness needs to balance being a good value for the money, good for the consumer, and good for the environment.

People are thinking more outside of themselves.  They recognize that the choices they make have an impact beyond their personal benefits. 

People are making choices based on social and environmental wellness. Those committed to wellness don’t mind paying a little more for brands that incorporate those practices.

You might intrigue them by a product but if it comes at a social or environmental cost, they’ll decline. They want it to be good for their use and not at the expense of others or the planet.

We are going to see more recyclable packaging, more ways to refill bottles, and a reduction of carbon footprints.

If that hair or skincare product has a negative environmental impact…they don’t want it. 

When your product improves their life as well as benefits the community and the planet…you have scored high in wellness.

Plan for the future

Thriving in the pandemic culture and beyond is going to require planning. 

Immediate plans focus to increase profits now and keep customers loyal.  Trust building is key.

We know customers have more time than pre-COVID-19 to do their research.  They are using it to find brands they can connect with and believe in. Help them find your tribe.

Look for ways to update your content or add fresh content that focuses on wellness.  The interest is going to continue to increase. Messages should be empathy driven now and into the midterm. 

Make plans for the midterm.  You want actions and experiences to enhance your brand in interconnected ways. 

Think about how you can innovate for the long-term to maximize your wellness customer impact.  They have made the decision to live better. They want to buy, are willing to pay, and are looking for brands.

Need to up your wellness game?  Message me: judith@jculpcreativecopycom. 

Intra-pandemic Customer Mindset

We have been dealing with the pandemic for seven months. New research numbers are starting to emerge. Key is the shift in the customer mindset. This impacts our society, our businesses, and our marketing.

One thing for sure…we aren’t past this.  We’re intra-pandemic.  

All the marketing guides prior to the pandemic are out the window…useless.  

GlobalWebIndex specializes in consumer data for marketers. Recently they reported on the changes to the consumer mindset that all marketers need to be aware of.  

Their report is based on a global study, interviewing  688,000 internet users aged 16-64.  They share five key takeaways.

Personal data concerns are down

During the lockdown, or just staying home to reduce risks, people moved to online.  Online ordering groceries, home supplies, virtual or phone shopping assistants. However, when you shop online…you pay online.  

What changed is people are less concerned about online shopping risks.  They are less concerned with personal privacy loss. And less concerned about businesses using their personal data to market to them.

It had to happen.  You can’t get help if you don’t share anything. That would be like going to a doctor because you don’t feel well, but refusing to share your symptoms.  

This is not to say they have abandoned their concerns…just suspended them. They are shopping online, however paying attention to how companies use their information.

In the new customer mindset, relevancy has changed

Things like exclusivity, status, and reputation have dropped in relevance as much as 25%.

Consumers are less likely to want to stand out. Instead, they are looking for solidarity, feeling a part of the group.  

Their focus has shifted to values, purpose, and how brands contribute to the common good. 

For those who sell exclusivity, the challenge will be to showcase practicality. 

Life has slowed down

Staying home, being unemployed, or working from home have a different life pattern…and a different sleep pattern. People are sleeping in longer. 

For our normally fast-paced lifestyle, this is profound. It’s the first time since the Industrial Revolution that we have been “unchained” from an alarm clock.  

We are discovering more free time and a slower life pace. 

People are streaming more and gaming. They are also balancing this with offline activities. 

I live in a neighborhood conducive to walkers and from my office, I see my neighbors pass by.  Over the past seven months, the number of regular walkers has tripled..  

It’s not just seniors out for a daily walk.  It’s moms and/or dads with their kids…bicycles, scooters, tricycles, wagons, and strollers. Don’t forget the dog.

People have adopted more pets. Another healing wellness boost and incentive to get out and exercise.

Businesses should look for opportunities to enhance/support a more relaxed lifestyle. 

We also need to be aware of what they call “media fatigue.” Discover ways to help them look away from their screen.  

Both McDonald’s and Heinz released branded jigsaw puzzles to capitalize on the new trend.  They are using the need for offline entertainment as a marketing opportunity. They have released dozens of versions across 17 countries.

Financially, the customer mindset is more cautious

People across the globe are beginning to understand the impact the pandemic will have on their personal income long-term.  

GlobalWebIndex shares “the number of consumers expecting a big/dramatic impact on their personal finances from COVID-19 has increased by 43% since our first wave of research.”

Discretionary spending will take the hardest hit. The report shares that consumers see themselves as less affluent.  They are less willing to put wealth on display.  

Just because they see a brand advertised consumers aren’t dashing out to buy it.  Expect them to take more time to consider a non-essential item as we move forward.

Vendors of non-essentials will be looking for ways to market them as a necessary item rather than an extra.

More local focus

International travel has come to a near halt.  My husband’s family lives in the UK.  We have no idea when we may be able to visit them again.  

I’ve heard similar thoughts from other Ex-pats. You are where you are.

Destination Analytics released statistics covering through October 16-18. The US is split on their thoughts about travel.  

The number of COVID-19 cases is soaring, those ready to travel is dropping. 55.5% of the people say they are ready to travel. This is down from a 2020 high of 57.8% just a week before.

Locally, our tourism bureau shifted its marketing focus from national to regional.  They promote visit local and local staycations. 

Result: higher occupancy rates than anticipated. More people using local outdoor spaces.

People are concerned about where they live

With the pandemic cases on the rise, people are more concerned with their local environment. 

They’re concerned about global issues. However, they are more concerned with how their country, their county, their town are handling things. 

As we move forward expect to see more local and regional focus. 

When international travel becomes an option, security and health issues may determine a destination over cultural attractions.

New customer mindset takeaway

As marketers, we can expect more shifts and changes.  I work with clients to create the best possible user experience to keep them loyal, buying… and businesses making money.. 

Our buyers are there. 

We need to position our offers as customer-focused and relevant.
For the complete article or others by GlobalWebIndex, visit https://www.globalwebindex.com/hubfs/Downloads/The_New_Consumer_Mindset.pdf

The Magic of Repurposing Content

When we repurpose content we update, revise and put it back to work.
Repurposed content is recycled, refreshed and resused.

Consistently creating quality content is something every business needs to do. It keeps the customers and prospects happy, the search engines happy…and SEO ratings up.  

Great content helps your customers and validates your market position.  However, repurposing content that’s been there for a while, can accomplish many of the same things. In addition, it can also share your topic with new readers.

“Can you update this article for us?”

Requests like this aren’t uncommon.  I’ve been involved with an international organization for over 25 years. Most of their article submissions are by members. There is often a shortage, especially for complex articles.

I responded to the email asking when they needed the article. 

“By Friday?”  

I sighed. It was late Tuesday.  As the original author, I knew the topic well.  The content was good, but it needed a fresh look and an update. 

I was one-week post total knee replacement and had scheduled a slow time because I knew I’d be on pain medications. I also knew my contact wouldn’t have asked if she wasn’t desperate to meet her deadline. 

What I’ve observed over the years…

As a teacher in the wellness sector, I’ve had a lot of experience at repurposing.  You need to make sure the information is fresh and interesting for each group you work with. 

Information and technology have changed. Your content needs to be current with the latest developments. 

Above all, you need to resist being in love with the words you have written and focus on creating/sharing the precise message you are trying to get across.

One secret to keep in mind…

In addition to extending your audience reach, repurposing content also reinforces your message. Those new prospects typically need seven or more contacts before they buy. They need the same consistent message repeatedly.

Repurposing content helps to keep your message in front of them.

3 Techniques for Repurposing Content

Always start with an update. Make sure the information is current and reflects any changes or discoveries. This is particularly important if you’re in a niche where information or technology is rapidly changing.  

Next, consider how the content can be best repurposed and if it has several potential uses.

Republishing repurposed content can expand your audience and get new readers.

Take that refreshed content and look for different graphics or images that are in line with your message.  Consider keywords, categories, links, and backlinks.

You might start by republishing your content as a new blog post. Then look for other ways to put it to work. If it’s great content, it deserves to be featured and read.

Next, look for additional places to post your content. You might start on your website blog, then cross-post it to appropriate social media channels like Facebook and LinkedIn.

Convert it into a podcast or video. Then post it to your YouTube channel. Next share the link on social media or website.  Not everyone learns well reading.  If you convert it to a video or podcast, you give visitors choices. 

Offer to do an interview on a topic you’re knowledgeable on…repurpose that content and share why it’s valuable.

Convert old blog posts to a guide for marketing

If you have a group of blogs on related topics, they can be updated and repurposed as an in-depth guide.

This makes a great offer to increase your list. People are happy to share their email…if they get something relevant and useful in return.  

Be sure to enhance value with graphics, charts, or any other visuals helpful to the reader.  

Some businesses develop a collection of guides that they offer for sale on their website. 

One of the marketing greats, Robert Bly has over 90 published books, many of them still available on Amazon. His prolific writing helped to make him a self-made millionaire while still in his 30s.

Repurpose images/graphics

If your articles use a lot of great graphics, consider repurposing them in posts for Pinterest.  Tweak them and convert them to updated social media posts. 

Infographics are very popular and another great way to use graphics, charts, and other visuals. 

If you haven’t tried your hand at infographics a template that helps you build them can be invaluable.  Google “free infographic templates,” or check out what’s available on Canva.

They are simple to use and don’t require graphic design expertise.

Not sure what to repurpose?

Trying to make the decision on what content is worthy of repurposing can be challenging. Is the message strong?  How could it best be used? Is it current or out of date?

Often as an outside writer, I note what someone closely connected to the content doesn’t see. I make sure it matches your tone, message, and is persuasive. You want it to guide your prospect to the next step. 

When I work with clients, I update and repurpose much quicker than is possible when creating original content. That makes repurposing content budget-friendly. It also gets you fresh content in a calendar-friendly manner.  Message me: judith@jculpcreativecopy.com

Curated Content Drives SEO

Creating valuable content is a great way to enhance your readership and the way search engines rank you.  However if you’re doing it all yourself, it can be overwhelming to get volume out there. Curated content allows you to get more volume out there and make search engines happy.  

In my copywriting marketing, I meet many business owners who have no choice but to do it all themselves.  They don’t have a budget to hire writers…especially good writers.

They are smart enough to know poor content is almost worse than no content.

However, I’ve found in client conversations, there’s a huge concern around how search engines respond to something that has previously been published. 

Let’s be real here…in any given niche, there are a lot of topics, but for topics of value to the reader, you’ll find numerous articles out there. That isn’t a problem for search engines.  They like popular topics.

What makes this work is every writer has their own take on a topic.  They present the topic in a way to share the most value and relevancy to their readers.  When they do this they have an SEO win.

The secret behind successful curation?

You aren’t just sharing something previously published.  You add your take on what makes the information valuable…or not.  When you add your opinions or views, your value level escalates. 

This is less you-focused.  You are part of a conversation.  At the same time, you are positioned as a subject matter expert. Your value enhances with your readers.

Curation adds a bit of variety and an outside voice which keeps readers coming back to see what you say next.

3 Keys to effective curated content

It’s important to keep in mind your role as a curator.  In a museum, curators are responsible for the collection and maintenance of an art collection. 

As a brand marketer, you are responsible for finding relevant topics for your readers and sharing your unique why.  If it is new or little known information…so much the better.  

What’s new or different?

It might be a “we used to believe this but now we know,” scenario.

New research may have opened doors, given unknown insights, or found a more effective technique.

See misinformation?  Can you dispel it and help your readers out or save them a mistake? 

Look for lesser-known resources that your readers might not be aware of or take the time to dig for.  Depending on your niche, these might come from scientific studies, professional journals, or forums.

Look for high quality in what you chose as you are attaching your name to it.

Build relationships with other authors

If I curate, I always message the originator prior to writing the piece to let them know I’d like to share their article with my readers.  Most people are happy to have this shared. 

It’s also an opportunity to develop a relationship and create possibilities for them sharing your information…a two-way street. Or for you to put out a guest-post. 

When there are graphics, check to see if they can be shared and credited.  If not, find a good substitution.  Unsplash and Canva are two of my favorite resources.

Share the review in more than one way

The two most popular forms of curation are short posts and full articles.  

Short posts are generally tied into a graphic and shared on social media channels. To meet the channel standards, they are generally less than 200 words. That means paring down the article into its essence, including your thoughts on it.  

Articles give you more room to explain the curated topic – not copy/paste it.  It also gives you space to explain your slant on the article and how it can help your readers.  Many of these are under 1000 words.

You could also share your thoughts in a video or podcast if you include a transcript where they can access the article.

Whichever form you use, it is critical to include a link to the full article.  This becomes an outside backlink on your website…and we know search engines love those.  

If I have another created article or blog that ties into the topic, I also include a link to “you might also enjoy this article.”  Another backlink.  Now I have both internal and external backlinks that are helpful to the reader…and SEO. 

Be sure to keep the conversation going.  Invite readers to add their questions or thoughts.  I’ve noticed curated articles often get more comments and feedback than any other type of publication.

How I use curated material

I’m often asked how much curation is enough or too much.  Argyle Social, Hootesuite, and Quuu came up with a range of about 25-50% of your content should be created. 

In a total marketing mix, Hootsuite and Quuu suggested ⅓ self-created, ⅓ curated, and ⅓ social conversations and engagement.

Track topics that might be of interest to your readers. Flag or create a file for them. With this resource, you can generate a curated article in a fraction of the time it takes to research and write one.

Need help making a plan or turning goals into a reality?  Message me. judith@jculpcreativecopy.com.

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