The pack included: an expensively-printed brochure, with glossy flyers for each of our ‘unique’ services; a few out of date case studies that went on at length about how great the company was; a link to our good looking but content-poor website that apparently demonstrated how incredibly industry-leading, clever and utterly irresistible we were.
To be fair, this was more than I’d had at my previous employer, but in terms of building relationships with prospects I quickly realised it wasn’t a lot to go on.
You see, the carefully crafted sales messages behind all of this marketing content screamed self-absorption – desperately trying to demonstrate how special the company was without making clients and prospects feel special at all.
If you, like me believe that a better way to engage and build long-term relationships is by showing that you care about your clients, here are six good ideas for your content.
- Be helpful in your content. Shift your attitude from ‘Me! Me! Me!’ to a laser focus on your target clients and their needs. In your content – on your website, articles, social media feeds and newsletters – think solving your client problems first. Continually deliver value in your marketing and you’ll be rewarded with interest and loyalty.
- Be empathetic, and relevant. Show your clients that you really understand their particular situation. Address this upfront when writing your content, before you launch into what you can do to help. Much more engaging from a client perspective.
- Keep in regular contact. The focus of most marketing is to attract new contacts, but the vast majority of companies forget to keep in touch once they’ve made that initial contact. Make keeping in touch a priority. There’s nothing less special than thinking you’ve being forgotten. > See: how to keep in touch with customers until they are ready to buy
- Tell your client’s story, not your own. There is real power in this, particularly in your case studies. ‘Big up’ your client and their successes whenever you can. Reward them for their smart decision to work with you.
- Don’t forget to make it personal. In these days of easy automation, remember the power of personal contact – mix up automated emails, tweets (and newsletter like this!) with direct, personal contact from you to them.
- Surprise your clients. Client Jane Northcote sends beautiful handmade Christmas cards every year. Virtual assistant Eli Barbary sent me a card to thank me for choosing to work with her. Jay Blake at IchthusVideo sent me a fairy cake, timed to arrive at the time of our first Skype call! They all know how to make a girl feel special.
Building strong client relationships through your marketing is no different to developing any other relationship. Be authentic. Help, don’t yell. Prove that you care.