Your first 5 reel-em-in blog posts.
Will someone find these 5?
It does not matter if you’ve published 10 or a 1000 posts.
If you’ve not published these five then you’re not serving your readers.
Worse? These are the top 5 people want to read.
(updated Summer 2019)
The Big 5 Blog Post
The 5 articles you must write:
- What are the prices and/or cost of your products?
- What are the problems with your products?
- Us vs. them questions and who is better?
- Reviewing the products or services (of competitors as/or solutions)
- Who is the best at _______
There we are the 5 biggest question your prospects are asking about your products and services.
And the 5 articles you probably don’t have on your blog.
Don’t Take My Word as Truth
Play a what-if game with me. What if you decide to buy something new, let us say a new refrigerator.
You probably have questions. How much will it cost? How reliable is this brand? Which brand and model is better? What do the reviews say? Which is best and why?
These are my ‘need to know before I buy’ questions.
Use these same concept and figure out what question your prospects are asking about your products or services?
Marcus Sheridan – The Sales Lion
…If I have seen a little further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants. — Isaac Newton to Robert Hooke, in 1676
And Marcus is a giant of content marketing.
These 5 question every person asks in every industry, about every product, and business are not answering…
These 5 reel-em-in content marketing hacks are shamelessly ‘stolen’ from Marcus Sheridan.
His hour long speech at the Hubspot Inbound Marketing conference in 2013 (#Inbound2013) revolved around writing articles people want to read versus what we want to write. At the core of his presentation are these 5 questions.
Content Marketing saved River Pools and Spas
Marcus is the owner of River Pools and Spas. He began by answer the 5 most common questions his prospects were asking about fiberglass swimming pools.
The short version of his story, during the economic downturn in ’08 or ’09, sales of swimming pools all but dried up. He and his partner heard of content marketing and decided to jump in feet first.
He began answering all recurring question his potential customers were asking about fiberglass swimming pools. During this intense blogging period he and his partner identified 5 types of question that every person asks in every industry.
And he realized few business were answering.
Here are 5 examples of posts Marcus wrote for each question
- How much does a fiberglass pool cost?
- Top 5 fiberglass Pool Problems and Solutions
- Concrete vs. Fiberglass Pools vs. Vinyl Liner Pools: Which is Better?
- A Review of Barrier Reef Fiberglass Pools
- Who are the Best Swimming Pool Builders in Richmond Virginia?
Give Away the Recipe, Not the Secret Sauce
Do you give away everything when blogging?
Wife and I are avid cooks.
Not Masterchef quality by any stretch. Nor is the food gruel from the gulag. We are just amateurs. Yet, we love to expand out palate and try new techniques and styles.
Guiding us along our journey are books by the true masters. Michelle and Albert Roux, James Martin, Darina Allan. and other cannot for the life of me remember their names…
What is fascinating is these Michelin star chefs all have cookbooks and give away their receipts – freely. Ingredients, quantities, how long to cook. Everything!
But, will I turn out a plate of Michelin star quality? Do I instantly become a top chef because I have the receipt? Nope, not a chance. Not by a country mile or a by a copper sauce pan.
What I’m missing is their secret sauce of experience, missing their passion, there love and their taste buds and years of failures as experiences.
Draw parallels with your business. Give away the receipt. Only you have the secret sauce.
Your uniqueness is not the ingredient you mix, or the suppliers you use or the fanciness of your letterhead (although it can be). Rather it’s your passion and own special mix of goodness which makes you you.
These 5 question serve as a stepping stones helping your prospects realise your special mix of goodness.
Dirty Laundry and Dust In the Corners
Discussing problems, openly, is risky. Yet powerful.
The benefits of openness is just that – you are open, transparent and honest. These three are the hallmark of every great business.
Openness, transparency and honesty are the for bearers to trust.
The strategy is not risks free. Everyone gets to see your dirty laundry. You may scare away a few prospects.
The opposite holds also. Can prospects trust a business which is secretive, shady, and opaque?
Implication of these 5 topic
⇑ What are the prices and/or cost of your products?
Price is a self filtering process. You will scare away a few prospects and attract many many others. And your competitors will know your prices.
Being Honest and open has intangible benefits including building trust.
⇑ What are the problems with your products?
Be honest with yourself. Your product are not perfect (nor are mine). At some point in the sale process the drawback and problems of your product will surface.
Create a plan to manage these negatives earlier in the buying process. Better is engineering out the weak aspects. Being upfront will save everybody time and hassle. Yes, people will self–filter, yet this leaves more time to concentrate on the people who are interested and who matter.
Take Marcus’s River Pools and Spas for example. They sell fiberglass swimming pools. Installation requires a crane to lift the pool from a lorry into the back garden of the customers house. Built in cement swimming pools do not have this problem.
I believe it is best to inform (educate) prospects from the start. And not surprise them at the end.
⇑ Us vs. Them questions and who is better?
This can be chart or a table. Listing the features of your product compared to 1 or 2 others. Savvy shoppers already are doing this list with a chart. You are only facilitating the comparison by putting it down on paper.
The chart, cannot be defamatory, derogatory or disparaging in any form or fashion. Or you will immediately turn off you prospects and make seriously bad enemies of your competitors. Always use published facts and figures.
Additionally, there are search benefits. By naming your competitors in a blog post you will be visible in the search result for their branded terms. Which help you get more search traffic.
⇑ Reviewing the products or services (of competitors or solutions)
You must be creative with this blog post. Reviewing a product or service without really trying can expose open you to some pitfalls.
⇑ Who is the best at _______
A league table is best for an independent body to generate. But, a list of business who provide the same service as you do will go a long way.
Content Marketing Essentials – Your homework?
What do you feel about these 5 blog post types? Are they to risky for you? Let me know in the comments.