You are asking your website visitor to hand over money. On what grounds? In e-commerce, trust is the key to any effective long-term content marketing strategy. People need to believe that you are a legitimate business. They need to know that you are able to solve customer or client problems and that you will handle
You are asking your website visitor to hand over money. On what grounds? In e-commerce, trust is the key to any effective long-term content marketing strategy.
People need to believe that you are a legitimate business.
They need to know that you are able to solve customer or client problems and that you will handle their financial information, the personal details and their purchases with integrity.
Building Trust and Authority with Content Marketing
Because you don’t ordinarily meet the customer face to face, where first impressions are three dimensional, you have to recreate an environment where visitor trust can still be cultivated through the content you put out.
Marketing Strategy Example from the Real World
Meet Katie DeCicco of Celebration Sauna’s.
I enjoy sharing content marketing strategy examples that have been successful success of other small business and I enjoy being part of that success. Celebration Sauna’s is one such success story that’s worth mentioning.
It’s a one-woman show that has utilised the talent of freelancers to grow its online store through a content and web marketing strategy that generates user trust. It’s also a small business online that is already turning over a very good profit in the first twelve months.
For the uninitiated, Infrared Saunas essentially manufacture body heat, charging the body with its own energy in a way that can have a profound effect in overall body health. Katie’s target market is typically 40 up to 75-year-old men and women who are health conscience or have a health problem.
As a relatively new industry and technology site visitors need to be educated and informed about this new line of sauna kits.
What were the Content Marketing Strategies used to build trust and enthusiasm for her Sauna Kits?
It’s one thing to theorize about content marketing and the e-books abound. But it’s quite another thing to see how it works in practice by everyday business.
1. Marketing Strategy Example: Honest Information
First, Celebration Sauna’s emphasises honest information in their Content Marketing Plan. As Katie put it, “I sell the truth.”
In this case, Katie
Provided authoritative content and links to medical documentation to back up sauna kit claims
Made herself contactable so customers could choose the right infrared sauna for their space
Provided assistance to those who were battling serious chronic health conditions by offering prescription options for durable medical equipment.
Assisted Customers with health insurance submissions or medical tax deductions.
What kind of person does that? One who cares about the product they sell and demonstrates that by writing honest content at every turn in the sales process.
With such a high priced item being offered online by a relatively unknown brand, people are not going to hand over their cash without some serious trust going on.
Be Honest in your Content Marketing Strategy. Be Transparent. Be contactable. If you want to win user trust your content should state clearly what you offer, what its true benefits are and how they can be verified.
Citing authoritative information elsewhere puts you in good company. Who are the authorities in your industry? Are they government? Brands with excellent reputations? Medical?
How can you incorporate their authority in to your content?
2. Marketing Strategy Example: Answering Questions Before they are Asked
Katie also took the initiative in answering typical customer questions before they were asked. At each step of the sales process, Katie asked herself, “What would I want to know at this point in the transaction”? and created a content marketing strategy to answer the question.
For Celebration Sauna’s, asking the question, “Which sauna should I choose”, immediately leads to a whole bunch of questions like:
How much space do I have? Will it fit?
What are the electrical requirements?
What is my budget?
What accessories does my future sauna come with?
What is the warranty?
What’s the shipping cost?
How will I assemble it?
Katie made this process even easier by providing buyers with a comparison of similar sized saunas by price. The sauna kit product description is used as an opportunity to answer as many question as possible.
This has the added bonus of keeping the site visitor on the page so they don’t have to trundle all over the website to find additional answers.
As a result of this kind of customer focus, buyers are able to complete the sale in as little as 4 clicks.
When I asked her about the kind of follow-up she provided, Katie said,
“I congratulate my customers on their smart purchase. I send follow up emails thanking them for their purchase and provide details on what to expect in shipping along with an e-copy of the assembly manual and fast links to their sauna kit product page.
Within 48 hours tracking information is sent.”
As part of her after sales content, Katie also sends out an article containing best practices and tips for getting the most out of their new infrared sauna. When all is said and done, then, and only then, does Katie ask for a review.
Katie’s web marketing strategy isn’t just good customer or client relations. Its also great marketing.
Being able to narrow down all the buyer options quickly is key. Answering as many questions on one page as possible enables the customer to site back and just look at the sauna kit product, imagine the product and enjoy the very idea of it.
What questions would yo be asking about your product or service as a visitor? How can you incorporate them in to your sales, service or product page?
3. Using a Blog and Social Media to Initiate Buyer Interest
Social Media and your blog writing are an essential part of any Content Marketing Strategy as a way for your prospects to get to know you.
They expose more of your personality and the personality of your business.
Celebration Sauna’s took advantage of this opportunity via their blog by writing more detailed articles that answer additional questions for prospective buyers.
They also use social media to promote their blog content and articles to a wider audience. Linkedin is used to establish and attach credibility to a real human and make new connections.
Facebook, Linkedin, Google Plus and Pinterest are also utilized as a way of promoting articles and documentation from others in adjacent health related niches.
So far, Linkedin and Twitter the easiest have proved the most effective Content Marketing Strategy in establishing mutual connections willing to promote their blog articles and mentions.
In terms of SEO, they use their blog to dedicate pages for specific keywords in the search engines that are educational and entertaining. This has resulted in some good rankings in as little as seven days.
Social Media is not a dumping ground for links. It’s a place where you can really engage your target audience in a way that makes or breaks trust.
Many think no one is reading the stuff anyway – so who cares? People are reading it.
use your Social Media wisely. Find out which Medium brings the best engagement and have something to contribute to the conversation.
Ask: Where do you visitors hang out online? What examples can you find of effective an content marketing strategy that would work in your niche on Social Media?
What Katie Said Next – Some Additional Inspiration
katie deciccoI asked Katie to give me some web marketing tips that might encourage other small business to start an e-commerce business. Here is what Katie said.
“Start talking about what you want to do and why you want to do it. Chronicle your professional journey and build a fan base and connections. Help others on their journey. You will need them to succeed wherever you end up. In marketing online: Find the best in your industry.
Take a good look at what they are doing right, doing wrong and what you can do different.
Plan for success and duplicate the huge successes in navigation and conversion funnelling from publicly traded companies. Use fortune 500 contractors to gain the persona of the biggest, bigger than big expert in your industry.
If you website doesn’t shoot for more than what your competitors offer , you haven’t dreamed big enough.”