In the digital marketplace, there are limitless opportunities to educate your customers. Are you taking advantage of this powerful tool? As a consumer yourself, you are probably familiar with the influence of education in the buying process. But, did you know that educational content makes customers 131% more likely to purchase from a brand? Not only does informative content provide the opportunity to make a meaningful connection with potential customers during their research phase, but it also positions your company as a trustworthy resource. Educational offerings solidify your business’ role as a shining beacon of wisdom for consumers to reference as they embark upon their customer journey.
A simplified customer journey typically has five stages:
- Awareness (of your product or service)
- Consideration (of alternatives)
- Conversion (the purchase point)
- Loyalty (the customer returns consistently for further business)
- and Advocacy (the customer actively recommends your company to family and friends)
Numerous forms of education correspond with each step of the customer journey. For example, the most useful educational content for the awareness stage is material that enlightens consumers to the state of the field and your business in general, without making a hard sell. Product/service comparison content is beneficial during the consideration stage, as it allows you to guide the conversation while kindly simplifying their research process. Once the customer buys your goods (the conversion), they’ll appreciate ongoing instructional content, such as basic training, suggested uses and opportunities for creative repurposing. Finally, customers that have become advocates eagerly look forward to company updates and exciting announcements. Don’t leave them hanging.
So, now we know that educational material is a must for any modern and competitive business. But what is the best way to go about it? Blogs, infographics, videos, or something else? We suggest employing all of these techniques in tandem for the most effective results. Let’s learn a little more about each method so that we can make intelligent content decisions.
There are undeniable benefits to blogging. When implemented correctly, blogging is an extremely effective way to improve your website’s SEO ranking and drive leads to your site. Companies that blog report 55% more visitors to their website and 57% of marketers say they’ve gained customers specifically through blogging. Blogs can increase website traffic by up to 6 times, and companies that blog receive 434% more indexed pages (a significant factor in SEO ranking).
In order to reap the benefits of blogging, be sure to hire a professional SEO copywriter. Doing this will save you time, money and frustration as you work to grow your brand presence. Don’t forget to use images in your posts: blogs that have images get 94% more views. And last, but not least, try to post as often as possible (while maintaining quality). Companies that publish 16 or more blog posts per month see 3.5x more traffic than those that post four times or less in the same period.
Infographics are a fantastic way of concisely communicating statistics, processes and other information in a visually appealing manner. As long as they are effectively and creatively designed, infographics can serve as easily consumable and highly memorable educational content. Infographics are 30 times more likely to be read than text articles and can increase traffic to your site by 12%. If you haven’t started creating infographics yet, now is the time to begin, as a majority of marketers and businesses now produce infographics.
30% of marketers use infographics more than any other type of visual content, including videos and GIFs. 42% of marketers reported that infographics and other original graphics engaged their customers effectively. Due to their bite-sized nature, infographics also perform three times better on social media than any other form of content. Don’t be intimidated by the vast number of infographics already in existence. Remember, in the customer journey, education is an opportunity to control the narrative in your company’s favor. Be sure to take advantage.
This one’s easy. Use your social media pages to consistently post educational graphics and digestible written knowledge. By now, just about everyone is on social media; it’s time to join the conversation and reach your potential customers where they already are. You can also use social media to direct users to your newest fully-fledged educational offerings.
64% of consumers make a purchase after watching branded videos on social media. That is a crazy number. Again, for emphasis: 64% of consumers purchase a product after watching branded videos. Even crazier? 77% of consumers are convinced to buy a product after watching a video about it. Do you know of any other marketing format that can deliver such incredible results? I don’t. If you find one, let me know.
Need more convincing? How about this: 72% of customers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it. Sorry, bloggers. The top three most effective types of marketing videos are product demo videos (49%), tutorial videos (50%) and customer testimonial videos (51%). Sounds like educational content to me. Think these statistics don’t apply to your business? Surprise! 54% of consumers want more video content from any brand or business they support. We’ll talk more about the benefits of professional video in a future blog.
Would you like a few more mind-boggling statistics to top it all off? 80% of internet traffic is video traffic. Video marketers get 66% more qualified leads per year. The average user spends 88% more time on a website with video. 88% of video marketers are satisfied with the ROI of their video marketing efforts. Are you picking up what I’m putting down? If you’re not producing video content, it’s time to get started.
Events and Conferences
Hosting educational or social events and attending trade shows are exciting opportunities to connect with potential and current customers organically. The most successful businesses around are spending 1.7 times the average marketing budget on live events, and events make up for 24% of the average B2B company’s marketing budget. Why? Because they’re effective as all get out. 79% of US marketers generate sales with event marketing, and 70% of leads become regular customers after a positive event experience.
How about an information-focused guerrilla marketing stunt? Or packaging that educates your customers about the origin and qualities of your product? Perhaps some influencer marketing? The possibilities are endless.
As the facts clearly illustrate, educational content is an indispensable part of any modern marketing strategy. We hope you learned a little more about the benefits and best practices of creating content that attracts and educates customers. Please feel free to contact us by form, call, or email if you would like our help with planning an effective content marketing strategy. We also implement campaigns by writing SEO-optimized blogs, designing memorable infographics and creating video content that delivers exceptional return on investment.
What do you think your next educational effort will entail? Inspire us in the comments!