Congrats! Your marketing team has finally invested in content marketing. Your writers are busy creating great content, your editorial calendar is in full swing, and your blog, resources pages, social profiles, and guest posts are getting published on the reg. But still, conversions are lagging behind where you thought they’d be. That’s because in developing your online content strategy, you overlooked one of the most valuable touchpoints in your customer’s journey: offline interactions.
Even in today’s age of hashtags, newsfeeds, and smartphones, offline interactions still matter. And they matter a lot! From in-store product displays, to events, and even phone calls, here are some examples to help get you thinking about YOUR customers’ offline touchpoints and how you can convert them with great content.
1. Conferences and Events
Conferences and events are great opportunities to meet and talk with your current and prospective customers. These interactions are less about closing sales and more about showing people who you are and what your company is about. It’s also a great opportunity to use your branded content. If your company has a booth at the event, scrap the brochures and free pens for captivating video demos running on a screen in the background or set up iPads to give your customers a truly interactive content experience.
2. Send Them Some Mail
It wasn’t that long ago that it was easier to get your message seen by sending an email as opposed to postal mail. Well, now the opposite is true. Email inboxes are more crowded than ever, so if you want your content to break through the clutter, make sure you’re collecting postal addresses and sending your customers traditional mail. I’m not talking the boring white envelopes with autogenerated address labels. Use unique packaging, high quality color printing, personalized notes, and handwritten names and addresses. Invest the time and money into the quality of your mail and your customers won’t be able to resist opening up your content.
3. On-Hold Phone Recordings
One of the most engaged interactions you’ll have with your customer is when they’re on the phone waiting for your assistance. Customers typically will only call in to a business when they need help or they’re pissed off, so use that on-hold time to turn a negative into a positive. Swap the cheesy hold music for recordings of your most helpful content to introduce your brand, help customers solve their problems, and maybe diffuse an ugly situation before it even starts.
4. At the Point of Purchase
Your customer is in your store. They’re looking at your products, holding them, trying them on, and figuring out which one to buy. Now is the perfect time to introduce visual buying guides, product comparisons, and unbiased reviews. This is the closest your customers are going to get to buying your products, so your job is to empower them with the content they need to make the right decision.
Achieving Content Marketing Confluence
As digital marketers, we need to remember how costly it can be to ignore what’s happening offline. Your online content strategy can only do so much unless you’re fully aligned with the whole marketing team, sales department, customer service reps, and product managers to leverage each others’ insight and assets for maximum impact. To get started on the online-offline content integration, follow these 5 steps:
1. Schedule a meeting with members from each team to create a map of all the touchpoints your customer may have on the journey to discovering and purchasing your brand’s products or services.
2. Examine the points with low conversion rates or high dropoff rates and brainstorm how content can assist there.
3. Look at where online content is performing really well and see if there’s an offline point that it can translate to.
4. Schedule reviews of this process in your ongoing meetings. Constantly be measuring, iterating, and improving.
5. Oh, and keep creating great content. That is, after all, what marketing is all about.