One of the first and most important things you need to determine if you want to use content marketing to effectively sell your small- to medium-sized business is what problem you solve for your customers.
Without this golden nugget of information, marketing your business will be difficult. How will you convince consumers that they need your product or service if you can’t tell them how it will help them solve a particular problem?
The foundation of your content marketing message should be that you speak to your audience’s pain points. Pain points are issues or problems that your customer has, and your job is to show them how your business can address these. Without being clear on those pain points, you can’t create content that speaks to them.
If you aren’t clear about the problem your business solves, try these steps to help you determine this to successfully market your company through content:
Step 1: Define your target audience
You need to know who you are selling to before identifying their specific problems. Consider what age group your target audience falls into, where they are located, what their potential job titles would be (if this is relevant), and what their interests are.
If you know who you’re catering to, you are closer to finding out what kinds of problems they need help solving and you can align your content marketing as such.
For example, if your target audience is business owners and your service is accounting, the problem that you solve would be assisting them with their finances so that they have one less task on their plate and don’t have to worry about this aspect of their business. Without knowing that your target audience is business owners, you won’t know how to solve their problems.
Step 2: Do your research
Before you can truly identify the problem your brand helps to solve, you need to know what kinds of problems your audience has.
There are three ways you can research this:
- Read reviews on third-party websites. Look for who you believe to be your competitors and search reviews platforms to see what people aren’t happy with about their brand.
- Research what kinds of problems the people in your target audience have due to their key defining characteristics. For example, if your target audience is 18-year-olds, a problem they may be facing is choosing which university or college they should attend.
- If you have a pool of existing customers or any other group that you can reach out to for feedback, run a survey to collect data and insights into the kinds of problems they need help solving.
Step 3: Identify the solution
Look at your product or service critically and take time to think about how it solves problems.
For instance, imagine the product you are selling is automation software. The solution you’re presenting is avoiding manual work and errors. As well as providing a cost-effective, time-saving solution.
Whereas, if you are selling healthy food options to families, then the solution you’re providing is a healthier lifestyle with convenient meal choices.
Do you know—and we mean really know—what solutions your product or service offers? If the answer is ‘Yes’ then, you can determine what problems you solve for your customers. As a result, any content you create will provide them with actual value.
Step 4: Defining the problem you solve
Now you know who your customers are and what potential problems they may have, it’s time to put these puzzle pieces together. Doing so will determine the specific problems that your business helps to solve.
For example, you know your target audience is young mothers. Your research concludes that they complain a lot about faulty baby goods. And you know your product is of a higher quality than your competitors. That’s your puzzle piece—the problem you solve.
In most cases, you will discover multiple pieces to this ever growing puzzle. To begin, start with one and the rest will fall into place.
Step 5: Position yourself accordingly
You’re now clear on what problems your business helps your customers to solve!
The next step is to fold this into your content marketing activities.
Now you can market yourself as a brand that solves a particular problem. As a result, your content can hone in and focus around this.
One final thing to do is to research your competitors; the ones who also seek to solve the problems your business solves.
Identify their core strengths and weaknesses using a SWOT analysis, look for gaps in their product knowledge or conduct a competitor analysis to discover content gaps and opportunities.
Set yourself apart from them and you’ll overtake your competitors in no time. Chances are, they’re not taking such a customer-focused approach.
By now, the consideration you’ve put into defining your audience, researching and identifying their problems, and working on solutions to these will ensure your content is the best out there.
Need Extra Help Solving The Customer Problem Your Business Solves?
It can feel overwhelming following marketing advice without a clear understanding of how it all works. But you don’t need to go it alone.
We’ve devised a range of helpful marketing templates to get you started; you can download these templates for free to assist you with your marketing goals, competitor analysis, target audience personas, brand positioning and more.
And, if you’re looking for more advice and creative ways you can start thinking about your business, if you haven’t already then you can take our free marketing challenge quiz.
Alternatively, sign up for our 1-2-1 guided marketing coaching sessions. Our coaching programme will assist you with your content marketing, but with added direction.
Hey, would you look at that! We’ve found the problem we solve.