During my research about building Calendar.ly, I have surveyed hundreds of Content Creator professionals, sales, editors, copywriters, marketers in general about a very specific question:
"What is your biggest problem when creating content for your social profiles and blogs?"
In the image below, you almost can clearly read it: "Finding time to create content"
Here are some quotes from real answers from real Content Creators surveyed:
Finding the time to schedule, research, and post to all platforms.
Time to create and manage
Time (lack of)
Finding time to regularly publish. Curating content.
And the list goes on and on.
There are certainly many challenges that we all face every day as professionals. Time, or lack of it, is the most complex among all.
Time is the most scarce of all resources in the universe. No doubt it is difficult to find time to do stuff.
How do we find TIME?
Well, it is easy: P R I O R A T I Z A T I O N.
Actually, not that easy really. Prioritizing is acknowledging we will not achieve everything we would like, BUT we will achieve those things we have committed to; if we have prioritized correctly, of course.
How to prioritize correctly?
By defining very clearly what our Objectives and Goals are.
Here is where it gets really interesting. Every business wants to sell more, that is a very simple tangible objective. How much more? well, a 20% increase in Year on Year (YoY) sales, for example. That would be a simple goal.
As marketers, content creators, social media managers, etc we don't sell products directly. We influence people's opinion in order to make our products and services appealing to them. Therefore, we need to find "proxies" that let us measure how convincing our content is. The more convincing, the higher the "purchase intent" a blog reader, or follower on social media will have. This will for sure impact positively the more general company goal of increasing sales by 20% YoY.
What do I mean by proxies?
A proxy, in this case, is an action a user takes which we can surely tie to an increase in purchase intent. These proxies will help us identify which users are closer to the purchase moment.
A simple way to identify how "convincing we are" is by directly talking to our users. There are tools and companies that help you "talk to your users" in a scalable manner. You certainly don't want to actually talk to each of your users, even though I would recommend it every now and then!
Measuring Purchase Intent
Tools such as typeform.com or surveymonkey.com help create great surveys that can be completed easily by users. In these surveys make sure to ask the users if the would be willing to purchase your product or services, how much they would pay for them, or if they have purchased them in the past, how long ago or how frequent the currently do it.
Targeting and tagging!
When you run a survey, make sure you target your users and correctly tag them - as not doing this properly - will lead you to incorrect assumptions. What do I mean by this? Take into consideration the user journey!
A user will be more or less convinced of buying your products or services depending on which stage they are in their user journey to purchase: aware, engage, purchase, relate.
If you ask a "Visitor" to fill out the survey on their first visit after reading a blog post; their "purchase intent", measured through the survey, will be a lot lower than a "Lead" who has received several emails with great tricks and guides on how to achieve better results on a specific challenge related to their industry, for example. So make sure you assign correct attribution to the answers performed by each user in the survey. This will help you identify which are the proxies which trigger better purchase intents.
There are other ways of measuring purchase intent, more "implicit" ones.
The information you will find through surveys is declared intent which sometimes is not that real, but still better than nothing. Basically, people don't always say the truth, they might answer X even through their normal behavior is closer to Y.
Through Analytics you can also infer how well convinced your users (potential costumers) are in each stage of the purchase journey. For example, you could measure trial sign-ups, subscriptions to your blog, returning visits, contacts to sales teams, etc, etc. If you want to go deeper into these topics I suggest you head to this blog post: https://www.kaushik.net/avinash/see-think-do-content-marketing-measurement-business-framework/
Putting all the pieces together
As you can see this is not an easy walk in the park, there are several tools you need to use, frameworks you need to understand and deeply adopt in your organization, dashboards, and processes to be agreed and created.
The main point here is: what are the main interactions your users will take with your brand/business on social media which will put them right in the state of mind where they will purchase your services or products?
If you clearly identify a few of these actions, then you will for sure have time to create content that triggers these actions, because everyone in your business knows that they are relevant triggers of higher purchase intent. As you can see, time is a function of impact. If you cannot translate your content creation activities into impactful triggers of purchase intent, you will never have enough time to deliver great content.
Go and brainstorm, read the frameworks, exchange with your colleagues, do surveys and research, measure and find those triggers. Once you get there, keep on optimizing the content that delivers good long term purchase intent and always stay curious, there will be new triggers, new behaviors, new social media outlets out there which can deliver greater success opportunities.
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