You’re in business because you provide solutions. You’ve got answers. You’re the (wo)man with the plan. Let’s take a look at some of our customers, for example.
Create how-to blog content
As most inbound marketers know, success starts with content; so begin by writing blog posts that solve peoples’ problems! When writing your how-to blog content, focus on providing actionable advice. There’s already a ton of content out there that says a lot without really saying anything at all. But you want your content to give you credibility and authority; you can do that by making sure your reader walks away from the blog post with at least one thing he or she can do to be better.
Create lead gen offers that make people’s lives easier
Helpful content doesn’t end with blog posts, nor does successful marketing. You need to convert that blog traffic into leads, and if you’ve written some amazing content, your readers will probably want to learn more from you. Create lead gen content that will help your readers be more successful — at work, at home, whatever it is your customers need.
Source problems to feed your content
You should be speaking with the people on the front lines of your business on a daily basis — employees working in Services, Support, and Sales hear questions from prospects and customers during every conversation. Ask all employees to document these questions and problems and send them your way to feed your solution-oriented content. And if any of them fancy themselves a writer, they can document their answers, too, for a guest spot on your blog! (Tip: As you write this content, be sure to keep other departments in the know. Sales, Services, and Support should be equipped with an arsenal of content they can send to their prospects and customers that answers their questions. This will not only establish trust and authority between employees and your prospects and customers, but for Sales, it could shorten the buying cycle, too.)
Leverage the brainpower of your community
Part of being a helpful, solution-oriented marketer is connecting people with content that solves their problems … regardless of the source. Look, nobody knows everything. You’re surrounded by people that have data, research, insights, and experiences from which your audience would benefit. Tap into that brainpower, and be the one to share it with the rest of your community!
Monitor and respond to social media inquiries
Speaking of social media, your active presence on social sites can contribute to your reputation as a thought leader, problem solver, and all around awesome business. This means more than just monitoring your Twitter stream for questions you can answer, though. Think outside of the box a bit! Visit places like LinkedIn Answers, Quora, and industry forums to see what problems people are having.
Optimize for long-tail search
Long-tail search is a critical component of any well-rounded SEO and content strategy, and it provides tremendous opportunity for marketers that are looking to be more solution-oriented with their content. That’s because many long-tail keywords are centered around interrogative queries, like “what makes a good blog post,” or “where should I host my blog,” or “how to start a blog.” Not only does centering content and SEO around long-tail keywords of this nature give you another avenue to assert yourself as a helpful marketer instead of a pushy salesperson, but it also helps you achieve higher search rankings quicker, and with a more niche market than short-tail and head terms allow. And if the keywords provide solutions to evergreen problems — in other words, problems that your audience will always face — your website will also enjoy ongoing organic traffic as a result of your high ranking for these long-tail queries!
Nurture leads with emails based on their problems
Now that you have all of this fantastic, solution-oriented content, you should use it to nurture your leads! After all, you can’t have a successful lead nurturing program without a full arsenal of content. Consider segmenting your lists and creating lead nurturing tracks that address specific buyer problems. You can identify the problems right in your landing page forms.
By asking leads to identify their biggest marketing challenge, we get a better idea of what problems our audience face so we can create content to address it, and simultaneously target prospects in our email sends according to the problems they need an answer to.
Create apps and tools that help solve a problem
Tools and apps — especially free ones — are mutually beneficial for businesses and their audience. If there’s a problem people in your industry face, make your business the one that solves it!