Everyone wants to make quality content for websites and social media that’s relevant and useful to their audience – but how do you figure out what that is? Nearly three-fourths of online consumers get frustrated with websites when content appears that has nothing to do with their interests. You could try research, demographic studies, profiling…
Or you could just ask them.
Although it seems like the obvious solution, there are a few difficulties involved in asking your audience what it wants. First, it’s difficult to express what you actually want in a website, and even if you know, it’s not always easy to put it into words. Second, your clients might not be receptive to your inquiries; not everyone wants to be bothered, particularly by current or potential vendors.
Crafting the Best Interviews
So how do you find your website audience members who are both capable and willing to help you craft the best, most relevant content possible?
- Send out surveys to your customers or clients asking about their purchase experience. You will likely get responses from clients who are extremely satisfied or very unhappy, both of whom can provide useful feedback to improve your content.
- Consider offering the surveys in a follow-up email after your transaction has been completed, possibly with an incentive for responding (e.g., a coupon or discount code for future services).
- Ask your sales team members about their clients. Which ones would be receptive to questions and would enthusiastically provide feedback (or who frequently volunteer suggestions).
The surveys should ask specific questions about the usefulness and/or relevance about existing content and about potential future content. Ask your clients what they want, what they need, and what they like. Be creative with your questioning; you don’t have to limit it to content that exists on your own website. Also, ask them in what medium they prefer their information: Do they want to click on a video, download eBooks, follow regular blog posts, or read a stand-alone article? Once you know, you can better focus your efforts on what kind of content is most effective and appealing.
Taking the Next Steps
From the survey responses, contact respondents who you think would be receptive to chatting more about their needs and wants. Telephone interviews, either recorded or conducted by two people, can help make sure that you maintain a conversational tone while memorializing the important information you’re receiving.
Ask open-ended questions, and ask about their problems! Your clients and customers want to tell you about their problems in the hope you might give them solutions. When they tell you what their concerns are, you can incorporate them into future content, answering their questions, solving their problems, and providing useful reference material so they will keep coming back to your website.
Value constructive criticism. Don't be defensive if they criticize your product or suggest improvements; make every effort to validate their concerns while remaining noncommittal. Make a list of questions to help keep your interviews on task, but let your interview subjects talk freely and share whatever information they volunteer. Those suggestions may be the best sources of ideas to improve your customer experience on the website and beyond and to help you create content that will engage your existing and target audiences.
Integrating Your Knowledge
Once you’ve gotten some feedback from your clients about their needs, do something about it! Tailor your marketing campaigns toward some of those suggestions, and build your social media content accordingly. Good content will incorporate their specific suggestions while appealing to a broader audience. Chances are content that's useful to some of your clients will be useful to others as well. The better your online content matches your audience’s needs, the more likely they are to come (and return) to your website – the goal of all inbound marketing.
Blue Frog can help you tailor you website and blog content to your existing and potential customers and to become an industry leader online by developing valuable content your clients will engage with and reference again and again. Contact us today to talk about how we can help you improve your content and make it work harder for you!