The modern consumer is someone who can, historically, be characterized as someone who has a constant desire for various amazing stuff. As a business owner looking to expand into the digital sphere, how do you reach your target market? Although traditional marketing techniques and strategies still apply, you really cannot be sure how effective they can be.
One thing you can do to thrive in the digital world is to create a content marketing strategy, which can help you grow your online visibility. When done properly, content marketing can also help you increase sales, save money, and attract more loyal customers.
Why Invest in Attracting the Modern Consumer
Nowadays, most individuals spend their time online to communicate, consume content, and even shop. In fact, more than 2.14 billion are estimated to be online shoppers. This means that the modern consumer is mostly doing their shopping online instead of going to physical stores. This is mostly because of the digital transformation that has been going on for years.
However, another reason for the rise in eCommerce transactions is the COVID-19 pandemic. Because of the virus, several stores were forced to close and lockdowns were implemented. This pushed a lot of people to use the internet to buy their necessities and other items.
Even when the lockdowns were lifted, people were still hesitant to go to stores for fear of contracting the virus when visiting public spaces. This made eCommerce websites even more useful and popular. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, American online shoppers spent $791.7 billion in 2020. This number rose 32.4% from the $598.02 billion spent on eCommerce sites the year before.
The information above shows how the modern consumer has mostly shifted to online shopping from purchasing from brick-and-mortar stores. As a business owner, you should make the most out of these numbers by catering to their needs and gaining their loyalty.
One way you can do this is by creating content that they will appreciate and enjoy. Here are the things that you need to consider to accomplish this.
Create a Content Marketing Strategy for the Modern Consumer
Consumer behavior has changed throughout the years. The traditional content marketing strategies that worked for your brand before may not be as effective for the modern consumer. This is why you need to create a fresher and better content marketing strategy for your brand.
Learn About Your Target Audience
If you want to create and distribute content that is relevant and valuable to the modern consumer, you first need to learn about them. Since you are targeting the modern consumer, here are some of their characteristics that you should know about:
They Expect Personal Treatment
In a world where everything is turning digital, consumers start to treasure human interaction more. People are looking back on the values that have been lost in the process of digital transformation, such as empathy and passion. That is why even with the developments in AI systems for customer service, individuals still prefer speaking with an actual, human customer representative.
To address this need, make sure that every content you create has a personal tone. Be more pleasant in the way you talk to your target audience to make them feel like they can approach you at any time.
One wise thing that modern consumers do is doing a lot of research before making a purchase. They always make sure that they have enough information on a product or service and have identified and evaluated other options before proceeding to checkout. This process is very much possible because of the ease the internet provides.
Through online research, consumers can assess a variety of product options without leaving their houses. They can also evaluate each product’s cost-effectiveness, quality, durability, usability and compare it with one another.
You can help your customers with this step by creating informational content. This type of content should contain every detail and unique feature of your products and services.
They Trust Other Online Consumers
Modern consumers hold each other’s opinions in high regard. They trust each other’s feedback on a product or service even if they are strangers.
Customers accomplish this by visiting online review platforms, such as Yelp and TripAdvisor. They can also read the product reviews available on Amazon and other websites.
To take advantage of this modern consumer trait, you can ask your customers for feedback. Then, include their statements in your blog pages beside your articles, write informative case studies, or think of other creative ways to incorporate customer reviews in your content.
They Like Being Involved in a Community
Similar to what has been discussed above, consumers value having a personal experience more than ever before. This also plays into their need of having a deeper connection with other consumers and the brands they believe in.
Nowadays, customers’ purchasing decisions do not solely rely on their individual interests. They want their choices to have meaning and become a part of something bigger.
To contribute to this principle, you can create a community of individuals who support your brand. Then, start creating engaging content for them to provide them with an avenue to interact with each other. One thing you can do is ask them a question on social media or run a poll on your website or social media accounts.
Determine the Information They Need
Consumers go through a customer journey or sales funnel before making a purchase or paying for a service. This funnel involves the following stages:
As a business owner, it is important that you send your target audience the right message at the right time. Doing this involves knowing the stage a customer is in in the sales funnel and showing them the right type of content at that moment.
For example, a customer is looking to buy a washing machine. They do not have an exact brand or model in mind, but they have a basic idea of what they want. Given this information, it is clear that the customer is still in the awareness stage.
At this stage, you should provide them with informational content that will show them the features and details of the products that you offer. It would not do you any good to try and sell them one of your best-selling units right away because they are not yet at the buying phase. This approach may also seem too aggressive for some, turning them away from your brand.
Break Away From the Traditional Content Marketing Strategies
Before, marketers were focused solely on creating the “perfect” tagline or content for their ads. They mostly busied themselves with the technicalities of their message without really caring much for their consumers’ behavior. Then, they distribute their ads almost haphazardly, simply hoping that something sticks to their audience. This approach worked, but it can seem too spammy for consumers.
Although you can still do this kind of content marketing nowadays, there is no guarantee that it would work. To thrive these days, your content needs to be more tailored to your target audience. It should also be made to gain engagement and to be discovered by your customers instead of being distracting.
Be Creative in the Types of Content You Make
There are different content formats that you can create to entice consumers to support your brand. Here are some of the content types you can choose from:
Blogs might be the first thing you think about when you hear content marketing. This type of content is mostly in text format but can also include photos, infographics, and videos. It can be about almost anything and can take the following forms:
- How-to guides
These are electronic versions of books that are available for download as PDF or HTML. Because this is long-form content, it may be time-consuming to complete and will require more effort than a blog post.
However, e-books are a great way of establishing your authority and expertise in your niche. When consumers learn how much you know about your industry, they will have more reason to trust your brand and support your business.
Aside from including them in blogs, you can use infographics as stand-alone content. This type of content is made to share information, such as statistics and research findings, in a visual way.
It is one of the most shared and popular types of content, so it is best if you invest your time and effort in creating one. Here are some things you need to keep in mind when creating an infographic:
- Incorporate a lot of white space
- Keep it clean and organized
- Split up content to keep information separate
- Use complementary colors
- Use legible fonts
- Create a descriptive title
If you want to grab the attention of your target audience, you should create engaging content in the form of videos. Posting videos on your website or social media accounts will help you enjoy the following benefits:
- Increase conversions
- Get more shares and comments
- Increase traffic to your website
To start, you can create a video where you answer your customers’ questions, offer solutions to their concerns, address your pain points, or provide general information about the products or services that you offer.
Just keep in mind to keep your videos short but informative, limiting it to three minutes. You should also remember to add a CTA when ending the video to keep your users engaged with your brand.
If you are having a hard time determining the type of content that works best for your brand, you need to know your audience well. You should experiment with each content format and see which ones your audience engages with the most.
The modern consumer has evolved quite dramatically throughout the years. Unlike before, consumers are now more aware of their purchasing decisions. They make sure to conduct research and read the feedback of their fellow consumers before supporting a brand.
Consumers nowadays also prioritize more factors in addition to the product or service itself. They now value having a personal experience when interacting with a brand. Customers also want to feel like they are a part of something bigger whenever they buy a product or pay for a service.
Using the marketing strategies listed above will help you tailor your content to the characteristics of the modern consumer and entice them to support your business. These techniques will allow you to know your target audience more and learn about their needs and values. Upon accomplishing that, you can then think of an effective way to address their needs, encouraging them to choose the products or services that you provide.
About the Author!
Marc Bartolome is the Head of Business Development at SEOServices Australia