By Christelle Macri
It is easy to lose track of the human factor in online marketing. Even if you maintain consistently high levels of quality content, the obligatory focus on SEO and other technical aspects of your texts can easily affect their potential impact on readers simply because they do not engage your audience.
This is why every good search engine consultant will emphasise the role of humanisation in your content marketing strategy. People respond best to genuine content which emulates natural human communication, and they tend to see right through bot-like, over-optimised marketing copy. In the following, we review the best search marketing agency advice for achieving humanisation without losing optimisation.
Put your customers at the centre with buyer personas
The best, nay, the only way to do good content marketing is to engage with your audience’s needs, wants, and behaviours. If you focus solely on hitting your SEO marks and converting, you could end up sounding insincere, corporate, and ultimately off-putting.
To make the human side of your target groups a prominent guiding light in your content marketing strategy, devise buyer personas and make a point of getting to know them well. Speaking directly to those personas will imbue your marketing efforts with the necessary level of humanity. Use the Profiler by YouGov.co.uk or another user analytics tool to help those profiles crystallise.
Write stories for human eyes and minds
Now that you have your buyer personas (and know their pain points and interests), start engaging them with content they want to read. By all means, make it findable with the right keywords, tags, and other SEO techniques you have been advised to use, but this should take a back seat to the actual story.
Identify brand-related topics which matter to your audience and build narratives which bring value for your readers while also making them aware of ways your company can bring positive change to their lives. Helpful problem-solving content with high informational value is what will bring you return visitors and, ultimately, customers.
Humanise your stories by talking about real people
As a continuation of the point above, make people the protagonists of your marketing narratives. Instead of touting your product’s technical features and enumerating the feats of engineering and strokes of genius behind it, tell stories about people using it and benefitting from its unique selling points.
You will communicate the same information, but you will package it in a way which intrigues and engages effortlessly. Once you have several narratives that connect in all these desirable ways, you can spread them throughout blogs and social media channels, in text, image, and video form, in order to build up a concerted marketing effort which keeps humanisation at its core.
Maintain consistent engagement levels
Social media offer a unique opportunity to humanise your brand. While many see them as arenas of self-promotion and click-baiting, they offer a huge potential for meaningful human engagement which you should definitely tap into. Take those humanised stories from the previous point and push them onto target audiences via your social media presences.
Different customer demographics will engage with your brand via different social media channels, so do your research and target stories accordingly. After a new posting, do not just leave it there: return regularly and react to the audience’s feedback. This reminds them once more that there is a human behind the brand.
Christelle Macri is the founder of Ebizpromotion, a leading search agency in Berkshire, with a no-nonsense and ethical approach to digital marketing. She is also search engine consultant with over 17 years experience in the internet advertising industry.
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