Business professor and author Clayton Christensen once noted that, “Without a good question, a good answer has no place to go.” Likewise, without a good question, your content and your customers will have no place to go, either!
To get started on the right track, you will want to answer the basic questions, like—who is your audience, what are their roadblocks, and what actions are you trying to inspire? But, once you have the basic questions clarified, what are some of the questions you should ask so that you and your band of merry muses consistently deliver exceptional content?
1). What content will your audience ABSOLUTELY LOVE?
Thanks to the Facebook “Like” button and the Amazon 5 star system, we have collectively bought into a scoring system of predictable mediocrity. Do you secretly pat yourself on the back when one of your posts gets hundreds of likes, or a reviewer gives your book 5 stars, or your video gets thousands or maybe even millions of views? I don’t want to discourage you—but doesn’t this remind you a little bit of the stars and smiley faces you received—in FIRST GRADE? I don’t know—maybe we all secretly miss the simplicity and innocence of first grade, which is why we respond so well to all of the instant feedback?
Ready or not, it’s time to graduate beyond smiley-face marketing metrics. But if stars and Likes and views aren’t the success metric for compelling content, how do we know CONTENT LOVE when we see it? At the top of mountain, tattoos, costumes, and crowds of people milling about are certainly some excellent indicators of Customer LUV.
Admittedly, few brands get to the tattoo phase—but it’s important to know what greatness can look like. Viral shares, e-mails, recommendations, and heartfelt testimonials are also miles ahead of that little blue LIKE button. Of course in business, it’s not bad to track content love back to sales! Be honest—is your content pushing the sales needle—or not? If not, maybe you’re not delivering the content love.
2). What content will truly SURPRISE and DELIGHT?
Close on the heels of love, surprise and delight are powerful targets when it comes time to point your content engine towards the stars. How many videos of singing Southwest Airline attendants do we need to watch before this message sinks in?
What can you do to genuinely surprise your customers? What would delight them? What unexpected little something could your content do that’s never been done before? What unexpected big something could your content do that’s never been done before?
3). Does your content challenge customers to JOIN THE QUEST?
The familiar yet always inspiring opening to Star Trek movies “to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man has gone before” not only provides a framework for the story, but also draws the audience into the mission from the opening scene! Their mission to seek out new life becomes our mission as well. Even back here on Earth, customers like to know that you are on a mission to accomplish something. In fact, because life on Earth can so easily become routine—many people enjoy being part of a quest! If you are #1, or committed like no other, or want their help with something—make sure to let your customers know. For example, how would you like to join a mission to put an end to boring, stale, and ineffective content marketing? Are you ready to move content marketing beyond Likes and stars and views? Are you ready to boldly go and deliver content love and surprise and delight? Let us know if you’re ready to get started?