Building Relationships Through Content Marketing
By Amanda Warfield
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You’ve been putting out content left and right – staying up to date on all of the algorithm changes, the new platforms, and what’s trending. You make sure to include a call to action at the end of every post, because you saw some marketing expert tell you to do that one time. But all you are hearing is crickets. What’s the deal? You’re giving your audience something to do, why aren’t they doing it? You’re focusing on putting out content, but you aren’t focusing on customer relationship marketing.
Wait, wait, wait … I thought we were talking about content marketing here? Customer relationship marketing? What is that?
Relationship marketing is less a type of marketing, and more a focus of your marketing. And content marketing is the marketing method that you personally are using to build those relationships. It might sound fluffy, but this mindset shift can make all the difference for the way your audience engages with you. Because when you’re focused on building relationships, you’re less focused on building up yourself.
3 Ways to Focus on Customer Relationship Marketing
If you’re looking to create content from a place of building relationships with your audience, you’re going to want to focus on building the Know, Like, and Trust factor within your content. You may have heard this term before, but have you ever considered how you can actually create content that intentionally builds that for you with your audience?
The Know, Like, and Trust Factor is the basis of building relationships of all kinds. Think about when you start a friendship with someone new. First, you come to know them. Then you start to like them. And finally you trust them.
You wouldn’t tell a new acquaintance your deepest secret the day you meet, would you? No. Because you don’t trust them yet.
When it comes to marketing, it’s no different. The goal with your marketing is to have your audience get to know you, to decide if they like you, and then to decide if they trust you and believe in you and your business. If they do, they’ll become a customer. If they don’t, they’ll either be on their way, or stick around until they decide to trust you.
So how do you build this know, like, and trust factor? There are three ways you can do this: showing up consistently, building a brand, and engaging back.
Show Up Consistently for Customer Relationship Marketing
We all have that friend that we make plans with, and while we may write those plans on our calendar, we also mentally make an asterisk beside them – because you know they’re going to flake on you at the last second.
When you’re only showing up sporadically with your content? You’re being that flaky friend to your audience.
Of course, you aren’t doing it on purpose. Your client load gets busy, and then you suddenly realize it’s been weeks since you posted anything new on social media. And your long-form content? It’s been on hiatus for months. It happens. But being that flaky friend is also detrimental to those relationships you’re trying to build.
You’ve got to let your audience get to know you. A large part of that comes from showing up consistently. Not only does this create the belief that they can trust you, but also just by the nature of being in their feed or inbox or earbuds once again, you’re giving them an opportunity to get to know you. The more you show up, the more they come to know you. (Which leads to liking you, and then trusting you!)
Building a Brand
Outside of showing up consistently, building a brand is important. Now, the easiest way to do this is by building a personal brand. That makes you the face of your company, and people come to get to know you, as well as your business. This tends to come easier because we relate better to individual humans than we do a brand, because we can begin to think of them as friends. You may love Disney, but you wouldn’t think of them as your friend, right? But Taylor Swift? If you’re a Swiftie, you without a doubt believe you and her could be best friends if you met “IRL”, and that builds that know, like, and trust factor much faster.
When it comes to building a brand, showing up with your face is a great start. However, you’ll want to take it a step further by adding in bits of your personality that you think your audience can relate to. For example, I just mentioned two things I absolutely adore – Disney, and Taylor Swift. And if you also really love either of those (or both), you likely instantly felt a little bit more connected to me, this random blog post author. Simply because we had that in common. Including examples based on things you love is a great way to add a splash of your personality to your marketing.
Over time, as you mention the same few things repetitively, your audience is going to build a relationship with you faster based on connections they may have with you. I get random Disney Tiktoks and Reels sent to me all of the time by audience members, because it’s something that showed up on their own pages, and it made them think of me. Thus, a relationship has been created.
Engaging Back to Build Customer Relationships
And finally, engaging back. This one is important. You don’t want to just create content and throw it into the void. Take time to notice who is engaging with your content. If there’s someone whose username is popping up over and over again, head over to their content and interact with it as well. Try and find something you have in common. Start a DM with them. Not because you want to sell to them. And not because you’re being spammy. But because they’ve made overtures towards friendship with you, and it’s time to make them back.
Those Reels and Tiktoks I just mentioned? If I ignored those messages, would the sender ever send me another one? Probably not. Which would stagnate that relationship growth. Remember, a relationship is a two-way street. If you’re only ever putting content out, and never taking the time to interact and engage, you’re going to find yourself on a lonely road before long.
Engaging back, building a brand, and showing up consistently are three practical ways you can start building the know, like, and trust factor with your audience now in order to utilize customer relationship marketing. When you start to focus on building relationships through your marketing, instead of just marketing, you’re going to see a shift in how engaged your audience is – not only with your content, but also with your revenue.
And if you’d like to take this to the next level, and want to use your content marketing to build an engaged audience before your next launch, grab your free ticket to Chasing Simple: The Summit. You’ll hear from 18 experts over 3 days to help teach you even further strategies for strong relationship marketing!