So when a blog post that I wrote for a client went “viral”, I decided to analyze why it worked.
Last month,“26 Tips to Reduce Hand Numbness for Motorcycle Riders” got 2214 visits, 140 social shares, and dozens of new customers for a 75 year old glove manufacturer. Here’s why.
Writing About a Customer Pain Point — Literally
The first step in the process was choosing a relevant topic.
Based on prior research, I knew that wrist pain plagued motorcycle riders. But discovering a conversation about “hand numbness” in a popular motorcycle forum renewed my interest.
“Does anyone else here get hand pain?”
This discussion had 136 comments in a week, and was extremely active. It turned out to be a golden topic!
Research, Write, Publish, Promote
Next, I followed a plan that will be familiar to most content marketers and business bloggers, but with a twist: to research the post, I crowd-sourced the information from the online discussion I found. It was full of helpful tips from riders, perfect for the body of the post.
I distilled and summarized the best tips from the 136 comments, adding research and quotes from medical experts for context. Then, the post was optimized for search engines.
Finally, it was shared on Twitter, Linkedin, Google+, and the company’s Facebook page — and for good measure, we boosted exposure on Facebook, with a “promoted post”.
Facebook Drives Traffic
Promoting this blog post on Facebook was no guarantee that others would read or share it. But the analytics show how well this promoted blog post resonated with readers.
SERP’s (search results) for the long tail phrases around this topic climbed … and continue to send traffic and drive sales.
Ecommerce: Sales Follow
In the weeks that followed, the company’s e-commerce site saw a 50% increase in gel glove sales, directly related to the spike in search traffic from related keywords and clicks on the CTA (call-to-action).
Incidentally, this metric (eCommerce sales) understates the actual sales that the company gained from this content. It does not factor in conversion on other e-commerce sites or brick and mortar stores that stock the brand.
Content Marketing Case Study: Why It Worked, Biggest Lesson Learned
There’s no denying the tsunami of content that is competing for your prospects’ attention.
But as this example shows, the basics still work. A simple blog CAN still drive traffic and sales. By blogging weekly for a year about real customer pain points, online sales more than tripled (read the blog post).
In my next post, 8 Essential Strategies To Create Content That Converts, I outline my process and come up with 8 ingredients for creating content that converts. But here’s a spoiler alert: No matter what the medium, the basic strategy needs to be solid.
As fellow marketer Harvey Chimoff put it recently, “… the need for solid, strategic underpinning and good marketing discipline never goes away”. This post resonated with riders because it offered help on a topic they cared about. The tactics amplified the result, but solving for the customer’s pain was key.
I’d love to hear from other content marketers. What essential ingredient drives your results? Leave a comment.