How do you know what people are searching for on the Internet? There are plenty of tools you can use to see what keywords are popular. And a few years ago, you could even look at your own website’s analytics and see what terms brought people there. But Google eliminated that feature and made it nearly impossible for marketers to determine what people wanted.
Smart marketers know their customers’ research is driven by keywords and specific topics. Despite Google no longer sharing that data, it’s still possible to have insight into when certain spikes of interest occur for certain topics. And once you can know this, you’re able to better produce content that your audience is already searching for.
This gives you and your business the chance to get ahead of competitors on a topic and push the information for your company’s product or service directly to your prospects.
How to Leverage Intent Data
Let’s say your company specialized in providing account-based marketing to large enterprise companies. You’ve already identified your target companies, and now you see a spike in research from one of those companies around the topic. Armed with this knowledge, you can now focus on giving those researchers more content about account-based marketing and even tailor it to their particular industry and goals.
Of course, it would be a bad idea to contact them and tell them you know they’re already doing research, and you have just the solution they were looking for. For one thing, they may not be ready to buy yet. For another, it just seems creepy. Instead, you should present them with information that presents your company as thought leaders in that space.
If people are reading articles about a new technology, write more in-depth articles about that technology. If they’re looking for ways to apply that technology to their own work, write white papers and hold webinars about that very subject.
You can create the kinds of content they want just by paying attention to the things they’re already searching for. Of course, you can just ask them. When someone gets into your sales funnel, ask them about the kind of content they would like to see or which questions they would like to have answered. And then just create it and share it with them.
This gives you the chance to generate content with an interesting take on your service that effectively solves the problem your prospects are facing. As per our earlier example, you could create content that explains account-based marketing, discusses why it works better, and why your service is more effective than your competitors. You can write ebooks and white papers, create webinars and classes, or produce short audio and video lessons, the list goes on. Everything you create can be geared strictly toward that new prospect about the kinds of things they’re searching for.
The great thing about understanding Intent is that you’re able to fully understand what your customer-base is looking for, which gives you the ability to serve them at a higher level. By making it easier for them to find the information they want, you’re reaching them right where they are and presenting your company in a positive light.
Find Them Before They Find You
Content may be king, but Intent is the power behind the throne. Creating content for the sake of creating content is going to result in a lot of wasted energy if you’re making stuff that attract your prospects’ attention. And relying on traditional research tactics to determine content topics takes too long, because you’re finding out what interests people after many of them have already left your funnel. But if you can understand what they want as they do their initial research, that can be a game changer.
When you position your business as an industry thought leader, customers are more likely to come to you when they want support or clarity around a topic. This will help keep your business top-of-mind when they’re ready to make their purchase.
Positioning yourself as the thought leader also opens up the opportunity for a strong relationship. This encourages customers to spend more time with you and to continue to come back because they’ll feel as if they’ve developed a flourishing and beneficial relationship with your company.
To learn more about using Intent to improve your content marketing, request an intent assessment.