Onsite Coverage: Golden Rule of Content Marketing: 'They Ask. You Answer.'
LAS VEGAS — When it comes to how content marketing impacts a company's website, it easily boils down to four words: "They ask. You answer."
During a morning session at NACUSO's annual conference Thursday, Marcus Sheridan, founder of The Sales Lion, a sales marketing and personal development blog, described those actions as the "golden rule" for marketing as he encouraged attendees to be the problem solvers for those who come to their websites.
"I define content marketing as becoming the greatest teacher in the world on what you do on your website," said Sheridan, who came off the meeting room stage at the Encore Las Vegas and spent his entire talk weaving in and out of the audience to engage and get feedback on what has and hasn't worked in the past when it comes to generating leads and sales from online channels
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Sheridan started a swimming pool installation business with two friends fresh out of college in 2001. Nine years later, with the help of inbound and content marketing, he said his company overcame the collapse of the housing market and became one of the largest pool installers in the U.S. and currently has the most visited swimming pool website in the world.
In 2009, he launched The Sales Lion and has since grown it to help other see the value in content marketing, he said.
"All your clients want to know is how do things work? It's your obligation to teach them," Sheridan said.
Where some may encounter mistakes is basing their marketing decisions on what their competitors are doing.
"Stop worrying about competition and just be the best teacher, " Sheridan suggested. "If you're thinking like your member, you will have something to say. Don't be afraid that your competitors will steal your secrets."
During his talk, he displayed a picture of a Big Mac to drive home the point even further.
"The problem is most businesses think they they're like the Big Mac with their special sauce when it's actually only Thousand Island dressing."
Sheridan told attendees that research showed that the total number of pages a potential client would be willing to read on a company's website is two or three.
"That is sad because we are devaluing our info," he noted.
If a prospect reads 30 pages before they get to a sales appointment, they would buy 80% of the time, Sheridan said.
"Content is the greatest sales and trust-building tool in the world. Period."