A successful marketing strategy doesn’t resemble just one date with a brand, but actually falling in love with it. And the only way to win someone over is to romance them in the right way. You need to show people the right content at the right time. This romantic comparison came to my mind considering the “See-Think-Do-Care” Content Marketing Framework described by Avinash Kaushik, Google’s “Digital Marketing Evangelist”.
One of the problems with the common marketing funnel is that it usually only delivers results for a limited time. That happens because it doesn’t build a true relationship with your customers.
The “See-Think-Do-Care” Framework instead invites content marketers to talk to people, not just to secure a purchase, but also – and particularly – before and after the purchase, in order to build a trust relationship that provides long-term results. For content marketing, the framework would be structured as:
|SEE||The widest target of all. People who generally like your industry or service category.|
|THINK||A subset of the SEE category. People who are thinking about the kind of product or service you provide.|
|DO||This sparks the companies’ interest. People actually ready to buy the kind of product or service you provide.|
|CARE||Everyone who has previously bought your product or service and may buy more if you take care of them.|
Best content for the SEE Stage
At this stage, people aren’t thinking of the product or service you provide. This doesn’t mean they won’t be in need of it sooner or later (if it’s something in their niche – otherwise, you chose the wrong target). So, yes, you’ve got to talk to them too, because they could think about buying your product or service now if you drive them to this choice. How? With content which is not related to selling anything: you have to create inspirational content.
Show them something on social media that makes them feel that getting that product or service now would be awesome. Images and video content give the best results in the SEE Stage because users don’t have to understand what you are trying to tell them. They see it. Remember that in this phase they think as if they were dreaming, and nobody wants to be awakened by your sudden “Buy now!”
Best content for the THINK Stage
At this stage buying intentions are still weak, but this doesn’t mean they don’t exist. On the contrary! It’s up to you to strengthen them. Intrigue the customers and motivate them. This is the time for the “know queries” and the “know simple queries”, the ones that Google loves so much: all those which give simple and relevant answers to the users’ search intentions. And remember: the majority of searches belong to this category.
It’s in the THINK stage that you can stand out from your competitors and the difference is always made by the content: only useful and well-structured content gives value to your company and will make it a benchmark for your industry.
A blog is the best tool to intercept users’ informational intent: aren’t you yourself reading a blog post right now, to get information? If you work hard on users’ search queries and take care of your posts, enhancing them with infographics and videos, you’ll draw them to your content because they won’t need five different windows open to find in-depth information. They’ll have it all on your blog. In this way, you’ll earn their trust – an important return since we tend to buy from companies we trust.
At this stage you can make micro conversions, too. You can add downloadable content at the end of your posts or get more subscribers to your newsletter.
Best content for the DO Stage
Needless to say, the content here is commercial. We’ve finally come to the companies’ favourite stage: sales. Keywords here belong to the transactional intent, – that is to say buying. If you’ve done a good job with your search engine optimisation the right pages are now ranking well on SERPs with the right transactional queries and if the user experience is right, the deal is done.
Best content for the CARE Stage
This is the most underestimated stage. Once customers have bought from you, stay by their side. Email them extra information, follow up their questions, reassure them.
This is the customer care stage, but also the one for feedback. Shutting yourself away in an ivory tower doesn’t pay back. Talking to your customers does, instead.
E-mail marketing isn’t the only tool you can use in the CARE Stage. You can dedicate a section of your site to the FAQs to address people’s needs or you can create Facebook Groups so your customers can connect to each other while you provide customer support to them all.
Fluid content marketing
As you see, Avinash Kaushik’s approach to marketing is far from the classic funnel, but it is definitely more realistic and long-lasting. It is “fluid content marketing” since this theory represents consumer behaviour in a more realistic way, which can move back and forth through the different stages, as well as skipping stages, in some cases.
Silvia Del Corso has been assisting small businesses and freelancers with digital marketing (Search Engine Optimisation, Social Media Management, PPC, E-mail Marketing) for seven years. Her new website, PinkSEO.Marketing, launched yesterday on 31 October 2017. Silvia loves networking, writing and talking about digital marketing. From 2018 she will be providing modular courses on the different sectors of digital marketing (SEO for beginners, Email Marketing, specific Social Media Management, Content Optimisation, and much more) to be consumed remotely in the form of recorded videos, followed by in-depth interactive Skype live lessons with exercises.