Using Research to Form a Content Marketing Strategy - Picture of blocks with different emoji faces on them depicting a range of emotions

How to Analyze your Research to Approach Content Correctly

How can analyzing research help you form a content marketing strategy?

There is great value in conducting research and getting objective feedback. If you find areas in which your firm is excelling with prospects, existing clients and employees, you will want to maintain and improve what you are doing and then replicate this success in other areas of your firm. Did you find that you have a disconnect between the perception others have and how you think your firm should be viewed? This enables you to identify areas of improvement to bridge that perception gap and build your reputation. It’s not enough to simply conduct surveys and interviews. The next step is to analyze the feedback and identify trends and areas of opportunity. Then it’s time to develop a CPA firm marketing strategy. Improve upon what’s working and fix areas that need fixing in your content.

What research should be included in a content marketing strategy?

Market research and surveys can include both online feedback and phone, or in-person, interviews. With a sufficient number of responses and feedback, trends will become noticeable and point to what action you can take. It can be hard to obtain honest feedback if the surveys and interviews are conducted by a member of your own firm. If you want honesty, we recommend outsourcing this to a market research company that understands your industry and can help you translate the results into a content marketing strategy.

Client surveys

In the case of a client survey, you will receive insights on how your clients view your firm and can then gauge if this aligns with expectations. We recently conducted a client survey for one of our accounting firm clients. During phone interviews, we found out that while they offered a number of services that were relevant to their clients and referral sources, the firm had not been doing a good job of communicating these services. By identifying this area of opportunity, the firm can now develop content and communication strategies to inform their clients and prospects about the depth of their services.

Employee surveys

Through an employee survey, you can determine if you are meeting the expectations of employees. You can also find out if there are any areas of improvement to increase employee retention and attract new talent to your professional services firm. Your employees might say that they don’t feel supported in training and development. You can remedy this by offering training and opportunities, mentorship programs, and certification initiatives. It’s not enough to simply provide this. Clearly communicate opportunities to your employees through emails and on your website.

In-depth market research

If you are new to a specific industry or niche, in-depth market research can identify the pains, desires and interests of prospects. By knowing what these are, it will allow you to develop a digital marketing strategy that positions you as a knowledgeable resource.

What your content marketing strategy should address

As you develop your content, address the pains of your specific audience. Provide a solution that compels them to continue reading, and eventually, contact you. When you publish an interesting blog post, create an opportunity for additional interactions. Add links to resources and more information for readers to consume. Can they download a whitepaper or read another blog post? Can you direct them to a case study, client story or video testimonial? These don’t simply tell them you can address their pains. They show your readers how you have done this before.

This strategy can work for your website, email nurturing sequences and social media content. Employ a strategy that encompasses the entire spectrum of your digital marketing. This creates brand cohesiveness and consistent messaging to your prospects, clients and employees.

If you want to learn more about How to Enhance Survey and Research Design for Best Results, listen to Christine Nelson’s webinar. Access the on-demand recording through the AAM Store. The cost is free for members and $49 for nonmembers.

About Dawn Wagenaar

Dawn Wagenaar is Principal of Ingenuity Marketing Group, LLC, in St. Paul, Minnesota. Ingenuity works with accounting firms across the country on branding, research, marketing and growth to make their professionals famous. Dawn is past chair of the AAM Conference Committee and Virtual Education Committee and past member-at-large for AAM National Board of Directors.

Dawn Wagenaar on LinkedIn

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