Tim Reid is the guy behind Australia’s #1 marketing podcast, Small Business Big Marketing. He recently gave a presentation at our Authority Content workshop explaining his concept of helpful marketing strategy. The following is a snippet of that talk as well as the transcript of the video.
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Video Transcript: That’s why Google called their algorithm update in October last year the Hummingbird update because they’re fast and accurate. In fact, Matt Cutts at Google said Google wants relevant, unique, helpful content produced regularly. Helpful, unique, relevant content produced regularly. This is really important.
This supports the idea that helpful marketing is a good marketing strategy. You see we are who Google says we are. That’s kind of a scary, big brother type statement. But think about this in the context of you, the consumer, not the business owner, just the bloke or lady in the street who is out there buying things. We google things and the more high involvement the purchase, the more likely we are to google it. If you’re not on page one of Google, do you exist? We are who Google says we are.
The simple Google equation, and there are much bigger brains in this room to explain the algorithm than little old Tim up the front; however, Google wants the internet to be interesting. They just want the internet to be interesting.
As website owners, they say, listen, make the website interesting. Make the internet interesting and as a result make your website interesting. Put helpful content on there that is relevant and unique and do it often. Bring more people to your website, have them stay longer and that means we, Google, can sell more advertising. It’s a simple equation. If you do that for us, Google, then we’ll help you with your rankings.
Yes, there are some technical, geeky things that you need to do in terms of meta data and so on. Again, there are people in this room you can interrogate about that later on. Suffice to say, make your website interesting with helpful information and Google are going to reward you for it.
Who hasn’t updated their website in the last six months? If you had put your hand up, I would have accused you of having a smelly pond. A smelly pond is stagnant water. No one goes near stagnant water, smelly ponds. That’s what so many small business owners’ websites are. Google stops going there if you stop updating with useful content. Google have no reason to continue to index it, to find things to rank. This is how Google works.
So a strong argument for creating helpful content is that the big G asks us to do that.
There are many other reasons which I don’t have time to go into. Suffice to say it creates word of mouse. A lot of businesses say word of mouth is the best marketing I do. Word of mouse, not marketing. Word of mouse is the result of great marketing, having a great product, a great service. Likewise word of mouse isn’t necessarily marketing, but it is the outcome of creating great marketing, having a great business.
If you create helpful content like the material I’m going to show you today, then you are going to be shared. Think about it, create marketing that people want to share. I worked at Clemenger for ten years and I worked at Flight Centre as the marketing manager. I created ads, I was creating ads for Dulux, Gillette, even Yellow Pages, which is quite funny because I hate Yellow Pages. That’s another story. I created ads for big brands.
No one ever said, hey Tim, that ad you created for Dulux, can I email that to my mates? It’s a ripper. That didn’t happen. But now I’m creating helpful content and I have been creating helpful content for five years or so and people do want to share it. People do actively, involuntarily share it and comment and do all that kind of thing.
I’ve even got a university in South Africa and a university in Canada who have bought helpful content from me and put it on their curriculum. So all of a sudden this amazing leverage happens.
The other great thing about helpful content is it gets inquiry, that’s the bottom line. We’re all business owners, we want inquiry, we want the phone to ring and great marketing does that. Once you’ve got helpful content and you generate inquiry, people are coming into your shop, they’re ringing you, they’re emailing you, they’re hitting you up somewhere saying hey, can we work together? That’s when you know your helpful marketing is working and your sales process needs to kick into position.
Let’s go through some examples of helpful content.
This is Riverside Pools and Spas in Phoenix, Arizona. They’re an in ground pool company, they build fiber glass pools. They’re the biggest fiber glass pool installer in North America. In 2007 they were spending $250,000 on advertising and getting $4,000,000 of sales. In 2011 they spent $20,000 on helpful marketing and increased their sales per annum by $500,000. So there was a drop in expenses and an increase in sales.
One of the game changers for these guys was pool 101. It was a very simple addition to their nav bar. Pool 101, they just went out and asked their prospects and their customers and their staff, what are the most frequently asked questions that people ask us when getting an in ground pool built? That is all we want to know. We’re going to be the people, the business that answer that question.
Someone in your industry has got to be the one who is going to be most helpful. It may as well be you. These guys put their hand up in North America to say, we’re going to be the most helpful fiber glass pool installers. So they put in pool 101 and the most frequently asked question when getting a fiber glass pool installed is how much is it going to cost? That’s pretty obvious, so let’s create a page on our website says Riverside Pools, that answers that question in depth, in video, in words, in pictures. This page gets an incredible number of views. It ranks incredibly well on Google, number one on Google in North America for how much do in ground pools cost?
As a result, it gets people into their website and the average amount of page views for this business is nineteen. Then when the phone goes at Riverside Pools, these people are sixty percent sold. They’re pretty much sold that they’re going to buy a pool from Riverside, they just want some additional details they want to speak to someone about.
This is not brain surgery, this is just beautifully simple helpful marketing strategy. You say, let’s solve problems. Marketers, every single one of us, should be solving the problems of our clients and our prospects. The bottom line with helpful marketing is it’s about selling more by selling less. As business owners, there is that anxiety that is always there that we just feel like we want to sell, sell, sell. Would you just buy from me? My product or service is really good. But of course as consumers that is not how we think. We don’t want to be sold to, we want to be wooed, if you like. So it’s about selling more by selling less.
It’s about teaching, not pushing. It’s a really different mindset. It’s a really enjoyable mindset. When you realize the mountain of knowledge you’re standing on and start sharing it, that’s when your marketing becomes a hobby.
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