Is your Value Add Content . . . Valuable?

A content based email or online marketing campaign relies on providing valuable insights to keep the audience engaged.  No insightful content, no audience.  In principle most trainers, consultants, and professional coaches agree.  In practice however, it’s a difficult practice for many to adhere to.  While the goal of online and email marketing is to drive leads and new business, the campaign should be careful not to over solicit.

An example of this happened to me recently when speaking with a sales training company.  I asked how their email marketing efforts had gone to date.  The owner said, “Not real well.  We aren’t generating a lot of leads or attendees for events.” So I asked how often they sent an email for an event or offer.  The owner assured me that  they only did one solicitation a month combined with two content emails a month, one was an article and one was a video feature.

I was surprised that they had so few responses or inquiries on their offers if they were consistently providing valuable content in two of their three communications.  Then he gave me a sample of his article.  To say it was a value add article was beyond a stretch.  The first paragraph touched on a sales topic briefly, in three sentences.  The second paragraph talked about what sales training courses they offered that featured that topic.  The third paragraph was a link to an upcoming event.  In short, it wasn’t an article.  It was a three paragraph commercial.  Upon seeing the article I asked for a sample of the video which primarily talked about why a person might want to attend an upcoming event.

In reality, this firm had three emails in their matrix that were solicitations and none with value add content.  While I have no doubt that the events and the offers had value, people on their lists were simply tuning out because there was not valuable content to keep them engaged.

Take some time and review your value add content.  This should be video, audio, or text that is offering insightful information about your industry or professional expertise.  If you read your value add content and find a lot of references to the work you do, things people can buy, or feature/benefits then there’s a good chance that the content doesn’t provide much value to your client/prospect base.