July 12, 2020
With the focus on the digital platform, we humans are somehow losing the face to face interaction with people. If one needs to talk, there is a phone call for that, even one can send text messages or the most common thing WhatsApp could be used. These digital platforms have somehow increased the physical distance but still, the connection between people is more or less the same. We, humans, are emotional folks and when someone is emotional the bond created in between loved ones is always a strong one.
We laugh, cry, love, & hate, and that’s what is the part of life and that is something which gives the feeling that we are alive. Emotions can trigger responses in people and play a big role in creating long-lasting & loyal relationships between people.
Not only between people but emotions can also help build relationships between a business and its clients. For that, businesses need to show empathy towards them and make them believe that they understand & respect their feelings.
This post will tell you how empathy can make your content marketing more effective and the role it plays in building relationships with customers that lasts very long.
In simpler terms, empathy is the ability to feel and understand exactly how someone else is feeling. Don’t get it confused with the word sympathy, which means feeling sorry for someone else’s loss. Sympathy doesn’t mean that you can feel how another person is feeling, it only means that you are concerned for some else’s loss but it is not affecting you anyhow. While empathy is to be in the shoes of another person and feel the same as he/she is feeling. That is why empathy can win you people but sympathy cannot because sometimes it appears fake.
Those days are no longer present where the salesperson has to visit people one by one to sell products and introduce the brand. This is a digital world, where most of the things happen online and salespeople don’t have to encounter people one by one telling why they should use their products.
With the advancement in technology, people have also become smart and they know what they should buy and what they shouldn’t. But, when the competition is so tough all around, businesses cannot leave on people to decide, as considering this will never get them success and they will never going to establish themselves in the market.
Thus, it is necessary for businesses to tell people how they are different, why people should choose their products or services, and what benefits people will get doing so. Everyone wants better and making your brand one will fetch you good attention. Now here’s the catch, if you want to get the attention of your target audience, use empathy in your content marketing, tell them their feelings, and come up with a solution to their problems. When people see that you understand them, they will start creating feelings for you and that’s how your empathy will drive you the success you wish for.
Now you know how important empathy is for content marketing efforts. But it is also vital to understand how effectively you can use it to get the best results. Let us see how you can do that:
People want to get heard and they want answers from humans as well. Thus, it is important for you to create a personal touch with your target audience along with automizing your process. People are smart these days, they know to whom they are talking to a bot or a real human. Hence, you need to establish a personal touch with people especially those who have entered your sales funnel and considering to buy your product.
Considering this will show your concern towards your target audience and they will see how important they are for you. Plus, maintaining a human touch will also tell you about their needs and problems, and you can examine how your products or services can solve them.
Thinking that each of your customers is the same could be the biggest mistake for you. Remember, not all are the same, everyone has their own specific needs, requirements, and purpose of buying something. Even the response of all will be different for various things. Thus, you need to prepare your marketing efforts differently for a different audience. Especially, when you want to show empathy.
Wrong concerns at the wrong place could be disastrous, hence, you need to identify the problems faced by a different segment of people and then respond accordingly.
Research is the answer to the above point where we have said that identification of needs and problems of different segments of people is necessary. This could only be done by performing the research of your target audience and identify what are the reasons due to which people are choosing a product or service that you offer.
For example, if ten people want to buy a car, then the reason for each of them could be different. One might want it to gift someone, another might need for family purpose, the third person wants to buy it to replace his/her old one, and so on. Here, the product is the same but the reasons to buy that product are different. So, it is also important to target people differently to grab attention and that’s why deep research about your target audience is necessary.
The research will clear you the purpose of people to look for something that you offer and then you can put their shoes on to give them a strong reason to choose you over others. With this, you will be able to tell them how exactly it feels to be in their position and how the product will make their experience better. This will create an emotional touch with the audience and the chances of giving a thought about your brand will increase.
This is a must-do job for any business if they want to know about their target audience in deep and solve their problems. If you don’t listen to what people are saying, you won’t be able to know what exactly they want and how they are feeling. Listening is the best hobby one can have and it helps a lot.
Along with paying attention to the needs and feelings of your target audience, it is also important for you to be proactive in your approach.
Not only with the reviews or when you are talking to your audience one to one, but being attentive is necessary for each way you are interacting with people. It could be through feedback forms, social media, online forums, direct email, or direct post. It is important to have a look at every method and identify what people want to say because that’s how you will be able to connect with them in the right way.
To know your customers well, creating information-rich marketing personas is vital. They will tell you about personal interests and other key information about your target audience. To create marketing personas, you need to ask people a series of questions like their name, hobbies, things they love and don’t love, which brand they think is best in your niche & why, how using a product that your offer help them, and many more. These questions will tell you a lot about your target audience and things that entice them.
Collecting such information will help you create strong and valuable marketing personas with high chances of giving conversions later on. These personas will let you create personalized content for targeting people of different interests and needs. And hence, with this, you can use empathy in your content and show people that you know how they feel and you are there to solve their problem.
The questions you ask could be anything, that are relevant for your business’s niche and are helpful for you to target them in an interesting & attention-grabbing manner. Remember, don’t ask any question by which people get offended, doing this might create a big dent in your marketing strategy.
Now, this is something very basic, ask yourself why you have created the marketing personas? Only for a record? Or to know how people feel about your brand or product?
The simplest answer that we could give to this question is that personas for everything, record as well as to know about the opinion of your target audience. But along with all this, they are also for preparing tailored content for people with different interests and different needs. That’s where you can be unique & relevant to the people you target. Because, while preparing the content you need to first know, for whom you are preparing it. Considering this will get you better attention and positive engagement from the people.
Here you need to remember one thing that your ideas could be different from what your customers want, so it is advised to put customer interest first and then your ideas. By implementing this tactic, you will see that your ideas are becoming better and customers are loving what you are offering.
Once you have created personas and identified which type of content could be best for a different segment of the audience, it’s time to reconsider all your previous ideas. The prime reason for reconsidering ideas is, that there are high chances that what you have in your mind before creating personas might not work for you. We have also discussed this in brief in the above point.
Your ideas must match the persona of your target audience because that’s how you can show empathy and get them on your side. To reconsider your ideas, you can take the help of marketing tools and other resources available in the market. That will give you better support in tailoring content for the specific audience.
To create better, relevant, & specific content with empathy, you can take the help of a search engine to see what queries people are typing the most. Identify the keywords most relevant to you and your target audience, and also look around towards your competitors to get a better idea of what they are doing to get success and what better you can do to overpower them.
Another best thing by which you can use empathy in your content marketing is by empathy mapping. This might or might not be a new thing for you, but let us clear a bit about what an empathy map is.
An empathy map is similar to customer persona but it helps you better in identifying the pain points of your target audience. Through empathy mapping, you will be able to know what exactly people want not what you that they want.
By empathy mapping, you can ask customers several questions about their pain points, where they hear from, what they hear, which platform is the most influential for them, what they do, what they need to be successful, and so on. Whichever relevant questions you think that can connect you with people emotionally can be included and by experimenting, you can strike off the ones that are not working.
This way, you can create empathy maps and implement them with your marketing strategy to get better results. Remember, to create empathy maps, it is important to have a customer persona as well.
The prime goal of empathy mapping is to know your customers or target audience as much deep as you can and that will help you out in creating a better customer-business relationship.
Most of the marketing efforts made by businesses indeed are to promote their brand and/or their products or services. But with all the efforts, they need to know that customer interests are also necessary when it comes to promoting your products or services. That’s where the role of empathy comes in content marketing.
You need to understand this fact that empathetic content marketing is majorly focused on customer interest, not about your brand. Thus, before implementing any strategy for empathetic content marketing, you need to keep your personal interests aside and focus mainly on what people expect you to deliver and why they want it. One of the main goals of including empathy with your content marketing efforts is to create a better and stronger connection with your existing and potential customers, as this is very helpful in making a big brand bigger and a small one big.
Some of the most common concerns for business are leads, customer attention, web traffic, & sales. But empathetic content marketing is not about showing your concerns, rather it is to solve concerns of your target audience & customers and that automatically will solve yours. Again, this tells us that customers always come first and businesses who have this motto have high chances of growing fast and making a mark in the market.
These are the most effective ways by which you can include empathy in your content marketing and make it effective enough to reap some great benefits. While we talked about empathy, it is also important for you to know the different types of empathy that can be included in your content marketing efforts.
There are three types of empathy that you must be aware of and that can be created through content marketing.
It is the ability to feel, analyze, or understand how the other person is feeling. It is the type of empathy where one is in the shoes of another person to get the exact feeling of that person. Through cognitive empathy, you can communicate with people in a much better way by providing related information to what they are looking for or what they want. By creating a sense of cognitive empathy, you will be able to see things from other’s perspective and that’s where you’ll have the edge over your competitors.
As the name suggests, emotional empathy is concerned more about the feelings of the other person. It’s where you have the ability to share what others are feeling, if they are sad, that is making you sad as well while if they are happy, along with them you have a joyous feeling as well.
In other words, we could say that you are facing the direct impact of what your target audience feeling. Emotional empathy can help you connect emotionally with people and with this, you can create a strong bond that has high chances of lasting for a long time.
The next and last on our list is compassionate empathy which is much wider than the types we have discussed above. Along with seeing from other’s perspectives and understanding their feelings, compassionate empathy focuses on taking appropriate action to make others feel better.
If we talk in the content marketing sense, then with compassionate empathy you need to make some moves that are helpful for people, and that makes their experiences better. Respond to the problems of your customers in an empathetic way to give them a solution and they will be yours. But for that, you need to first understand what they think, what they want, and how they feel.
So, we could say, that to include empathy in your content marketing efforts, you need to understand people in all three ways as mentioned above. And if you do that right, it would be difficult for your competitors to beat you.
Emotions have the strongest power than anything, as they can even make or break a person. But when we talk about businesses, emotions can also play a key role in defining their success and giving an edge over others. Being a business owner, if you can get the right idea of what your customers want and how they feel about your products or services, you can take your business to a whole new level.
Having something known as ‘empathetic content marketing’ in digital marketing practices is proof that empathy has a key role in defining the success of businesses. Including empathy in content that is posted online can get you the attention of right and genuine audience with high chances of conversions. When people see that you know what problems they have and you are here with a solution, it will tempt them to explore you more and that’s where you’ll get your first points.
By being empathetic, you can bring people your way and create a connection that is hard to break. The main purpose of writing this post was to tell you how empathy is important in content marketing and how you can include it in an effective way. We hope that our purpose of writing this post is fulfilled and you have gained enough ideas to see through the glasses of your customers and give them exactly what they are looking for.