The Best Way Content Marketing Can Grow Leads

Eduardo Yi is the lead of content marketing at Teachable. He also specializes search engine optimization. We recently caught up with Eduardo to get his insight for businesses on developing sales leads and growing sales. Here’s what he shared:

Can you tell us about your professional background? How did you become interested in digital marketing?

I am an engineer by education, but I went into (traditional) marketing as soon as I graduated from college. I was dissatisfied by the lack of accountability of traditional marketing organizations within large enterprises, where hundreds of thousands of dollars could be spent on a campaign with no way to measure ROI.

I felt that digital marketing was completely different. Almost everything could be tracked, measured and ultimately allowed to link efforts and results.

What are the major challenges facing brands today in trying to develop sales leads? How can they overcome these challenges?

Most brands try to go for the sale as soon as they get a lead, which ends up driving possible customers away. Modern consumers are much more educated about their options and have a lot more information available. Today, brands need to educate their leads and provide value up-front (with no strings attached) to build a relationship with the consumer. Once that trust is built, the likelihood of turning the lead into a customer increases dramatically.

What role should content marketing play in growing sales leads?

Creating content that provides value to the consumer is one of the most common ways of building trust.

What are the most common mistakes you see your clients making in developing content that helps increase sales? What should they be doing differently?

Most marketers focus on demand and size of the opportunity (things like search volume or social mentions) when deciding what content to create. I think that instead of doing that, they should focus on how the content matches the searcher’s intent and how that relates to the company’s acquisition funnel and goals—this will, perhaps, result in pursuing a “smaller” opportunity in terms of search volume, that might generate a significantly higher impact in the business.

What are some of your best practices for creating content that not only helps find new customers but also closes more deals?

I think performing extensive keyword research is essential. After that, it’s even more important to map the keyword opportunities against the ideal customer journey.

What brands do you think have done an especially noteworthy job in perfecting their content strategy? What can we learn from them?

I really like what the marketing team at Moz is doing.

Most content marketers use “lead magnets” as a way to capture leads by asking people for their email address to access “premium content”.

Moz, on the other hand, decided to make all of their content publicly available with no email opt-in whatsoever. They say that they prefer to focus on quality and their bet is that people’s trust will be built organically over time because of the quality of the content.

It seems to be working for them.

What tools are essential to increasing sales leads today? What should all sales pros be using?

I think that a good keyword research tool should be in any content marketer’s stack. I like ahrefs, SEMRush, or KWFinder (on the lower end of the price spectrum). Keyword search volumes can help marketers understand what people are looking for and what terms they’re using to do it. Plus, search volume can be used as a proxy for demand.

Tell us about some of the trends or innovations you’re following in the world of digital marketing today? Why do they interest you?

I like the fact that search engine optimization is moving away from being hacky/spammy to creating content that actually provides valuable information to its readers. I think that as machines get better at understanding language, we will start seeing higher quality content naturally raising to the top of organic search rankings.

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