Last week I was in the throes of a weed-whacking frenzy... but what does that have to do with blogging? You see, it was a really rainy summer and some of my neighbors had overgrown yards. Even with all that pollen, I smelled an opportunity and lined up some weed whacking jobs. Halfway through the first job I had to refill my spool of string, so I went to Metzger's in Los Alamos. Here's the thing. Just because I can easily get customers to pay me to clean up their lawns doesn't mean I know all there is to know about the weed-whacking business. This was a new weed whacker that Seth bought me last year and this was the first time it had run out of string. I didn't completely know what I was doing, and I did not want to waste a lot of time. I was hoping to get the job done in less than two hours and yet I had to mess around in the hardware store. I wandered through the aisles holding onto the old spool, looking for one just like it so I could make the switch. Mine was a Craftsman. And I did not find any Craftsman parts. Only Black and Decker. But like I said, I wanted to get on with the whacking and did not want to go on a wild goose chase looking for this part. I wondered if the Black and Decker part would work just as well. I figured, it probably wouldn't... but I might as well ask. I got up to the cash register and showed the person the old part and the new part I was thinking about buying. "Does it matter what brand you buy?" I asked. "Nah," the person said and rang me up (in retrospect, I will say that they didn't put a lot of thought into my question or their answer and just wanted me to buy the thing and move along). I did - buy it and move along... But when I got to the backyard that I was battling, I realized that I made a mistake. This spool wouldn't fit at all, and even if it did, one of them was made to go clockwise and the other one was made to go counter-clockwise. Sigh. I went back to Metzger's and asked for my money back. And while I was on the way there, I thought, "This is the type of thing that should be in their blog." Ideally, your blog should be helpful, and lead towards a sale I don't know if Metzger's even has a blog. But here is what I am getting at. No matter what business you have, people are buying things from you because they are trying to solve problems. And along the way, they would like to buy things that will help them solve problems without wasting a lot of time or money (like I just did-buying the wrong part). If a customer asks you a question, they are giving you a big clue about what should be in the blog.
Pay attention. Write down the question and answer it as completely as possible in the blog. And show them how to buy the relevant products. Answering the question correctly in the first place could have saved me some time and paying attention to the question could have given them a clue what people are trying to buy. If all of this was done over the blog, that would help people make a decision before they leave the house or make it possible to make a sale online (even if the item wasn't actually in stock. That's it. That is my content strategy tip. But there is more. Those weeds weren't going to whack themselves! And I still didn't have the part. I did what any customer would do... I went to the competition - Ace Hardware. When I was there, the woman working there pointed out something that might seem obvious to you. (Some of the most common customer questions will be very obvious to you, but they will still lead to a sale). She said that you don't have to buy a whole new spool, you just have to buy more of the trimmer string and wind it on there, like so... (she demonstrated). I bought it, saved money, learned something new, and was a happy camper. Next time I will go there first... I wonder if they have a blog. Just think. People go to Google and literally write their question into the search bar. All you have to do to get that traffic is answer the question. Call me at 505-515-7001 if you would like to create content around your customers' questions and problems.