IKEA, Dove, Red Bull, Whole Foods, Airbnb and Harley Davidson — what do they have in common apart from the fact that they are all uber-successful and adored?
We love how authentic, emotional and social they are. They have a clear identity, and they aren’t afraid to show it off. And guess what? They are all lifestyle brands.
In a digital-first world, your brand should go the extra mile to sell a lifestyle. Not just any lifestyle, but one that marries well with your target audience’s interests, culture, attitudes, aspirations, beliefs, and values.
That being said, if you want to excel at digital marketing as a lifestyle brand, your content should hinge on a deep understanding of what your followers want and aspire to. It’s a great way to build a brand, and keep your target audience engaged.
Here, we provide you with 10 lifestyle content marketing tips your brand should embrace to create an emotional connection with your customers.
(1) Create an Actionable Content Marketing Plan
Before you start crafting content, you’ll have to hammer out your strategies and scope. That’s why you need a content plan, which will act as the blueprint for all the tactics and activities you will leverage to drive your marketing objectives.
The best time to start creating your content marketing attack plan is at the beginning of the year. But the next best time is right now.
And your plan should take care of every aspect of lifestyle content, from SEO to backlink building and every step in between.
(2) Know Thy Customer
Lifestyle marketing is all about the customers, and how you can create pleasant experiences for them. With 59 percent of consumers saying they’ll not buy from brand they’ve had a bad experience with in the past, it pays to know your target audience inside out.
So, the first rule of lifestyle content marketing is to know thy customer. Not on a shallow level, but gaining deep knowledge and understanding of their way of life.
What do your customers truly want out of their lives? What do they adore? What do they crave in life? In other words, what does an ideal lifestyle look and feel to them?
Know their psychographics, as well as things, places, personalities that inspire and motivate them. This way, you can tailor your content accordingly.
Remember the primary goal of your content is to contribute to the definition and clarity of your target lifestyle. And without this knowledge, you will not be able to evoke an emotional connection, create desire, or inspire your followers.
(3) Cater To an Emotional Desire
Today’s consumers, especially Millennials love lifestyle brands because they offer the best experiences. That’s why your content should look beyond selling. It should evoke certain emotions and feelings of the lifestyle that your target audience aspire to.
Savvy customers want a brand they can follow, feel attached to and idealize even if they don’t want to buy or own anything you tout. As such, use your content to build rapport and connect with them on an emotional and personal level.
Building emotional connections with consumers helps improve customer experience, which, in turn, increases your ROI, according to Temkin Group.
(4) Stick to your Brand Story
Every lifestyle brand has a unique story, what’s yours?
Your brand story paints a certain picture and persuades your customers that your product, service or brand represent their ideal lifestyle.
Your brand story should manifest in every piece of content you create, post or share.
(5) Create Authentic Content
Your content should not only be outstanding but also original and authentic. Smart readers can sniff out second-rate content right from the outset.
Lifestyle content isn’t run-of-the-mill posts.
You should craft masterpieces that, according to ComboApp, must resonate well with your target audience. It should be something that’ll instill their basest and innermost emotions.
(6) Don’t be too salesy
You want your content to sell and work for you. That’s understandable, but you also don’t want to appear like a profit-first brand in the eyes of your customers. And the truth of the matter is that readers can smell salesy content from a mile away.
Instead of using your content to pitch your products or services, craft something that will put the needs of the customer first. Always give value, and use a tone, style, and language that inspires and excites the reader, but don’t overdo it.
Whatever the case, stay the heck out of anything that might seem even remotely spammy. More specifically, don’t use words like cutting-edge, wonderful, pitch, guaranteed, once-in-a-life chance … you catch my drift?
These words will make your content sound “out of touch.”
Your choice of tone, style and diction should exude honesty, and sound down to earth. After all, your followers are part of the subculture you have created or want to create around your brand.
(7) Document your Content Strategy
Having a content marketing plan is not enough. You have to actually document your strategy so that your content team can be on the same page year-round.
This is a well-defined road map that you should put together to provide your copywriters and other members of your marketing team with a holistic picture of your lifestyle content goals, individual actions that you need to take to realize them, and the associated costs.
Don’t forget to take advantage of a content editorial calendar. This is a nifty tool that is employed by most forward-thinking, high-achieving content marketers. It’ll also help you when you are scheduling and researching topics and ideas that go well with your target lifestyle.
(8) Increase your Content Marketing Budget
You need plenty of resources to keep your brand top of your customers’ mind. That means you have to put in enough hours and money to ensure your content is truly authentic and top-notch.
According to a recent Content Marketing Institute report, 55 percent of brands are planning to spend 35 percent more on content marketing in 2019, and with good reason. The chances are fairly good that some of these brands are your arch rivals, so if you don’t up your budget game you risk losing business to the competition.
Investing in more social media posts, blogs, newsletters, captivating videos, and other pieces of lifestyle content will do wonders for your loyalty metrics and web traffic.
(9) Use the Right Tools
From research and brainstorming to posting and sharing, there’s a lot that goes into content marketing. Most marketers can find these steps frustrating, but luckily you have some tools that will help make the whole process effortless.
From chatbots to SEO analytics, content marketing tools are dime a dozen out there. However, not all of them will help spruce up your content marketing efforts. After all,
A recent CMI survey showed that 85 percent of content marketers leverage social media analytics, while 81 percent use email marketing software as an integral component of their content marketing strategy.
(10) Collaborate with Like-Minded Brands
Your customers are into the specific lifestyle that you sell, and not necessarily into your brand alone. That’s where collaboration come into the picture.
When creating, optimizing or sharing content, you should partner or reference non-competing brands. These are companies that are already doing the right things in your lifestyle niche. This will help paint your brand in a positive light and show that you actually care about the lifestyle.
For example, imaware™ is a company providing celiac disease screening tests. BeyondCeliac is the country’s top authority and advocacy group for people suffering from Celiac Disease. BeyondCeliac recently announced a partnership with imaware™ in order to encourage faster medical diagnostics. That’s a true example of the power of partnerships.
There you have it – 10 tips to help you breathe more life into your content. If you understand what your audience wants and then use content to show it to your customers, you will ultimately inspire action – i.e. purchase.
Your audience already know what they are, it’s your job to use content to show them an ideal lifestyle and what they wish to become.
Author bio: Codrin Arsene is the CEO of Digital Authority Partners, a Chicago creative agency.