6 steps on the content marketing value ladder

May 12, 2022
How to use content creation to grow a fanbase? In today’s quick tips episode, Laura Kukemelk shares the 6 steps on the Content Marketing Value Ladder: building awareness, generating interest, providing comparison, helping with evaluation, assisting purchasing, and focusing on retention.

PS! If you're looking for a framework to build your content strategy and a simple template for your content plan, then check out our Content Strategy & Content Plan Template.

So what is content marketing? We believe that content creation is the beating heart of today's marketing. The purpose of content creation is to tell stories, provide valuable content, and give the customer more for free than they would expect.

At the heart of content creation is the "givers gain" principle. By giving away valuable content, you’re proving that your company is a reliable authority that understands the client and their needs, identifies with the target audience and speaks the same language. When you can send out content that conveys this to your target audience, you will be growing a fan base that will happily spread information about you on social media and face-to-face. And those recommendations are pure gold!

So, in order to do that, it is important to be purposeful and consistent with your content. At Powerful Marketers, we call it the “Content Marketing Value Ladder”.

The value ladder means that you always have to be ready to offer content of a higher level of quality, which appeals to a smaller, but very high quality part of your audience.

There are 6 steps on the Content Marketing Value Ladder:

  1. Awareness: This is the biggest part of your audience. Here you are aiming to break through the information barrier and land on your target audience’s radar. Think, what kind of content would raise awareness of your industry, show people some opportunities, and improve their reality? For example, it could be videos, webinars, podcasts, blogs, newsletters, quizzes. Bear in mind that this is not the phase where people typically buy, it is all about just raising awareness that you exist and that this topic matters for your audience.
  2. Next up we have generating interest: What kind of content would generate specific interest in your brand? This is where you start to go a bit more specific, for example by using how-to videos, tutorials, infographics, before-and-after images of using your product.
  3. Next up we have comparison: What kind of content would help compare your brand's products to those of your competitors? Help your audience understand how you differ. Use reviews, free guides, testimonials, case studies, interviews, templates, resources.
  4. Now it is time to help with evaluation: What kind of content would help people make the right choice? This is the moment where you need to start being a lot more interactive. For example, hosting events where participants can get the “sense” of what you’re offering, doing live videos or demos, offering freebies, and telling success stories.
  5. Next step on the value ladder is purchasing: What kind of content would encourage your audience to take action or buy? Here it is important to use clear and personal call-to-actions in your communication. Think of the next logical step - maybe instead of buying, your goal here would be to get them on a call or have them make an appointment? Let them know what they should do next. By this time, they should already be highly interested and it is your role to simply guide them through the process.
  6. Last but not least, it’s about retention: What kind of content would engage them after the purchase, so that they’d start spreading your message and become repeat customers? Here you may share content that your customers have created, share their testimonials, ask for their feedback, invite them to “members only” groups and so on.

Remember, that in your target audience there are always people in different phases: there are those in the awareness phase and there are those ready to make the purchase. Your content should be diverse enough to provide necessary information for all the phases and if possible, think how you can lead the potential customer in their journey. For example, starting with social media, then inviting them to join the newsletter, then sending them information about a free webinar, then having them on a 1-on-1 call and so on.

The work on your content is never complete - you constantly go from creating to testing to improving. But if you do it consistently, then sooner or later, you will start to see some results!

Here's the full episode on YouTube:

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