Using Your Blog Posts To Sell Stuff

Blogging can sometimes feel like a tug of war between two ideals.

One one hand, you want to make money. Which means… you have to sell stuff. And if that is an aim that you have, then naturally you’d like to push as hard as you can on that. In an ideal world, that would never offend a reader and they’d just read sales messages all day.

Hehe…. that’ll never happen. 🙂

On the other hand, you know that you can’t write blog posts that just act like sales letters. Nobody would read if you do that. People go out and they search for answers to the questions or problems that they have. When they arrive, they expect the content to be freakin’ awesome… and free.

That’s just the reality.

And so… you have this natural gap that you have to bridge. Now, how can you use a blog to actually do that? How do you use a blog to sell things when you’re not “supposed” to use a blog to sell things?

Well, this site is called “Blog Marketing Academy”… so I might as well get down to brass tacks on exactly how the hell you market with a blog. 😉 I know… novel idea. 😉

First, let’s talk about the person you’re communicating to. Your reader. Your prospect.

This person you’re speaking to has a certain level of what I call “buyer awareness”. They’re going to fall on a scale. That scale ranges like so…

  • Unaware. They couldn’t care less, or have no idea who you are.
  • Problem aware – They’re aware they have a problem they want to solve or something they want.
  • Solution aware – They’re aware that something can be done about the problem they want to solve. They know solutions exist.
  • Product aware – They’re aware of your specific solution or offer and they’re sorta thinking about it.
  • Most aware – They’re in active consideration to buy your offer and are now shopping.

Ya with me so far? Cool.

Now, at the unaware stage, we really don’t care about these people. Nothin’ personal, but they’re just not people we are trying to reach.

Our efforts pick up at Problem Aware. These guys are looking for answers. They go and they look for them. And this is the typical point of entry into our blogs. The type of content we will try to meet them with are:

  • Redwood posts
  • How to
  • Case studies
  • Webinars, maybe.

But, the point is… we are meeting them with value-packed content specifically aimed at their problem. We are not talking about things to buy. We are not trying to sell them anything. At this point, the most we usually do is offer them up a free download in exchange for their email to get them on the list.

Next up is Solution Aware. Truth is, most of the time, the content that we produce at this stage will overlap with Problem Aware. Meaning… the content we produce here is going to accomplish both things. That’s sort of the point. You talk about their problem, you give them a solution, then you give them the next step toward that solution. At that point, you’re offering up a lead magnet, getting them onto a webinar, etc. But, you’re using your BLOG POSTS to do all this.

Now, when they are at the Product Aware stage, things shift a bit. At this point, they’re sorta warming up to at least the possibility of buying a solution to their problem. So, our content shifts gears a bit. What kind of content works here?

  • Case studies
  • Webinars
  • Blog posts which address specific objections

You can totally use your blog to do this. Think about it. If you have certain objections that routinely come up that might keep people from buying your offer, you can tailor a blog post specifically to handle that objection. Then, in your followup email sequence, you point them to that blog post. You’re leading with blog content, you’re not coming off as salesy, but you’re still doing your marketer thing. 🙂

Case studies, interviews… things like that can work, too. It helps your reader put themselves into the mindset of somebody who has accomplished what they want to accomplish. And that helps further them on the awareness scale, even while using content to do it.

Does this make sense?

You’re crafting content for your blog which assists the sales process, but you’re doing it in a way which is not overtly selling. You’re using outside media to help move them along like a funnel. Your email marketing, perhaps retargeting. But, your blog is a fundamental component of the marketing.

But, lastly, we get to… most aware. At this point, they’re definitely thinking of buying something. They’re looking at their options. They’re reading reviews. Looking for comparisons. Looking for reasons pro and con to buy your offer… and perhaps competing offers.

A different type of content usually comes into play here…

The sales letter.

A lot of people put the sales letter into an entirely different category as “content”. But, you shouldn’t. A sales letter IS content. It is just content that is strategically engineered to make a sale at the end of it.

But, never forget… a sales letter IS content.

But, by the time your reader is on that sales letter, they should have been “warmed up” first with your blog marketing. Your sales letter doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Any sales letter is part of a bigger picture and will usually convert much better if certain groundwork was laid before the person gets there.

Crafting a sales letter – and that sales process that leads up to it – is a pretty important skill for any blog-based marketer. Hell… anybody who wants to make a sale or anything online has to know how to write a sales letter.

You don’t have to be the world’s greatest copywriter. I’m sure as hell not! But, you have to know how to at least hold your own.

Next week (April 17th, to be exact)… we are doing the next LIVE WORKSHOP inside of THE LAB. Our topic will be…

Crafting A Sales Letter That Converts

We’re going to talk about how to create this vitally important type of content. Content that actually makes a sale. Presents your offer.

We’ll be talking about what goes on that sales letter, how to craft the thing. And the overall blog-based sales process. I’ll also be taking questions and getting nitty-gritty as needed.

Now, if you’re already a LAB member, you’re good to go. Join us next week and we’ll have some fun. You’ll also have full access to the recording and all the downloads, as usual.

If you are NOT a LAB member yet, then you have the option to sign up just for this workshop. No membership required, and you will have lifetime access to just this one workshop and all downloads that go with it.

– David