How do we write blog posts that attract your dream clients? What creates that initial connection with you? How can we make your blog posts unique in a digital world saturated with content?
Over the last few weeks, our team has had several Strategy Sessions with new clients, and these are inevitably some of the questions that come up. It makes sense — if you’re investing in marketing (no matter what your industry), it should be furthering your business goals and inspiring new ones.
For us, that means creating marketing content that attracts your dream clients, connects with them, and builds long-term relationships.
Today, I want to share 5 ways we help you do this with your blog as a whole and within each individual blog post. I will also share an exercise you can do on your own (or with us) and some tips for implementing each blogging strategy.
No surprises here, the first step to connecting with your dream clients is… knowing them. Your dream clients (“ideal clients”) are the cornerstone of your business. If you don’t know to whom you are speaking and the types of projects these people have, they cannot recognize you as the perfect solution to their needs.
This is always our first stop during Strategy Sessions with new clients, and we follow the Donald Miller approach (more on that below) to really dive in together. We then reference this information every time we write a blog post for you. This solidifies the post’s intention and creates consistency.
You can do the same on your own…
I’m a personal fan of Donald Miller’s method of understanding your ideal clients through 3 levels of struggle: external, internal and philosophical. This approach comes from his book, Building a Storybrand. If you have time to read the book, I highly recommend it. I’ve read many marketing books, and this one has been the most impactful.
I also suggest downloading our Content Strategy Workbook here, which gives you some space to write down their pain points (and then ideate blog post topics that show your expertise in solving them).
Be sure to write down this information about your dream clients, too. Use it for future reference, a quick refresh, or share it with your team for consistent messaging across every part of your business.
Blog post topics. Your topics themselves should speak to your dream clients, and only your dream clients. If you’re unsure which topics are best for your design firm’s goals and clientele, again, get your hands on our Content Strategy Workbook!
Copy. Within blog posts, share stories from your work with other clients who were your dream clients. You could also share references to things you know they love, problems you know they want to solve, etc.
Someone recently told me that the only thing another firm can’t replicate about your business is… you.
Let that sink in for a moment, because it’s powerful. On the surface, yes, our faces are unique and we should be visible and present in our marketing. But to me, this concept implies so much more. It’s about your design firm being a representation of you — a symphony of your personal history, the lens through which you view life, and your vision for the legacy you want to build.
Above all, it should express your WHY (your mission) and how that mission changes the lives of your clients.
For example, my “why” is founded on a deep-rooted belief in having freedom to live life and pursue your passions on your own terms. I could tell you a long-winded story about feeling out of control of my time and life for X-odd number of years, but you, as a designer, creative entrepreneur, wife, mother, daughter, friend (not necessarily in that order) — well, you can probably relate.
O&B’s mission, then, is to help designers create freedom in their businesses, so they can get out of the weeds and have more time for what matters most to them. Everything we do revolves around this guiding principle. So, what’s yours?
Many clients tell me on discovery calls that they feel too close to their businesses (and themselves) to have an objective perspective; they aren’t sure what’s worth sharing. The following exercise can help you get clarity.
I love the “7 Levels Deep” method for finding your why. It starts with asking yourself why you do what you do. Then, you will progressively ask yourself why again, until you reach the heart of what motivates you.
We’ll ask you for this information during our Strategy Session, so we can be sure to represent you authentically!
Every blog post should share your mission, whether it’s wrapped into the blog post’s topic or in the conclusion as an overarching wrap-up that shows the ultimate benefit your dream clients have to gain
Finding your personal voice is another way to ensure that your blog posts are unique to you and your design firm. This goes beyond your firm’s mission to expressing your unique personality.
Not only will having a distinct voice make it easier for your dream clients to connect with you, it will also help them connect with you in person, when they discover that the voice they’ve been “hearing” matches the person you are in real life.
To be honest, this was a difficult exercise for me as a copywriter. I write in so many different voices for our clients throughout the week that when I’ve sat down to write my own blog posts, I’ve ended up subconsciously channeling someone else. (Which got real awkward when I caught myself writing “y’all”… a word this California girl has never spoken out loud.)
For our clients, we reference their existing written copy (website, social media posts) and how they speak with us in person!
How did I find my voice?
Looked at past writing to friends to see what was authentically me
I stopped trying so hard (seriously, take the pressure off) and started writing how I would speak to a client
I created a brand word list, a list of words that I want our clients to associate with O&B – we use these consistently across our website and all marketing materials.
If you are the face of your business, all of the blog post’s text should be in your voice, even if someone else is writing the post!
Do a run-through at the end of your blog post and add your brand keywords.
Your stories are another aspect of you that are unique — whether those are stories from your experience or stories of your clients and their experiences with you. For example, throughout this blog post, I have already shared 2 personal stories in this post and several moments of insight from my discussions with clients.
This will helps you connect with your readers, build a relationship of trust, and allows your dream clients to recognize themselves in other clients you’ve worked with.
For our clients, we collect quick, prompted notes for each blog posts. Within these, we might ask you to share your or your clients’ experiences, so we can tell the tale!
No exercise needed here. Your best strategies are…
Tell stories as you go, or insert stories when you’re done writing your blog post. Just do a quick scan through the blog post and decide if there are any places where you could better illustrate your point with a client story.
Frame an entire blog post topic around a client’s story (such as a Before & After).
Note: When sharing client stories, only share those related to other dream clients you have worked with.
This strategy is not copy-related, but it plays a significant role in building trust and connection with your dream clients — your aesthetic.
Most high-end design firms specialize in a particular type of design, be it modern, traditional, transitional, etc. Which is great. However, you will also want your website, blog posts, and visual marketing match this look.
Consistency not only attracts the person who loves your aesthetic, it also builds trust every time you meet their expectations. If you have an on-brand look every time you publish a blog post, you are meeting these expectations.
The best way to have an on-brand look in your marketing content is to have these materials in advance. This could include an easily accessible folder of professional photography of your products, a collection of on-brand stock photos your intern found for you, or even a brand photoshoot.
These are all resources we’ll ask you to share with us if we’re blogging for you.
Once you have these resources, you can write and “illustrate” blog posts that match your brand and look beautiful, intentional, and intriguing. Include at least 3 photos in every blog post.
When used in tandem, these 5 steps will create a blog and content marketing strategy that doesn’t look, sound, or feel anything like your competitor’s. It will be unique and authentic to both you and your dream clients.
That’s blogging strategically!
Do this consistently and watch how attract your dream clients sans effort gives you more time and freedom in your business… and in your life.
I believe that life, like home, is meant to be designed. In just 3 years, I built a life I love and a business that supports interior designers across the globe. I’m obsessed with books, a bold red wine, and helping women rise in their power — and I believe that your freedom in business starts here. Read more >>