Since 2011 Fynn has been helping business to tell their story. Most recently that’s led to him founding Matcha – a blog system developed specifically for DTC and eCommerce businesses.
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Fynn got into the world of blogging by happenstance. Out of college, he started a publishing company called RootsRated.com that developed tens of thousands of articles covering the best places to go trail running, hiking and climbing in the United States.
That effort, which was three to four years in the making, taught him and his coworkers what it really meant to be a publisher. They learned how to create content at scale, distribute content and measure and analyze what they produced.
They made the major pivot to founding Matcha when Fynn says he noticed that his advertisers really needed help with content more than they even cared to advertise on the website.
Over the course of running the company, Fynn saw generally how much businesses struggled with content production and blogging.
Who Benefits From Blogging
Blogging isn’t for every eCommerce business — but it is for most.
A drop shipping business with razor thin margins won’t likely benefit from blogging since they are competing on differentiation or quality.
On the other hand, businesses trying to craft and nurture their brand and connect with customers through the creation of useful content will find blogging to be an incredible medium.
This deep content is becoming increasingly essential for the process of brand building.
Two types of Content
According to Fynn, blog content generally falls into two primary buckets — utilitarian and aspirational.
- An article that serves to answer commonly asked questions from customers. Ranges from a FAQ piece to more interesting content pieces like a product guide.
- D2C brand building is very much about being part of a customer’s lifestyle. Aspirational blogging can be a great vehicle for delivering content across the entire funnel and should find a way to support customers’ lifestyle needs at every opportunity.
Not all Blogging Created Equal
Today, most brands are trying to reach customers directly and connect with them through content creation.
Blogging in eCommerce, however, hasn’t necessarily increased proportionally with that desire and blog content that is also effective definitely hasn’t increased proportionately.
The best D2C brands stand out in that they are creating exceptional content on their blogs.
Identify the Purpose
The blog article as an asset can serve many different purposes and so many people make the mistake of not identifying the purpose of their content.
Fynn says that blogs can do many different things including driving inbound traffic, answering customer questions and driving repeat purchases, but you have to decide before what you want your content to do.
Without purpose and intention, people often fail to optimize their content.
How Often You Should Blog
Fynn says that to some extent the quantity and frequency of blogs you create doesn’t matter.
What does matter is that you’ve articulated a hypothesis and strategy and are creating content to serve a purpose.
Creating one blog a week is not inherently useful, but some consistency is helpful.
A lot of businesses with the best returns from blogging publish around four times a month, but again there is no hard and fast rule.
How long should a blog be?
If you’re competing for relatively competitive keywords, you’ll probably be shooting for 700 – 1000 word count and beyond.
If, on the other hand, you are posting a recipe blog or FAQ you can do 250-500 words and see great returns.
For eCommerce brands, the most critical thing is to be relevant to your customer.
If you can provide relevant, aspirational guidance to your customer, your blogs will be successful.
If you want to get started blogging, consider the following:
- Answering your customers most frequently asked questions
- Providing content that resonates with the lifestyle needs of your customers. How can your product niche in with the life they are trying to create?
- Answering technical questions about your product
Blogging offers a lot of opportunities for businesses to test resonances, adjacent audience segments and more.
An example Fynn provides is a nutritional water supplement company who have a target audience of middle-aged people trying to kick their soda habit.
When the company started creating content around popular diets they quickly found out that the keto community loved their product and a new customer segment was born.
Blogging is an exciting opportunity to really develop your voice as a business and explore potential opportunities.
For people eager to see some great examples of blogs in their niche, Matcha has a dedicated resource library of segmented blog examples. You can find it at https://ecommerceblogs.getmatcha.com
This growing database highlights the best D2C blogs across a number of different industries and categories.
If we’ve inspired someone to take their first step with Content Marketing – what do they need to know to give themselves the best chance of success?
Very simply, newbies should know they can fall into many potholes and waste a lot of time and money if they don’t plan with intentionality and create distribution strategy.
If you create content just to create content, chances are you won’t see good returns. If you have intention, make a plan for production, distribution and outcomes, blogging can be an incredibly useful addition to your marketing strategy.
Once you’ve started of course you’ve got to ‘keep optimising’! So what’s your favourite way to improve Content Marketing performance?
How you measure results from different marketing campaigns, tactics and assets is important to understand.
For blogging specifically, Fynn says the question he always ask is: “Do you understand whether or not a blog article itself has influenced revenue and where in the funnel it has influenced revenue? Is it a new customer or an existing customer?”
He says if you can’t answer those questions you’ll need to reconsider you tech stacks.
It’s impossible to improve our marketing unless we’re monitoring the performance – but the list of stuff we could monitor can be overwhelming. So what, for you is the number one Content Marketing KPI?
Like most things content marketing, the #1 KPI will depend on where you are in your business lifecycle and what you are trying to achieve. In brand building, engagement is critical.
For businesses looking to decrease their reliance on paid marketing, building blog content that drives inbound traffic is more important.
Crystal ball time – what’s coming up in the next 6-12 months that we should be getting ready for in Content Marketing?
While everything seems to be pointing towards creating short form, fun and snappy video for Reels and TikTok, Fynn says it could be a flash in the pan that fails to represent the deeper, more thoughtful conversations people are craving.
Written content that’s longer form is likely to become more central to the success of eCommerce over the next 5 years.
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