How to Build a Customer Resource Center in a Day
by Erika Napoletano
Your business exists from day to day because you bring value to people's lives and businesses. What if you could amp up the value you deliver — using existing resources — and get it all done and ready to deliver to the world in under a day?
It's possible, and if you follow the steps below, it's even probable. An online resource center is your business's own curated content hub that acts as a powerful tool connecting your audience to your expertise in a highly sharable (and scalable) way.
Step 1: Figure Out Your FAQs
You're in the business of helping people and businesses. Odds are, you can rattle off a "greatest hits" list of the questions you're asked most often. Those questions will be the main categories for your online resource center.
Step 2: Review Existing Content
If you've been online for any decent period of time, you may have a blog, white papers, reports and other gems you've been sharing with your audience. Review your existing library and see which content most thoroughly addresses the FAQs you identified above. The best pieces for resource libraries are items such as studies, reports, white papers, industry regulations and changes, and other how-to themed content.
Grab links to each of those pieces and place them in a document, properly categorized. A great place to begin is by selecting three to five pieces that satisfy each FAQ.
And a bonus? Your new FAQ-generated categories give your company's content creators ideas for new blog posts and resources that can be shared via your blog and in the resource library.
Step 3: Create a Custom Graphic for Each Category
Visually pleasing web pages get more clicks than giant piles of digital text. For each of your resource library categories, create a beautiful image that is unique to your brand. Tap your graphic design team or use online resources like Canva.com to quickly create stylish and professional graphics (on a dime).
Step 4: Make Sure your Content Is Sharable
Each piece included in your resource library should have social sharing enabled. The most useful buttons will be dictated by your industry, but some universal ones to include are Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+. This lets those who found the content useful to easily share it and bring you new audience members (and potential customers) who will find it useful and share it as well.
Step 5: Set a Regular Review Schedule
Resource libraries can range from compilations of your highest-rated how-to blog posts to content you create exclusively for the resource center. Set a regular schedule to review what needs to be added and whether you want to create new content specifically for the center. This will keep it from becoming outdated and will always offer something new for the people who value you most — your audience.
Having a well-stocked, regularly updated resource center brings value to your business and gives consumers a reason to reach out to you and share your expertise with their friends. Even beginning with a simple one that you can launch in a day is a great way to start reaping the rewards of digital content.
About This Author
Erika Napoletano is an author, columnist, speaker and branding strategist, hailed by Forbes as a “spinless spin doctor.” She's a twice-published author, including The Power of Unpopular (Wiley 2012), a columnist for American Express OPEN Forum, an acclaimed speaker from TEDx Boulder 2012, and speaks at conferences across the U.S. on the inherent power of truth in business… or as she refers to it, the power of unpopularity.
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