Have you ever published a great blog only to hear crickets? You poured tens of hours into writing a blog that helps prospects solve a BIG problem. Then, nothing. Nobody except your Mum liked it when you posted it on Facebook. Nobody engaged with it on LinkedIn. It never attracted a single visitor to your website. It never earned you a single dollar in revenue. Clearly, blogging doesn’t work. You feel frustrated. You give up on blogging.
The problem is that you solved a BIG problem. Too big for most of your prospects to fully grasp. Too much for most of them to digest. Just, too much.
And you just cost yourself a fortune…
Cure or Disease?
As a knowledge professional, you understand the problem in all its excruciating details. You know the solution. Damn it! The blog you wrote proves that.
You’re a doctor presenting a cure for cancer – whilst your prospects are busy searching Google about symptoms. You’re writing brilliantly about radiation therapy. Your prospect is asking about the lump they feel on their left arm. They don’t know that they need a solution. They’re not 100% sure if they have a problem. They think they might. They may need some help. They just don’t know. Yet.
Let me give you a real-world example:
My company owns a heavily trafficked attorneys’ website. The website regularly generates more than 500 inquiries per month for the attorneys using the platform. One of our biggest traffic drivers is around the topic of obtaining and/or replacing birth certificates. Truthfully, obtaining or replacing a birth certificate isn’t a matter that most lawyers would deal with. It isn’t profitable. So, why do we help to solve that particular problem?
The need to obtain or replace a birth certificate is often a symptom of something else. Is someone about to file a child custody case? Do they need to tender documents for a disputed estate? Are they about to migrate to another country? There could be dozens of reasons why obtaining a birth certificate is important – and just as many reasons why they might THEN need the help of a lawyer.
Solve the Micro Problem
The “micro problem” of obtaining a birth certificate may have no immediately apparent relationship to the underlying legal issue that a prospect ultimately wants to solve. But it is related. And here’s the thing, helping to solve the micro problem makes you the expert. A reliable source of information. The trusted authority. A person they can turn to.
Niche Down on the Micro Problem
Want to make sure you’re getting qualified prospects? Niche down on solving the micro problem. Don’t just write an article about obtaining a birth certificate. Write another article about obtaining a birth certificate prior to seeking child custody orders. Write another article about obtaining a birth certificate prior to filing a paternity suit. Tailor the solution you provide to your own niche in the marketplace.
An added bonus of solving a problem early in the customer journey is your ability to retarget them. If you’ve seen those creepy “I know what you’re thinking” ads following you around the internet right after you’ve searched for a particular product or service, that’s retargeting. This post isn’t about retargeting. Just be aware that you can do it.
The Customer Journey Has Changed
Prospects are now researchers and explorers, often arriving at your office educated and well informed. Forget the old-school mantra of know, like, and trust. That’s now preceded with attract, inform and engage. If you’re not cutting through the noise online and earning access to decision-makers by positioning yourself as a subject matter expert, your competition will. There is no better way to obtain that cut through than by solving micro problems.
The Macro Payday
The macro payday only arrives when you get paid to solve a problem. Solving micro problems for free demonstrates your expertise, builds authority and helps to establish trust. Executed properly, it will also build your visibility in Google organic search results and drive engagement with the audiences that matter to you most online.
A Final Word
Solving micro problems isn’t always easy or profitable. You need to know exactly which micro problems to solve. Why solve a problem that nobody is searching for solutions to, or for which the competition is too tough to rank in organic search results?
That’s become quite a complicated process in recent years. We call it Content Sniping.
Content Sniping employs artificial intelligence to interrogate the Wikipedia knowledge graph for key concepts related to a particular topic. We then check organic search volumes around the identified concepts and assess the likelihood of ranking for the most relevant search terms on Google. That’s just a starting point. Succeeding with this strategy requires considerable time and effort. It’ll also require an investment of cash and probably hired expertise to do it optimally. You can reach out to me about that.
And with that, I’m done (for now) with solving the micro problem, of solving a micro problem. If you have any questions or feedback, please comment below. I will do my best to answer all question.