Episode 28 Converting Content to Conversations
Converting Content to Conversations
In the latest episode of Jack Rants with Brynne - Converting Content to Conversations. Jack Hubbard and Brynne Tillman delve into the art of making content resonate with audiences for meaningful engagement. Brynne introduces her five essential elements for successful content conversion, emphasizing the need for resonance and generating compelling moments that drive audience interaction.
The episode explores various types of content, such as original and curated content, highlighting the importance of delivering value and relevance to the target audience. Jack shares his unique approach of dedicating days to specific influencers, to build rapport and engagement. The hosts also discuss posting frequency, cautioning against sharing content for the sake of it and emphasizing the significance of quality over quantity.
The episode concludes with insights into collaborative articles, LinkedIn's AI-generated content encouraging thought leaders to contribute and engage with prospects. Join Jack and Brynne as they unravel the secrets of converting content into meaningful conversations and building lasting connections in the realm of social selling.Click to Watch the Video
Jack Hubbard 00:01
I've had the privilege of being in and around banking for more than 50 years. Lots of changes during that time. We've gone from Ledger's to laptops, typewriters to technology. One thing, however, remains the same. Banking is a people business. And I'll be talking with those people that make banking great here on Jack Rants With Modern Bankers.
Hello, everybody. It’s Jack Rants with Brynne. Hi, Brynne!
Brynne Tillman 00:34
Hi, Jack, this is one of my favorite times of the week. I'm really excited about today's topic.
Jack Hubbard 00:41
Yeah, me too. You know, the last couple of times, we've had to talk about security and things like that. Today, we're going to talk about something really positive and the whole focus is, how do I get my content to resonate with people so that they want to engage with me in a conversation? So I thought, well, the last couple of weeks, I haven't worn a hat, because it's been a little bit more of a serious topic but today, we're talking about content. So I have one of my favorite hats here. It's from our friends at Vertical IQ. And you know, when you think about content, well, there you go. When you think about it, you think this was rehearsed, it wasn't when you think about content, Vertical IQ provides just fabulous content. A lot of people think well, it's for credit analysts and underwriters, but what Bobby Martin and Susan Bell and David Buffalo have is a tremendous content rich approach that can add a lot of value to your bank clients. So today, Brynne, I want to talk about a number of different things but one of them as it relates to content, you've developed kind of a five step thing, five elements that people really need to have, if they're going to have engaging content. What are those five elements?
Brynne Tillman 02:01
Yeah, you know, and I'll say, you know, there's so much different content that gets shared out there, you could have, you know, you have an event at a grand opening of a new branch, and you have, you know, that's one kind of content, you could have, ”Hey, we just helped this client case kind of story content,” but social selling content as a very specific formula. And, you know, when you say what is social selling content, it's content that brings value to your prospect, and gets them to understand the value you can bring to them.
And the goal of social selling content is to start a conversation, a trust based conversation. But there are five elements that we know over the last decade, that helped to convert your content to conversations, the first thing and you know, is resonate, you need to make sure that when your prospect gets to this content, the very first thing they're determining is that this is for me, and the simplest way to do that is to say it, you know, manufacturing companies in Detroit, Michigan are… I have now resonated with that. So I will, what we call scroll stop. Right? If I don't think it's for me, I'm gonna keep going. So that is the most important thing.
The next thing is it needs to create curiosity. Enough for them to not just stop and say it's for me, but now I want to read it. So manufacturing companies in Detroit, Michigan, are struggling with having a balance between too much inventory and filling, you know, filling orders, and whatever, right, all those things and you go, Oh, that's me. Now. It is also, by the way, a qualifying opportunity. Because if they go, that's me, and they keep going. We're like, okay, we're resonating with a prospect that has this challenge.
Number three, we need to teach them something new. This is really important and maybe, whatever it could be little but something new, really that they go, “Oh, my banker hasn't told me that” I didn't hear that from you know, my lender. They go oh, that's new. Now the most important thing is number four, which is what you got them thinking needs to get them thinking differently about their current relationship. their current situation, I wish I had that, boy, if I had that, this is what it would look like in my life, right?
So when we can do that, and we can create that, we really have a huge opportunity and getting them to do number five, which is this content needs to create a compelling moment. A moment where they move from a lurker to an engager. Because we can't start a conversation until we know they're there. So an engagement could be a like, you know, reaction, a comment, maybe they asked you to connect, they view your profile, but they move beyond just consuming your content, it was important enough to do something.
Jack Hubbard 05:52
Let's talk about teaching them something new. Too often what happens is bankers say, Well, I'm not in manufacturing, I make loans to manufacturing but think of it this way, let's say you have three or four manufacturing companies in your profile in your portfolio or if you have three or four at the bank, perhaps there is one common thing that you've done to help them from a variety of perspectives. And if you could share one of those, the manufacturing companies might say, well, that's interesting and back to your point, I haven't heard that from my banker, it might be enough for them to reach out and start a conversation, or when you try to start a conversation, you at least have some credibility.
Brynne Tillman 06:39
So all of this is so important but keep in mind, this is for social selling content. This does not have to be the formula for every piece you share. This is just what we need to do if the goal of this content is to attract our prospects and start a conversation.
Jack Hubbard 07:00
Well, let's start there, then. So there are several different types of content. And let's start right at the beginning with original content. There's a variety of different kinds here, Brynne, talk about original content.
Brynne Tillman 07:16
Yeah, a lot of people think original content has to be like a 250 word blog post but it really doesn't, right. There's so much original content, we can create polls, we can create a 32nd video, some of the best content that I've heard from bankers over the years is, you know, from the car video, they get out of a meeting with, you know, a new client or prospect? And they answered a really good question. So if they ask a question, there's a great answer, and they get in the car and you know, they're outside, maybe, maybe they're even in front of the lawn sign right in front of the building. And, you know, my client just asked this question, and I thought, man, if they had this question, you may too. And then you talk about the question, and you talk about the insight. And that's it. And it's, you know, 30 seconds, 60 seconds. bankers were talkers, we're good at that. Like that's, that's our strength, we don't have to write all the time. In fact, video has so much power, and you post it raw, what's really nice about LinkedIn is you post it, you have an option to put the captions in. They're gonna put the captions in for you, you don't have to worry about any of that. And raw video happens to do much better than edited that video today.
People want to know they'll do great because it's real. We're not editing our "ohms and ahhs," you get to hear them all and people relate better. At least that's, you know, all the studies are saying, when it's an unedited video, that's the original content. A question that you put out there, and sometimes if there's a question, I typically will make it a poll but you could put out original content could be just an idea. There's so much that you could do an image with a quote, Jack, every week, you take a famous quote, you put it in an image, and then you talk about the person that made that quote what that quote means to you. And that does so exceptionally well. That's original content.
Jack Hubbard 09:38
Yeah, it is. And I call it the modern banker Monday. And there's quotes everywhere, and I'm getting from a variety of different kinds of people. And I'm shocked at the 1000s Literally 1000s of people who view it and how much content we have, how many comments we have and how many read posts we have. Now, what a lot of people think is well, what does that do for you? You will, they're not gonna buy anything from you. That's not the goal, the goal is to provide value to them to get my name and then in the name of The Modern Banker out there, and when the time is right, they might say, you know, that The Modern Banker, I need to explore that a little bit. So that's an important thing as well.
Brynne Tillman 10:19
Yeah, and another thing that comes from that is you are meticulously looking at who's liking and who's commenting. And if there's someone you want to have a conversation with, you reach out and you say, thanks so much for engaging with my content. It's been a while since we last connected or, you know, I see, we have so many people in common, you know, I'd love to learn a little bit more about your initiatives, whatever that is, we start trust based conversations, based on the people that are engaging on that original content and it's almost like they made eye contact across the room and waved a little bit, you have permission to walk up and start that conversation.
Jack Hubbard 11:00
You do. And you can do this in a very personal way as well. If there's some original content that you feel would truly benefit somebody that you're either working with, or maybe a client or a referral source, you could send that personally to them with a note that says, “Hey, Jim, hey, Mary, I wrote this the other day, and I was thinking about you when I did it. I thought you'd enjoy that.”
Brynne Tillman 11:29
Yeah, I love that and little bit of you like this, you'll like that, right? Like, you know, make sure that content aligns with that post that they engaged on. And you got an extra bonus for that, you know?
Jack Hubbard 11:44
Well, another one that a lot of people talk about, but the word sometimes is a little misunderstood. And that's curated content. What is that?
Brynne Tillman 11:54
Well, curated content is finding content that will be valuable to your network, while curated, could be any content, but we want it to be valuable to your network that you did not write. Now, you might consider the content on your bank website or blog posts to be curated. Some bankers will consider that almost a hybrid between curated and original content because it's from their bank. But ultimately, you are finding content out in the world that you did not have to create, that will bring value to your buyers. And if it's social selling content, it will lead them to a conversation around what you do but, you know, maybe it's an economic outlook. So it will start conversations that eventually will lead to some business conversations when the time is right.
You can curate content that, you know, I'm on the Chamber of Commerce board, and we're having an open networking meeting. That's curated content. You know, if you're in the area, I'd love to sponsor your ticket, whatever that might be. That's the original content. So much original content, so curated content, because it's somebody else's event that you're talking about. There are so many things you can do here is the test of whether or not it will help you start conversations. Is this information you want to tell them? Or is it information they want to consume? Rarely is it the same thing, right? Sometimes it'll overlap.
But what will happen, if you're sharing curated content, that then you may attract more bankers, if you're sharing content that you love, that you find inspiring? Maybe it's an economic outlook, that small businesses don't relate to, but other bankers do. Just be aware of that, say, if I were a small business owner, is the information in this outlook gonna affect me and my business? And my employees? And my clients? If the answer is yes, it's great. If it's just how it's gonna affect bankers, it's not great. So when you curate content for social selling, really get into the eyes of your buyers and say, Does this bring me value?
Jack Hubbard 14:36
Absolutely! Well, one of my favorite ones is the one I want to talk about with you now. And that's content from industry influencers that attracts our prospects. Let me tell you, just a practical thing that I do every Sunday. What I tried to do is to find an article about sales, sales leadership market Saying general banking and I will read that article and I'll put it up in my Chrome so that it's there. Now I know that I've got four really good articles to post during the week. That plus the modern banker Monday is really important but where I'm going with this is every Thursday is Chris Nichols Thursday, because Chris is just a phenomenal banker. And he writes so well. And because our focus is banking, now, I'm sharing this with an audience that's important to us. And so Chris is an industry influencer. This is so powerful. And I remember a long, long time ago, where you really were very careful about copying articles or sending it in the mail, because you're worried about copyright infringement. Chris Nichols and others that you and I follow, are eager to have you share their content, and they absolutely love it. Talk about content from industry influencers, it's really powerful.
Brynne Tillman 16:11
It’s really powerful. And there's two sides to this. So sorry, excuse me, there's two sides to this. The first is you're sharing Chris's content with your network. So you are, even though he has a huge following, you are still expanding his network every single week, getting in front of new people, right. And then when your people engage on that content, it's expanding even further. So you're building really a good rapport, which you already have with Chris, but generally, the concept is you start to really build a great rapport with them.
The other thing is every week on Chris's content, he's got commenters and reactors and people that are re-sharing his posts, right, like you. So if I look at the commenters, and that's typically where I start, I'll take a look first at the quality of the comment, right? Is this something that I want to engage in or reiterate that Oh, Chris is amazing. I may say yes, I've been following him for years and years. And it's been an incredible evolution and the value he brings, right, like, you can do that. The other thing, which everybody tends to ignore, are all of the reactions. Often there's three, four or five times the reactions, then there are comments.
Now, how would I handle that in starting a social selling trust based conversation? I'd go out and find another piece of content that I absolutely love from Chris Nichols. And I'll go through and say, Okay, three of these 30 year people, I'd love to connect with people that I love that I believe someday I could bring value to business wise. So I pick those three, and I reach out and I'll say, “Hey, Jack, I noticed that you're engaging with Chris Nichols content. I think he's a genius in this area. I am not sure if you've heard him on the podcast three weeks ago on this, but I got so much out of it. If you're open, let's connect and I'll send you a link.” So we can let you know they connect your thanks for connecting. Here's the link to the podcast. My next question is, are there any other influencers that you follow? I'm always looking to add them to my repertoire, right? That's really important. I'm not jumping into what we do or how I sell. I want a conversation on influencers.
Now, a few things happen, I find new influencers, you know, we engage, and eventually and Jack, you mentioned this, I'm going to share original content with them. “Hey, just posted this and I thought of you.” maybe it's weeks later, this is a marathon, right? Banking is a relationship. You would not go on a first date and propose this is a relationship, you know, hey, if they say to you, you know, you know, it's interesting, great to meet you. I'm having some trouble with increasing my line of credit at my bank right now. I'm wondering what you know, what are you guys actively lending? Yes. Now we can propose right like we can go in but most people on LinkedIn are not looking for a new banker today. And it's our job to bring insights and value, build rapport and be the banker they come to when they have a need.
Jack Hubbard 19:56
That's absolutely right. And I always say to bankers bank Because they'll say, Well, I posted three articles, and I have no new business. Look, if you have nothing in the pipeline, and all you're doing is posting articles thinking you'll get new business you have, you have a bigger problem than posting content on LinkedIn. So this is a long term approach. And one of the things you said very early on about the manufacturers in Michigan, one of the things that LinkedIn allows you to do is to be very targeted with your content. If you've got seven manufacturers that you'd love to connect with, because you've looked at Adam on Sales Navigator or RelPro or, or whoever, and you want to target them for some content. That's a doable on LinkedIn. And you can do it but you got to be consistent.
I have a question for you before we have one more that I want to talk about but I have a question for you. I see bankers, I get questions on this but the other thing that is really important is what's too often? How much is too often? Because I see people that say, Oh, you XYZ posted seven times this week, or that today? How often is it too often post?
Brynne Tillman 21:24
Well, I mean, there's too often for the network. And there's too often for the algorithm, right? So I'll start with the network and end with the algorithm for the network, do not post something for the sake of posting it. You want to post something for the sake of starting a conversation for getting engagement. I am shocked. And I don't know why I'm shocked because it's been like this for over 10 years, at the amount of content that bankers share. And they have one like, one comment, and they keep sharing. And every day, there's one like, and one and sometimes none for days, but they keep sharing. It doesn't help you. And it's a lot of time. And you may have even created a reputation where it might say 350 people viewed it with one like, what's happening is people are scrolling, now you have a reputation of sharing content that they're not interested in engaging, that does not help. So you want to make sure that the content that you're sharing is content, your prospects want to engage on, they want to consume, they want to be part of number one. So quality over quantity.
Algorithms, we have learned as we do every year from our friend, Richard Van de Bloom that if you share more than once in an 18 hour period, the first piece of content gets buried. So I just say let's do it every 24 hours, at the most, right, give it even a little more, at the most 24 hours. Now if it's 15 minutes before your 24 hours the next day, it's fine, because it's really 18 for the algorithm but just stick with it once a day. And all at that's the algorithm piece but once a day without any engagement doesn't help. So, you know, we can get by the way, you said you know, very targeted, there's many ways to do this. One of the ways to be very targeted is I share a poll, or I share a post, and I get it into the inbox of the 27 people in my network, that we get value from this, and I asked for their perspective, right. And that's targeted. And that's starting a conversation around what they feel or they think if we can do that in the first hour or two, LinkedIn says this is a relevant article. And they will keep it up.
Now one thing that I am noticing, and I think Jack, you mentioned you've noticed the algorithm changes all the time but I have content now that pops up two weeks later. We're someone's engaging on an older piece that I thought went to sleep, but apparently woke up. So I don't really know what's happening 100% In the algorithm, but I think if you're getting good engagement on your posts, LinkedIn might be testing and throwing up an old one that did well to see if it still will do well because it's certainly not anything I'm doing to push it. It's just seeping into the other content. So it's interesting, but all of this said no more than once a day and make it but it shouldn't be once a day unless it's really good content that your buyers want to engage on.
Jack Hubbard 25:03
Sorry to interrupt you. The last thing I wanted to say about that is that when an old article pops up and someone comments, you're gonna see that in your notifications. And so don't ignore that. If it pops up and somebody comments, go ahead and comment back, thank them for their comment and ask them a question because now it may re-engage the whole post but the last thing I wanted to talk about is something fairly new. And it's collaborative articles, talk about content and engage in collaborative articles. I've done it once. I kind of tried it, it's kind of cool, because I got some really nice feedback from LinkedIn from doing it but what are collaborative articles?
Brynne Tillman 25:50
So collective articles, they're AI generated articles that LinkedIn publishes on their platform. And it's encouraging thought leaders to comment. So there's two ways to really use this, to turn to get conversations. Number one, when you find the collaborative articles that you are interested in engaging on, you're probably looking if you're a banker, your gut is I'm going to go engage in banking now, you should certainly comment where you're smart, and you've gotten insights and thought leadership but if you want to convert content, and that's great, by the way, it's not social selling content but it's thought leadership content, it's not going to get you leads or opportunities or people necessarily to talk to, but you'll be seen as a subject matter expert in the industry.
You can now use collaborative articles in another way. Find the content that your prospects are engaging in. Where are they sharing their thought leadership? Where are they, you know, on manufacturing, on risk management, on whatever it is that you know, you take a really good look at, who were my ideal clients prospects, and find the content where they will engage. So now when we engage back, or we look at them and say, This is someone I'd love to have a conversation with, based on their content, it's a much warmer connection, because you're like, hey, I really love your insights on collaborative articles. They're gonna be like, Oh, someone's looking. Someone's excited, and you can definitely start a conversation. Collaborative articles are really fun. And the last thing I'll say about this is if you are stuck for ideas on what to talk about, head over there and start commenting. The ideas will flood your brain.
Jack Hubbard 28:00
Yep. You know, there's more content created in a day than almost in a century, long, long time ago. So there's a plethora of opportunities. We just got to make sure I think your five elements are right on target. And I think we need to make sure that it is targeted and focused because that's what's gonna help you generate some good conversations. Well, Brynne, always great to talk to you. This is one of my favorite times of the week. Hope you have a wonderful week. And thanks for joining us again.
Brynne Tillman 28:30
Thank you! Excited to be here. Looking forward to next week's show. Bye, guys,
Jack Hubbard 28:37
Because it's Thursday, and it's Jack Rants with Brynne. Bye, everybody.
Thanks for joining us for Jack Rants with Brynne brought to you by our good friends at Vertical IQ and RelPro. We're live on LinkedIn every Thursday at noon Eastern time helping bankers turn connections into conversations.
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