We've all been there. We have to make decisions about our businesses and how they positions themselves to our target audiences, and we just can't seem to settle on the best option. Whether it's an email you're about to send to some new customers or a TV commercial you're about to broadcast to an entire region, always remember the "why."

The key to your branding success depends on intention. Do you have it? Here's how to check yourself.

Does it answer questions?

How are you determining what messaging matters and what doesn't? What rises to the surface and what stays merely in the "idea friendzone?" Look no further than your end consumer. What questions are they asking? Don't give your customers what you think they want - give them what they actually want by thinking about these questions. (Better yet, prompt them to ask actual questions - it's the best way to gut-check whether your marketing is truly answering the most pressing questions.) Do conusmers want to know "how to buy your products" or do they want to know "how to pick the best product" or "how to find the cheapest product?" (My money's on the latter two options.)

Does it Drive Traffic and Conversions?

Traffic is great. We all love traffic. (Except the road-bound kind of course.) But what's the point of traffic to your websites and pages without conversions? You can bring a horse to water, but if you can't make it drink... that horse is a lost cause as far as buying your latest must-have product. (That adage got a little lost in the metaphor, but you get where I'm going.) If you have amazing keyword rankings and stellar headlines that are virtually impossible not to click on, how are you rewarding your consumers? The content on an ensuing page and your strategic keyword choices need to have value, intention, usefulness and the ability to solve and answer problems. Don't bamboozle your web visitors by short-changing or over-selling.

Is There Something for Everyone?

Mass appeal becomes more and more difficult in a world with fine-tuned, personalized marketing. But are there ways you can market a little bit for every type of visitor? Or, better put, is all content worth the same to each user? The answer is no. Some of your end consumers want short-form, easy, "snackable" content. Some have more existing buy-in to your brand are more invested in long-form content. There's a simple solution - any journalist will tell you it's "the inverted pyramid." Lead with your strongest material and close with your most niche, most minute details for those highly invested seekers of intention. (Moz does a great job of explaining this process.) The best part of this notion is this - you don't have to double your investment in content, but instead simply have to "remember the 'why'" while you're creating it.

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