hidden content

We create content every day, whether we realise it or not. Content doesn’t have to be limited to your blogs, podcasts and social media posts. Of course, there are your sales pages, landing pages and other pieces of your website. But what about the content that goes the extra mile? Your hidden content?

What is hidden content?

You might be thinking that hidden content is the same thing as gated content. You know, the stuff you have to enter your email to be able to see or read. But I like to think about hidden content as slightly different.

It’s the kind of copy that you only see if you take a small action. It’s the special bits of content that are only for those who are definitely curious about what you do.

In this blog, I’m going to cover some examples of hidden content and how you can make better use of them to help you get more customers.

Out of Office

The humble out of office is one of the most overlooked pieces of content. You only see someone’s out of office when they are well, not there. So when most people leave a short, curt message with the basics of when they will be back – you can take a great opportunity here.

My out of office last summer got mentioned on social media, made two people laugh and had someone contact me to tell me how brilliant it was after I’d come home. These are all people who don’t normally send me a conversational email.

So why do it for the out of office?

We’re used to seeing these emails ping back into our inboxes. We don’t usually read them but when something does catch our eye – usually a funny return subject line – we take a look.

And there, in last summer’s out of office, was a story with a punchline. Then I linked out to one of my blog posts on camping. Plus, some other things that I help with.

I used this much-maligned email automation as a chance to build a relationship with the people in my inbox. And for each of those who took the time to reply, there are others who I made smile without even realising.

When it comes to an out-of-office, people tend to fall into one of two camps. The OOO is on and they are outta here. Or the other kind who never use one because they are checking their emails when they are away. The latter makes me feel a little sad. We all need a week off. No one will begrudge a holiday, no matter what the work emergency. So stick your OOO on and make it work for you.

Thank you pages

I tell all my mentoring clients to build a thank you page for everything they do. These are the pages that you get sent to usually after you sign up for a freebie. Better yet, send them there when they’ve bought something from you.

A thank you page is a great way for a potential client to get to know you. And for a new client to feel like they’ve bought the right thing.

Here are some ideas of what you can put on a thank you page:

  • A video of you explaining who you are, what you do and what happens next.
  • An invite to your social media platforms
  • Signpost them to another piece of content that will help them in their next step.
  • A funny song or video to entertain them.

I love a good thank you page. Every time I land on one – and that’s not as often as I’d like – I make a note of what they’ve done and what I think is quite clever.

I’ve even had people try to upsell me on a thank you page. A sort of thank you discount and you’ve got 24 hours to buy this thing that you’re interested in.

All of it is very clever and converts your leads into sales.

Welcome page

Similar to the thank you page is the welcome page. Now, this is for people who deliver memberships, digital products and online courses. But if you’re taking any kind of payment through your site, you could build a welcome page.

These are a bit trickier to do without an expensive plug-in, especially if you’re going to personalise it. But a good welcome page should be like a map that shows your client what they need to do next. It needs to explain how everything works and where they can find what they need.

This page is going to make their experience with you as frictionless as possible. So you need to test it as much as possible. But it’s also your golden opportunity to upsell. They already trust you enough to buy from you, show them what else they can buy and why.

Direct Messages

You need to think about direct messages as content as well. You may well be doing your best customer service on DMs but it’s also a chance to share something extra with them.

My very first LinkedIn voice note came from the lovely Mitali Deypurkaystha. It prompted a conversation about her accent as I couldn’t place it other than it being somewhere from the north. Being from the north, there is nothing worse than someone asking to “speak to that nice Scottish girl”, when they mean me with my Yorkshire accent. Not wanting to get it wrong, it’s always best to ask (and I’m glad I did because the answer was not straightforward).

Mitali asked me if I wanted to write a book. Of course, I want to write a book, I write for a living. But actually, I’d never gone past that first thought for anything other than fiction. Mitali then sent me her guide, which was flipping brilliant and got my brain turning on all the ideas I could write about.

Now I have a little list of ideas and when I’m ready to write that book, guess who I’ll be working with?

DMs have bad press for being a bit sleazy and overly salesy. Goodness knows, there are messages on my LinkedIn that I look at, eye roll and delete. But there is nothing wrong with having a clear DM plan and customer journey if that’s how you want to roll. And thanks to Mitali’s DM strategy, we now talk on a regular basis and is one of the most wonderful people I’ve had the pleasure to meet.

Find your hidden content opportunities

There are plenty of opportunities to make the most of this hidden content, you just need to look for them. Next time you set up a new lead magnet, sign up page or sales page, look at the journey your customer will take. How can you improve this? What can you add to it? How can you make them feel special for getting to this place?

Remember, those who see your hidden content are the people who have already taken action on your website. You want to treasure these wonderful people and build your relationship with them.