Content marketing isn’t just another arrow in your quiver — our panel of top marketing professionals argue that when it’s used correctly, it’s a nuclear-grade weapon in the war for customer engagement and real ROI.
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Content is king, and content marketing is essential in a world where increasingly savvy consumers are shying away from the hard sell, but still looking for reasons to trust a business with their cold, hard cash.
In our latest webinar, “Content marketing: The most important tool in a CMO’s toolbox,” VB analyst Stewart Rogers and Jun Group COO Corey Weiner talk about how to nail your content marketing strategy. Here are some of the top takeaways our panel of experts have for you.
1. Set the tone
Throughout the buying process, from the top of the funnel and every step of the way down, your content needs to take the right tone.
“The key is that you have to start with knowing your customer,” says Weiner. “Once you know your customer, you’ll know how you want to talk to them.” Who are you trying to reach, and what are you trying to communicate to them? How do they expect to be spoken to?
Rogers notes that the traits you choose and the way you intend to write content on your website and everywhere else is intrinsically tied to what business you’re in and how you make money.
For instance, a service industry company will use complex language to demonstrate their mastery of the category. A product-led business will take a friendly, persuasive, and direct tone to get a user to click on that Buy Now button.
2. Document and share
Once you’ve settled on your company’s tone — formal, casual, humorous, direct, educational, etc. — the most important thing you can do right out of the gate is document that learning, because it’ll drive your strategy in more than one way.
A tone document, with correct and incorrect copy examples, helps keep the message consistent across marketing.
Perhaps even more important, documentation is key for getting executive buy-in.
Creating a business case around content marketing, creating a strategy, getting that tone of voice and having it all documented will get you that green light, so you can leap to the next step: employee buy-in.
3. Mine your resources
Hidden behind unexpected titles and job descriptions are the content rockstars who can help you get your marketing produced and delivered.
“Documentation gives you a way to distribute it around the business and get buy-in from staff,” Rogers says. “It gets them to raise their hand and say they’d like to be involved.”
4. Develop a killer content marketing team
“One of the things clear from the research,” Rogers says, “is structuring the content marketing team for the best effect is something that needs to be gotten right.”
Creating relevant content requires broader, multi-faceted perspectives than just the C-level crew in a conference room. Listen to your internal subject matter experts across the organization — introduce tech people, product people, and sales people, Weiner urges. “By adding people who don’t do marketing every day, we got insights that were really quite valuable,” says Weiner.
Executives are always looking at the bottom line — but content marketing ROI is notoriously hard to calculate.
The lost opportunity cost is almost always high — neglecting the personalization demands of digital citizens, for instance, almost always drives them away. But there are some trackable content marketing metrics:
- Brand awareness marketing such as sponsored events create trackable opportunities for the sales team
- Google analytics and other tools can track engagements at a granular level as customers move through the funnel
- Content promotion, depending on the channel, is especially trackable — particularly email promotions
- On social sites, mechanisms like UTM codes under URLs help you understand where results came from, and what messages generated them
After this webinar, you’ll know:
- How to design a content marketing program that complements your marketing initiatives
- The way to find your voice – and how to adhere to it across media and platforms
- Which internal professionals to target for particular platforms (and how to get them to agree to do it)
- The benefits of content marketing, such as lead generation, expanded social presence, cementing brand recognition, and building individual executives’ brands
- How to determine the ROI of content marketing, plus the tools and metrics to use.
- Stewart Rogers, Director of Marketing Technology, VB Insight
- Mitchell Reichgut, CEO, Jun Group
- Wendy Schuchart, Moderator, VentureBeat
This webinar was sponsored by Searchmetrics, Inc.