We’ve all heard the saying that content is king and if anything, that statement is now truer than ever. From web-based white papers and article postings to email marketing, it seems that everyone is producing material designed for consumption – be it text, video, infographics or some combination of the sort. And, everyone is producing A LOT of it.
Last year’s joint study by the Content Marketing Institute and Marketing Profs supports the continued explosion in content marketing. Among the findings:
– Nine out of 10 organizations employ content marketing and on average, rely on 12 different content marketing tactics for achieving their goals.
– On average, marketers spend 33 percent of their budgets on content marketing, and the majority (54 percent) say they will increase content marketing spend in the next 12 months.
But with all this content creation and distribution, are b2b companies seeing actual results? Many companies are caught up in the content creation frenzy, blindly pushing out scads of information to continually feed the beast.
As a veteran PR and marketing professional, I can guarantee you that those companies that are enjoying the most success from their content marketing efforts are taking a more strategic approach to what kind of content is being developed, whom it’s being provided to, and when. Having exactly the right content delivered to the right prospect at the exact right time makes all the difference between it getting bookmarked or trashed.
Not every lead is a real prospect, and not every prospect is at the same stage of the buy cycle. Companies must learn to analyze where each prospect currently “is” in their buying process to understand what type of content will have the most impact. They also need to understand what types of content can be used to nurture those prospects that are generally just “kicking the tires” and not yet ready to buy. We’ve all had the experience of walking into a store to browse and being run off by a pushy salesperson on commission. You might have eventually bought something in that store, but a hard sell too early in the selection process is a turn-off.
Content is a good thing, but it can be an even better thing when there is a well-defined method to its dissemination. Ensuring your content has relevancy to each prospect increases its value exponentially.
Does your company have a way to understand which prospects are at which stage of the buy cycle? And do you know exactly what types of content are right for each stage? Share your thoughts!