There has been a lot of talk recently about marketing teams overproducing content. At Content Marketing World, we heard keynotes about slowing down and creating valuable content. At Trackmaven’s Spark roadshow stop in San Francisco, Allen Gannett, CEO of Trackmaven kicked off the morning talking about how we have become very good at distributing content, but not very good a creating content that is worth distributing. Ouch! Sounds like we are producing content that is just out there to hopefully get some eyeballs instead of content that is really meaty and valuable to our customers. I call this content creation addiction.
The speakers offered a few ways we can break our content creation addiction and start creating meaningful content that our prospects actually want to read and find useful.
1. Raise the Bar on Creativity
Allen suggested that instead of creating as much content as we can, we should spend more time thinking of really incredible ways to engage our prospects.
How does this look in practice? We may fail a few times, but we need to try. Allen talked about how a lot of marketers are very creative people. But because we are in the workplace, we think we need to contain that creative mind and focus on the latest very black tie business whitepaper. Yes, we need those, but let your creative flag fly!
At EverString we have tried to get creative in engaging our audience. For example, we have this direct mailer were we send key target prospects an artisan peanut butter and jelly kit. Because sales and marketing are like peanut butter and jelly. Get it?! It’s fun and cute and it is an opportunity to delight our prospects. Our sales team loves calling folks after they get these kits. They are almost always pretty jazzed.
2. Start Personalizing Content for the Buyers With the Greatest Potential Revenue Impact
In the room today when EverString’s VP of Marketing, Dayna Rothman, said to the audience, “how many of you have heard of ABM?”. Everyone raised their hands. Account-Based Marketing is gaining more and more traction as being the viable compliment to you existing traditional marketing efforts to bring in more of the accounts that matter most to your business.
ABM requires selecting accounts that are the best fit for your business, the ones that could potentially have substantial revenue impact, and ask your team to personalize their messages and content for those accounts. It’s a lot of pressure. If you pick the wrong accounts, you could be wasting your teams’ time, or even miss out on a major opportunity that would be a relatively quick sales cycle with the right time and effort.
We use predictive marketing to help us choose out target accounts. We just uploaded a list of opportunities to our predictive platform, and using applied data science and machine learning, our predictive platform identified net-new accounts that looked like our current open opportunities. With this data-driven approach, we felt confident spending some additional time to create unique content for this audience.
Implementing an account-based content approach is a great way to break your addiction to creating content that doesn’t rock the socks of your target audience—content that doesn’t help them solve any pressing problem for their business. By focusing your time and effort on target accounts as part of an Account-Based Marketing strategy, you are more likely going to create content that actually helps your audience, content that they actually want to read, and that moves the needle for your business.
Below are a few of the great account-based content ideas that Dayna mentioned. Get more here!
- Use a platform like Vidyard to customize a video experience for your target account. This platform syncs to our marketing automation tool and CRM so we can keep tabs of who is watching.
- Add a custom cover to an existing ebook with an account’s logo on it, and change the introduction to reflect something unique to the target account. The prospects will be excited to receive something personal and are more likely to read something that is personalized for them and their business.
- Do you have a big account like Microsoft or HP on your ABM list? Put on a webinar just for the account, and give a presentation on something unique to a problem that the business faces.
3. Remember You are Creating Content for Other Humans
Tara-Nicholle Nelson, former VP of Marketing at MyFitnessPal took us back to the basics of being human to remind us we are working with people who have problems, and needs, and a biology that wants things like soda, french fries, and candy while also truly wanting to lose weight. I mean I love french fries (and chocolate), but I also like to be fit. We’re all human.
The people you are marketing to are human, so talk to them like you would talk to your colleagues! Instead of just laying out how your product helps a business with a standard ebook, start by saying something like, “we know it’s tough to meet the demands of your sales team with a constant influx of high-quality leads—we feel your pain! And we are here to help.” Because that is how you talk around your office and in meetings. We don’t have to be so buttoned up all the time.
Check out this slide Allen showed us a marketer’s brain and a consumer’s brain…
SAME BRAIN! Rest assured if you market to someone like you would want to be marketed to, you will start getting the results you are looking for with your content.
The first step to breaking a cycle is recognition of the problem! For more examples of creative content, check out our resources center here.