It’s not enough to just build community through Social Media channels. To grab and hold your customer’s interest you need to provide them with something of value. By focusing on Content Marketing you can provide quality content for specific customer personas and deliver it where they will find it.
This past week I attended (via webcast) my first MaRS Discovery District Entrepreneurship 101 lecture series. This week’s presentation, on Marketing Communications, was presented by Startup and Entrepreneur Marketing expert Mark Evans http://www.markevans.ca/ . In Mark’s presentation he told us how to use story telling as a basis for creating interesting content that will be relevant to customers and discussed different ways that story can be brought to your audience. These webcasts are archived at http://www.marsdd.com/event_series/entrepreneurship-101/ .
During Mark’s presentation he commented that the area of concentration for marketing in 2013 will be the development of Content Marketing, which spurred me on to make this my current blog topic. I also spent some time researching white papers on content marketing from Eloqua (recently acquired by Oracle) and Marketo.
To come up with a great content marketing campaign strategy, you need to understand what your target market is and what are their concerns and problems. Similar to understanding this for defining your product features. From this platform you can determine the content that you want to create. Content can come from a variety of sources within your company, or you can engage outside experts to help you create it.
Content marketing has been around for years. Some original delivery methods, that still work, were whitepapers and case studies. There is an arsenal of ways to deliver content , such as websites, videos, blogs, ebooks, “how-tos”. The delivery methods that you adopt should be driven by the market. What online communities does your market belong too, and how do they like to receive information.
Your content marketing campaign strategy should consider specific goals that you want to achieve by creating content. These goals should be measurable business goals, such as lead generation, customer satisfaction, and increased revenue. During execution of the campaign, you need to gather relevant metrics to monitor and report on the achievement of these goals. This will help you to monitor and adjust the campaign where needed. As well, it helps with gaining executive support in your company for your efforts.
Content marketing works for both B2B and B2C communities. The point is to define your market, determine things they are interested in, and then get out there on the community forums and tell your story.