Too bad it’s been said that content is king. But these days, a more accurate representation would probably be: Customer experience is king. And in a hyper-connected world where everyone is fighting for attention, great content drives great experiences.
Businesses use content marketing strategies to increase brand awareness, educate prospects and customers, and establish trust. Delivering a great customer experience increasingly means serving relevant and personalized content in a way that’s right for your customers. Giving customers the content they need, when it’s ready, ultimately leads to better results for marketers.
This means scaling your content so that it is always fresh, relevant and personalized across the many touchpoints consumers use to interact with your business.
The Importance of Personalization in Content Marketing According to recent data from McKinsey, approximately 71% of consumers expect companies to provide personalized interactions. Nearly three-quarters of her people will look elsewhere if this expectation is not met, whatever the item or service they need.
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What is content marketing?
Content marketing is a marketing approach or discipline that relies on developing different types of content and assets, with a focus on getting people to take action (e.g. sign up for a newsletter, place an order, learn more). requesting information).
Unlike paid advertising, content marketing primarily uses organic approaches to attract and engage customers. Content in this context includes written or visual assets (e.g. guides, articles, blog posts, graphics, videos, social posts, etc.). Content that requires a fee to access.
Content marketing is closely related to inbound marketing and other customer experience-based approaches. It is often used as a top funnel tactic to attract and convert prospects into leads or customers. Yet, it can also be used to nurture existing relationships and convert prospects into customers.
Here’s the official definition of content marketing from the Content Marketing Institute (CMI):
“Our focus is on creating and delivering valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and retain well-defined audiences and ultimately drive profitable customer behavior. It’s a strategic marketing approach that puts
There are three types of content marketing models:
- Paid: Content is behind a paywall or requires a purchase to access.
- possession: Content is created by a business and published on its own channels (website, blog, social media, etc.).
- Acquisition: Content is published by someone other than your company (e.g. user-generated content, influencer content, media coverage, etc.).
There are two unifying features that define the right content marketing strategy, regardless of where your content resides. Relevance and quality.
Why Marketers Should Care About Content Marketing
The consumer buying cycle is becoming a self-service process spread across multiple touchpoints. To meet consumer expectations and keep up with competitors, marketers need to produce high-quality content in bulk that can be shared effectively across various channels.
To stand out in this messy content ecosystem, you need to create personalized content at scale. Content automation tools and platforms enable businesses to create, manage, share and amplify content while facilitating scalability. In short, you need content to compete in today’s customer experience-driven landscape, and the technology to create the amount of content you need to make an impact.
How effective is content marketing?
According to Semrush’s 2022 State of Content Marketing Report, about 91% of businesses say they’ll have some success with content marketing in 2021. Most respondents said they plan to increase their content budgets and hire more content talent in 2022.
Content marketers today measure success by looking at traffic, search rankings, and leads. But this is changing. Content marketers are increasingly looking at other metrics such as engagement, conversion rate, and ROI. Of course, there are technical tools that can help with this.
For example, customer journey analytics tools such as Qualtrics monitor every interaction a customer has with a business and analyze how each part of the journey contributes to actions such as sales, conversions, and requests for information. increase.
Journey analytics evaluates all the content a customer interacts with throughout the buying cycle and how it impacts measurable outcomes (sales, new customers, conversions, etc.).
Who uses or uses content marketing tools?
The most common teams using content marketing tools are those responsible for driving website traffic, engagement, leads, and sales. Also this:
- marketing: Content is used to attract prospects and turn them into leads at the top of the funnel.
- sale: Content is used to accelerate the sales process by giving prospects the information they need to make a purchase.
- Customer experience: Content helps reduce customer churn and encourage upselling/cross-selling by keeping customers engaged post-purchase.
- Support and Service Team: Content helps reduce the number of inbound support requests by proactively addressing common customer questions and issues.
Jobs that use content marketing tools include:
- CMOs: Lead content strategy and collaborate with other executives to set content goals.
- content manager: Oversee content creation and distribution.
- content planner: Execute your content strategy and plan your content calendar.
- content writer: Create content.
- Editor: Review and approve content.
- designer: Create visuals that accompany your content.
- marketing analyst: track and report on content marketing performance metrics.
- sales manager or agent: use the content to support the sales process.
- Customer Success Manager or Agent: Keep your customers engaged with your content.
What types of tools or software enable content marketing?
A variety of tools and platforms exist to help companies create, distribute, target, and measure their content. They include:
- Content Management System (CMS) Like HubSpot and Joomla, businesses can create, store, and manage website content (web pages, blog posts, ecommerce product pages, etc.).
- Digital Experience Platform (DXP) Sitecore and Adobe Experience Manager, among others, offer robust content orchestration capabilities for digital asset management, customer data management, personalization and testing, marketing automation, and more.
- SEO software Moz Pro, Semrush and others offer tools for keyword research, content optimization, link building, and SEO rank monitoring.
- social media suite Sprout Social and Brandwatch (formerly Falcon.io) include features like social publishing, campaign optimization, and social engagement to improve the reach and impact of your posts.
- Content intelligence platform The likes of Ceralytics and Parse.ly help companies track the performance of their content across multiple channels and touchpoints.
- Content planning and team collaboration Tools like Asana and Trello help content teams manage projects and workflows, share files, create editorial calendars, and assign tasks/to-do lists.
How content marketing can help marketers succeed
Gartner points out that companies that thrive on growth, margins, and profitability typically prioritize customer experience. These companies have higher CX budgets and are nearly 30% more likely to focus on the entire customer journey, including what happens after a prospect becomes a customer.
Content plays a role in every step of the customer journey, from generating leads to building customer relationships. There are huge payoffs for companies committed to providing personalized interactions through high-quality, relevant content.
A recent McKinsey report revealed that fast-growing companies earn 40% more revenue from personalization than their competitors.
Consumers respond to this approach. That means you want personalized, relevant content from your business. According to McKinsey, nearly 80% of his consumers say personalized content is a key factor in their decision to buy or repurchase a brand.
Doing it right means creating content at scale. AI-powered content is a key driver of personalization. Brands that have invested heavily in content marketing are turning to AI to deliver more personalized content experiences to their customers.
The next step in content marketing
Globally, the content marketing industry is projected to reach 9.6 billion people by 2023. Dominant players in this industry include Oracle, HubSpot, Adobe, and Salesforce, but content marketing encompasses many types of software and services, including marketing agencies, resellers, and the technology vendors themselves .
As the demand for high-quality, personalized content continues, content marketing and the technology needed to drive it will become increasingly essential for businesses of all sizes. The proliferation of touchpoints and devices—the “how” and “where” of the customer journey—is also a key factor in the growth of content marketing.
Artificial intelligence and content technology can help marketers meet the demand for personalized content and automate many of the tasks inherent in content creation and planning. It remains an integral part of effective content creation and strategy. As companies continue to refine and improve their customer experience, content his marketing will continue to play a central role.
Here are some resources to help you take your content marketing efforts to the next level.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily MarTech. Staff authors are listed here.