Tuned

Marketing, musings, and the future

Losing Control

In the world of Mad Men, the message can be controlled. But in modern day marketing and advertising, we have lost that control. The rise of social media means that your brand, your reputation is in the hands of the public.

In an instant, a user can post to facebook a complaint or tweet a brand-tarnishing comment. That’s why companies are increasingly adopting content management strategies.

If you are still looking at your digital content as a static, weighty, obligatory writing exercise, consider the following from Wikipedia:

Content marketing is an umbrella term encompassing all marketing formats that involve the creation and sharing of content in order to engage current and potential consumer bases. Content marketing subscribes to the notion that delivering high-quality, relevant and valuable information to prospects and customers drives profitable consumer action. Content marketing has benefits in terms of retaining reader attention and improving brand loyalty.[1]

The purpose of this information is not to spout the virtues of the marketer’s own products or services, but to inform target customers and prospects about key industry issues, sometimes involving the marketer’s products. The motivation behind content marketing is the belief that educating the customer results in the brand’s recognition as a thought leader and industry expert.

Getting started in content management is simpler than it sounds. Step one is the classical marketing step of targeting your customer and understanding what content is important to them. Then, think about the types of content that you can draw in to your site/digital vehicles.

A simple way to start this is to use Twitter. Take 15 minutes each day and find the top 3 things that happened in your industry. Retweet and set these up as a feed on your webpage. Smartly done you will gain a reputation as a place to go for industry highlights.

A more complex but very rich way to to generate content is to use a more formal crowdsourcing strategy on a web landing page.  This can either be done through linkage to interesting blogs you have found or by engaging a series of experts who agree to write articles and you open up the articles for user responses. Having key conversations flow through your website will start to draw in users.

Finally, many larger corporation are creating online publication strategies. An example of this is the P&G site “Man of the House“, a site that simply serves up information and insights for Dads. The movement is from marketing to publishing….and thinking more like a journalist about hooking your audience based on interest.

To get started, think about these three questions:

1) What subjects do your customers need to keep on top of to do their jobs?

2) Are there areas that customer spend a tremendous amount of time looking for data and you could become a trusted source of serving that data up?

3) How can you integrate your content strategy and creation with your other marketing vehicles to drive down the funnel from awareness to purchase?

Much as I like Mad Men, that era is behind us in advertising. While some marketeers bemoan our lack of control in the social media age, smart marketeers embrace the ability to build community and impressions through good content strategy.

For more information on content strategy, check out:

The content marketing institute website.

Copyblogger’s Content Marketing 101

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This entry was posted on April 11, 2012 by in Marketing Mojo and tagged .

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