The way people consume content is changing radically. Just a few years ago, the goal of content marketing was to bring visitors (prospects) to your website. Content was designed to be viewed ON YOUR WEBSITE. However, new content forms emerged, repositioning social channels as the primary content destination, rather than pass-throughs to your website. A seismic shift has rocked the landscape.
Developing an off-site content strategy and a team that could implement the vision on Facebook, Medium, SnapChat, iTunes, Youtube, and Instagram soon became the norm. After the shift occurred, these networks were no longer seen as purely promotional channels — they were viewed as primary content destinations. Podcast producers, live-stream video producers, graphic artists, and film makers would start to replace some writers, as textual content (words) were no longer the holly grail. Formats like podcasting, live streaming, photos, and video continued to grow in value and the trend continues today.
Every day people watch hundreds of millions of hours on YouTube. The average viewing session on mobile is now more than 40 minutes. Video views are growing while blog “reads” are flat.
Focus On the Customer – Not Your Product
Julie Jares, the director of digital content strategy at VMware said, “One of our bigger challenges is that when we work with stakeholders and business units, they are often focused inward on their products and what they want to do. It’s our job to get them to step back, refocus, and think about the customer.”
Get to know your customers and prospects, work on understanding their pain points. Get them to realize that we’re trying to help solve their problems, too.
The Customer is Now in Control
Today, the customers is now in total control over their buying cycles. Customers and prospects (for the most part) only reach out to sales people when they’re ready to buy and talk price .
Manage Your Reputation
Today, content is the face of your company to the world. For many, it is also the center of your reputation. Reputations are hard to build and easy to tear down.
Test, Test, Test
Step back, refocus, and think about the customer. Testing, iterating, and measuring. That’s what makes us successful. Create targeted, relevant content, designed to be shown at the right time and the right point in the journey. Serving up the most impactful content at the right decision point will increase your conversions and ROI.
Turn Mistakes into Best Practices
To many companies are still focusing the story on themselves rather than their customer base or prospects. Understanding your customers pain points and addressing them is the first step to forming a content marketing strategy that works.