Content marketing was the big thing for marketers in 2011 and for those still catching up it’s forming a big part of your 2012 marketing strategy too. But now that everyone seems to be jumping on the content bandwagon it’s becoming even more challenging for marketers to set themselves apart from the competition.
We all want to engage, nurture and provide added value – so how can we go beyond that – what’s next?
My source of inspiration for this blog is eConsultancy’s article “The mainstreaming of content marketing: ten implications“. Doug writes about his predictions on how he thinks the digital marketing space will change as content marketing becomes the norm. Some real food for thought – here’s a summary of Doug’s predictions:
- Broadcast-style marketing will make a comeback
- Your content brand will be as important as your overall brand
- It will be harder and harder to earn downloads
- Content production will become commoditised
- We’ll have to work much harder to earn people’s contact details
- Active shares will be the killer metric
- Cross-promotion will become essential
- Trigger events will be the new personas
- Library marketing will be the next critical discipline
- Social CRM will become the core technology for most marketing departments
- Get ready to raise your game
For me, where we’re starting to see fatigue is lead generation tactics. There is a such an overload of content out there and it’s getting more and more challenging to engage people through content marketing and getting prospects to carry out the action you want them to – download, sign up, enter, share. Content needs to be timely, hot, relevant and slick for someone to part with their details.
The interesting opportunity that lies ahead for me is ‘content mapping‘ – so being more intelligent with your content and linking it in with customer buying stages and personas. The right content showing at the right time is the name of the game. We’re all good at distributing our new piece of content to everyone but not everyone is interested at that precise point in time. Linking behavioural marketing with content is definitely the new edge.
There’s also a real missed opportunity that many are not taking advantage of – go back to previous content and update it/link it/cross promote it to something current – an upcoming event or webinar etc. Yes, these activities are more time-intensive but the payback should mean highly engaged, timely and hopefully ready-to-purchase prospects.
For me the last point about raising your game runs true all the time to be honest. Marketers everywhere need to be continuously innovating, raising the bar and striving to lead rather than follow.