“Market like the year you are in.” Gary Vaynerchuk
Is your marketing in the sync with the year you live in?
“When organizations and society are young, they are flexible, fluid, not yet paralyzed by rigid specialization and willing to try anything once.” John Gardener, Author of the book – Self Renewal
There are 4 types of companies and CMOs.
- Do not know what is content marketing (Read: Why is your Digital Marketing not effective?
- Are not convinced about the impact of content marketing so not investing (Read: Content Marketing Upsurge – The blog post for every CMO
- Convinced but do not know how to do it right so investing intermittently as a campaign (Read: Know how early movers are killing Content Marketing
- Convinced CM is a way to go in the new world and investing as a commitment
Today I am talking about the 4th category of companies. The purpose is to move companies in 1 to 3 categories to the 4th category.
“Content marketing is the only marketing left.” Seth Godin
I read about this company in one of the blog posts. (Another advantage of doing things right is people write about it)
Imagine you are a Travel Company and you are creating content which is useful for all the travellers in the world (Your target segment).
Imagine you are a Real Estate Company and you are creating content which is useful for all the home buyers and people living in the home in your city. (Your target segment).
Imagine you are a Healthcare Company/ Hospital and you are creating health, diet, and fitness related content which is useful for everyone. (Your target segment). (Cleveland Clinics Content Marketing example is worth emulating)
Here is a company which is a new age stock brokerage house. They have created an online Varsity to educate their target audience about stock investing.
But why would they do it? Why would they invest in huge content which educates their target audience about stock investing?
Most companies are struggling to get relevant traffic to their website. They are investing in ad words and various digital marketing tactics to attract people. Yet most are unhappy about the engagement with the website visitors.
This is because you are investing in the invitation card and not in the party venue. Your aggressive digital marketing may bring traffic to your website but most would be lured with tactics and others do not find anything worthwhile on the website. The website is only about product and marketing messages.
Those who are ready to buy may spend some time but for everyone else the site is useless.
A good website should be able to attract buyers from all the stages of buyers’ journey and even competitors’ customers.
This will not happen if the website is not offering any value.
I have reviewed about 50 plus posts on the Varsity website of this stock brokerage house. You would be amazed at the engagement level. Most posts have more than 100 comments.
Isn’t it enviable for every company? It is but it also takes the time, investment to create the content for the mass education of the target audience. They have created 11 subject modules and some 100 plus chapters.
“What helps people, helps business.” Leo Burnett
& they are the leaders in the stock brokerage industry.
The company I am referring to is Zerodha. You may visit their Varsity to know the level of content commitment.
“Content isn’t king, it’s the kingdom.” Lee Odden
Zerodha is perhaps enjoying this Kingdom with a massive focus on relevant content. The two key take away from their content marketing are;
- Massive commitment to the target audience relevant content creation
- Swift response to readers’ comments
Their education focussed content not only helps existing investors but it also helps in new market creation by making more people investors. Knowledge equips people to take action.
There are some more companies taking the content seriously.
Spain based Santander Bank has its personal finance website known as Prosper & Thrive. Here they create educational content on personal finance for their target audience.
Morgan Stanley is another Global leader investing in Content Marketing. Their Ideas website has a variety of interesting content includ8ng money and finance.
Discover Bank has extensive personal finance blog.
Bank of America is doing big in content marketing with their platform; Better Money Habits.
Citi Bank is the leader in the banking space. Their new content strategy is a lesson for every company – small, medium, and big.
Lemonade is a property and casualty insurance company. This tech-driven insurance company has understood the relevance of content marketing.
Oscar is another company using content marketing aggressively. This health insurance company generates content about health advice, true stories, expert insight and much more.
Their blog is valuable for readers. This is about what the target audience really cares for and interested in.
“We need to stop interrupting what people are interested in and be what people are interested in.” Craig Davis
What is Lacking?
Companies who are in the initial stage of testing the impact of content marketing suffers from the following misconceptions about Content Marketing especially blogs:
- It’s about marketing so self-promotion like any other marketing
- It’s about the company itself
- Poor quality content will sail through
- Camouflaged content will work
- Quantity will outdo quality benefits
- Poor reader experience like long sentences, long paragraphs, no proper formatting., jargonize language, everything fair in content marketing.
- Interruptions like pop-ups, distractions like much more content on the same page on the left /right everything will work.
What is Necessary?
A para from the book Experiences, the 7th era of Marketing is an essential read; “We can’t restrict our efforts to what drives immediate sales leads, because that limits what we can do. Don’t focus on persuading and promoting in order to sell. Rather, think about enabling and empowering experiences.”
Your content should do the following;
- Adding value to target audience ‘s life
- Making the brand popular
- Concerned about the buyers’ journey stages
- Concerned with buyers’ challenges
- Concerned with buyers goal
- Sharing customer success stories
- Concerned with customer experience
- Building the long-term relationship with the customers
Handpicked related post: Why is a Vibrant Blog a Mandatory Digital Marketing Asset?
Content Marketing is not about creating marketing content but it is about the marketing of target audience focussed content.
David Beebe has aptly summarised this; “Content marketing is really like a first date. If all you do is talk about yourself, there won’t be a second date.”
“Infant model of openness to new experience receptive, curious, eager and unafraid willing to try anything and above all not inhibited by fixed habits and attitudes.”John Gardener, Author of the book – Self Renewal
Yes, as the organization grows it becomes rigid and infant model gives way to a more rigid & mature model. But this is the beginning of decay.
Content Marketing is the Only Marketing Left, this quote from Seth Godin deserves all marketers’ attention.
Handpicked related post: How to be Ready for the World Beyond Advertising?