“New Marketing strategies must focus on creating experiences that deliver value that goes beyond the product or service.” book Experiences, 7th Era of Marketing,
Every company is talking about customer experience these days. However, hardly few can really create a differentiated customer experience (CX). Marketing departments have learned Content is king, so many companies are creating content. However, hardly a few have really understood what content-driven marketing is. Many think, content marketing as digital or social media marketing, however, Content Marketing is NOT about digital or social media marketing.
“12% of employees eat because they are hungry. 88% of employees eat because it is 1 o’clock.” Mokokoma Mokhonoana
Probably 12% of the companies are focusing on customer experience and content marketing because they have realized the importance and they know how to do it, 88% are either oblivious of these new competitive advantages or doing it because others are doing it. They neither have realized its business importance nor do they know how to do it.
Herd – Me too, mentality is prevalent in every aspect of life including business and marketing.
The interesting thing is content-driven marketing also enhances customer experiences. If done right, it can serve the dual purpose.
“Content Marketing is about HELP, not Hype”, says Jay Baer. When the marketing department is out to Help the present and future customers, the organization changes. They quickly propel the organization into the blue ocean.
However the marketing department alone cannot decide, it is the top management who decides what the sustainable competitive advantage would be for the company.
Delaney Turner in his piece; How content marketing drives the customer experience writes;
- Seventy percent of marketing executives expect their content marketing (CM) budget to increase next year.
- Two-thirds of CMOs say developing deeper, richer customer experiences (CX) is their top priority.
However, the interesting thing is both CX and CM could be interrelated.
- Content is a major means by which your customers and prospects find you, follow you, and – ideally – buy from you.
- Content to a large degree shapes the experience you deliver to your customers, regardless of where they are in their buying journey.
Content brings your story to life in the hearts and minds of your market. A compelling story can create a compelling customer experience that drives better results.
Content Marketing is so powerful that it not only enables changes in the organization culture, it also built the brand in the external world.
Content Marketing is about storytelling, it’s about offering the information your customer/target audience wants to ease their life.
Storytelling is about branded stories; employees’ stories, customer stories, and customer experience stories. This is about creating content as a commitment towards the customer not as a product launch campaign. It has to be an ongoing project and 2nd nature of the company.
A website often is a product brochure or description of what the company does. Today, the best website experience offers more than just product information.
“Content marketing is really like a first date. If all you do is talk about yourself, there won’t be a second date.” David Beebe
The most effective sites are featuring content on the home page. Consider leading with content and real value. Lead with something that’s interesting to the customer, and the customer may become interested in you.
Easing life of the target audience and offering better customer experience shall be the agenda of a content marketing strategy.
My observations and experience about some of the Indian companies creating content are:
- Most of the CMOs and CEOs are not aware of what content marketing is and how it connects with better customer experience.
- Lacks content strategy,
- No persona-driven content,
- Creates generic content,
- No landing page, unable to collect visitors email ID
- The language lacks simplicity,
- Storytelling skills are missing,
- There is no connection between content creation and customer experience.
- Unaware of how better customer experience impact on the bottom-line
If your content is not solving any of the problems that are keeping your customers up at night, your content is futile and not enhancing the customer experience.
Doug Kessler of Velocity Partners recommends the following action points:
- Make your content marketing strategy start with the audience, not with your products and your agenda. What do your audiences need to know?
- Think about using content throughout the customer experience – not just at the top of the funnel.
- Expose your content to your customer-facing people – make sure your sales and customer service teams know about new pieces and how they might use them.
- Make sure content is driving your social, SEO and lead nurturing strategies – trying to do these things without content is marketing with a serious handicap.
In the post Enviable Content Marketing Lessons for BFSI Companies from a Startup I have written about how some BFSI companies are doing it right.
Relevant content drives people towards the brand, in an attention-deficit world, relevant content bring the brand to the attention of the target audience, and great customer experience makes them a fan of the brand. What more an enterprise needs?
Marketers have an opportunity to create wonderful experiences with relevant and useful content. Useful Content differentiates a brand. Product or Service experiences coupled with Content experiences differentiate a brand. Lack of differentiation puts enormous pressure on your bottom-line.
“In a sea of mediocre content, a brave tone can be a big differentiator.” Ann Handley
Are you ready with your Content Marketing Strategy? Is Customer Experience the soul of your Content Marketing Strategy?
You may also like to read: Why Should CFOs Focus on Customer Experience for Better Results?