To Content Marketers…with Love

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No doubt you are excited from the sheer amount of information you’ve absorbed during the annual Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH a few weeks ago.  From what I hear, read and discussed, it was another wonderful production from Joe Pulizzi and gang to bring over 3,200 marketers to learn and brush up on their content marketing skills.

I can only imagine the buzz words, acronyms and new technology platforms that were introduced during that week.  The sessions were aplenty, the keynote speakers were electric and the networking opportunities were abundant with LinkedIn connection transactions ringing off the hook!

You’re ready…you have a plan…you’re going to start the content revolution.

I beg of you, from the marketing department, please, please, please pump the breaks and be cautious and courteous with your recommendations.  Content marketing is a tricky thing.  It’s a long term marketing thing.  It’s a needed, but methodical thing.  If you are a B2C marketing department, the focus is on customer acquisition and retention.  If you are a B2B marketing department, the focus is on lead generation and sales support.

What should you do with your new found information?  Here are my 7 Do’s and Don’ts when bringing those action plans back to the marketing department or to your agency clients:

DO…a little research around gaps and opportunities for content marketing and how it can assist in the sales process prior to making recommendations.  A SWOT is a perfect place to start.

DO…know the business goals and marketing department metrics before suggesting a content marketing focus.  We and the business have certain metrics to hit and knowing them is your first commitment.

DON’T…inject content marketing into every single campaign strategy.  It has its place in the B2B or B2C funnel.  It’s your job to when and how.

DO…focus your content around customer acquisition and/or retention.  That’s what it’s all about…driving new customers and keeping them engaged.

DO…understand the marketing machine moves fast and is tactical in nature.  We all would love to have time to strategize and think, but in reality, there is never time.  We move fast and content’s place may not be in the cards right now…don’t get discouraged.

DO…your due diligence on the sales and marketing relationship at your company or client.  This is very important to finding your ‘low hanging fruit’ and small wins to benefit marketing and hopefully sales.

DON’T…forget ROI.

Now, some would say that I’m a hater as “that traditional marketing guy who didn’t go and doesn’t get it”.  And I hope I don’t come across that way. Trust me when I say that content marketing IS a good idea, but you have to be properly structured around it and need to take the time to strategically implement it. Do that, and you’ll be far more successful in your overall brand-building efforts than if you rush to jump on the latest trends.

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