Developing Content Marketing Strategy

brimageI’m currently working on developing a new campaign for my company which got me thinking about the sales value chain and how content marketing should be targeted to hit key stakeholders along this chain. This prompted me to launch a survey on how people are using social media in their personal lives versus for business. I know that I personally have completely separated Facebook from my business life and don’t really use it for anything other than to connect with friends, i.e. I don’t go around liking my favorite brands. I use LinkedIn, Twitter, WordPress, and Pinterest pretty regularly for business as I am constantly doing market research and trying to connect with others in my industry. I use Reddit,, YouTube, and others for both business and pleasure.

The question that I started thinking about was, well, how do I use social media to educate myself on products both personally and professionally? A great example is that my company is currently implementing a new task management program. My process for this was to check out the website, watch a video on YouTube demonstrating the software, read some reviews, and visited a forum to see what people were saying about their experience.

What process would an accounting manager go through to analyze the same product? Are they more likely to weight product reviews higher than reviews posted by actual users on a forum? Would they be more interested in a white paper on how the task program fit in the accounting market? These are great questions that I would like to find an answer to; how, when, and what type of content are key stakeholders using to make decisions?

If you have any great resources you would like to share I would love to hear about them! Also feel free to take my short 9 question survey on Personal and Business Use of Social Media.

Social Media Survey on Private and Business Use

social-mediaTake my new 9 question survey on social media use!

The reason for this survey is that over the next couple of months I am going to be talking in depth about the sales and marketing value chain. The reason for my interest in this is due to the somewhat disjointed content marketing strategy I have noticed of late. Marketers need to have a strong grasp on exactly who they are marketing to and what types of content they are consuming; a CFO is most likely consuming data in a different way than is a CMO. There are multiple factors that I believe make this relevant to study in further detail as a marketer.

Develop Your Content Strategy Now!

In reading about marketing trends for 20131 you’ll notice content marketing is the wave of the future. I am a strong believer that this is definitely true. The amount of information being produced is absolutely staggering; at Word Press alone they note over 30 million blog posts per month2. The problem that I see is that more than 90% tends to be junk. There are not a lot of people out there who are truly experts in what it is they are discussing. I read a lot of articles that focus on the basics of this or that. These articles are great and all but what happens when you want to dive deeper? I have found that there is a steady drop-off in quality content beyond introductory information.

So what does this mean for content marketing? Find your niche. There it is right there, I just provided my own pet peeve. However, here is why I say this; think of content marketing much like you would a business environment. There are a ton of competitors out there doing the same thing you are for most likely the same price (free!).   If people are paying for your content then good for you, you are not the target of this post as you have already shown yourself as such an expert someone is willing to pay for what you produce.

If we look at many industries over the last 100 years or so, we see the boom and bust of countless companies trying to figure out where they fit. There were over 2,000 US automakers at one time, 80 companies making computers in 1992 no longer exist, and there are countless other industries with the same result. Content marketing will go the same route. I look at my twitter feed and see it jam packed with links to content every day.  What I have come to find out is that there are really only a few people I follow that provide the information which is really valuable. So what do I do? I find myself constantly visiting their feeds directly to see what it is they are reading and positing.

As content marketing evolves I believe that there will be those who figure out how to do it successfully and those who will get left in the dust. I’m not saying that you won’t be able to produce something really great that will reach a lot of people, I’m just saying that I think it will be hard to get consistent interaction from a mass amount of people if you haven’t defined your niche. In the end it all depends on what it is you are trying to do. If you are working in B2B then I think that finding out the issues that trouble your customers should be addressed. I’m a big believer that when producing content it’s not all about you. It is encouraging to customers when you talk about their problems and see that these are the issues you regularly tackle. This is what will keep customers coming back for more.



5 Social Media Predictions for 2013 | Constant Contact Blogs

See on Scoop.itDigital and Social Media Marketing for B2B

Last year was a whirlwind year for social media, both for the networks themselves and the small businesses and organizations relying on them to reach t (5 Social Media Predictions for 2013…

Kevin Chase‘s insight:

Considering 75% of people are predominately visual in the way they perceive and learn it should be no surprise that pictures will continue to groaw as an engagement tool.

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Social Media is for Branding, not Selling | Business 2 Community | The Practical Side of Marketing

See on Scoop.itDigital and Social Media Marketing for B2B

You may have wasted massive amounts of money on advertising that had little to no chance of success.

Kevin Chase‘s insight:

Definitely makes a good point about building your brand using social media as it is much easier to connect to people who know who you are and what you are doing.


I would disagree however that social media can’t be used for selling. I think you have to walk the fine line of making sure you aren’t being obtrusive in people’s lives. However, I think social media is an extremely valuable tool to connect with people who are searching for your business type or the products that you offer. In this case if someone finds you via Linked, Twitter, Facebook, or another avenue you want to make sure that you make a convincing argument for why you?

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Engaging Decision Makers with Digital Media in B2B

B2B Do you know who the decision makers are that will be buying your product or service? Will the final say come from the CEO, or will it be in conjunction with the Marketing Executive, HR, and/or another team of executives?

In most B2B markets the buying decision may come down to the influence of a team of people. Chances are that in many cases the final decision makers are similar across each organization. The problem that many companies face is determining the right social and digital media channels to reach their target market.

One issue that I see many companies forget about is that fact that the decision makers for your product are most likely engaging digital content in different ways. A recent study I just read by Brandfog, “2012 CEO, Social Media and Leadership Survey” noted that just 2.5% of Fortune 500 CEOs are on Twitter. Obviously this would not be the most optimal way to reach CEOs however, this might be more appropriate to provide content to the CMO.

When starting a digital campaign here are some of the first things I assess:

1) Who is involved in making the purchase decisions in my target market?

2) How is each decision maker engaging in social and digital media?

3) What is my content strategy for this campaign and how can I tailor it across digital channels to be most effective for each decision maker?