Search on Content Marketing and nearly 400,000 items will appear.  Clearly, there’s a lot of marketing energy going into this new competency and discipline.  Content Marketing is among the largest line items on the marketing budget and encompasses content creation, distribution, management and creation. It’s a bit unsettling to realize that given all this energy and investment, marketers still aren’t sure how to measure the value of content marketing. According to Gartner’s 2019 study, CMOs struggle to align marketing metrics with business priorities. Only 39% of marketers say their organizations are effective at content marketing.

Marketers have been creating content since the beginning of time, so what ‘s different now?

Add Intelligence to Your Content

The extensive number of channels and the fact that they’re always on has changed everything. It reminds me a little of when television went from programming on a few channels and a network that “turned” off (remember when there was just “snow” if you fell asleep while watching TV?) to hundreds of channels and a system that’s 24/7. You need a lot of content to keep viewers, with this level of access to that many channels, fed. It’s never been more challenging to have the right content on the right channels at the right time. Nor has it been more important to be able to measure the value of this investment.

So, this is where the “intelligence” part of the equation comes into play.

Apply intelligence to your content marketing

Be smart about your content – apply intelligence

There are several ways data can help you make more intelligent content decisions and avoid wasting your precious marketing budget.  Right out of the gate, data can help you decide what topics and formats are most preferred by your content consumer, based on the personas you have created.  Then investigate what topics this audience is reading and sharing, including what content your competitors are producing. But don’t limit yourself only to these topics. As a thought leader you need to be ahead of the pack, so also consider what content they should be reading. Then select topics that are best aligned with your organization’s priorities and initiatives. Data is instrumental in making timing and channel decisions here as well.

All of your content should be tied to a business outcome so you can establish metrics beyond views, clicks, and shares.  Content should always be moving the consumer forward in their relationship with your organization.  Appropriate metrics might include engagement, conversations, proposals, velocity, win rate, and of course ultimately, revenue. Use data to set performance targets and then measure how well the content is enabling you to achieve your business outcome as well as what is and isn’t working.

Summary: Creating content isn’t the hard part—creating Relevant, Informative, Timely and Entertaining (RITE) content is the challenge. It requires having the right data and insights to make the right decisions about what content to create and publish, when, in what format, in what channel, and for which segments and personas. In our opinion, these are fundamental questions for every marketer and something every marketing leader should have top of mind. Data is key to being able to answer these questions and ensure your content is properly synched to your customers’ buying journey. If your organization is producing and “airing” content and hasn’t yet mapped your customers’ buying journey, it’s time to regroup.

Make your content sync intelligently with your customers journey. Learn how with our Customer Journey Mapping Workshop

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