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Marketing Content Should Educate Both of You

Marketing content should also educate marketers

Content Marketing Journal

There's a lot of talk about how we need to focus on our buyers' issues and provide them educational insights to help them learn what they need to know to make buying decisions. Heck, I say it in my book...in several places, I think. I've said it on this blog, and I'll continue to say it.

But perhaps, what I haven't said here is that marketing content should also educate marketers.

Yep, you heard me.

That's one of the key payoffs you can get with a content strategy. This is why I advocate for using articles for content marketing in many cases. But I digress. Here's an example of what I mean.

Let's say you want to know which problem your prospect is working to solve. Think of this as the equivalent of a form with check boxes for "I'm interested in solving this issue - with check boxes for issues A, B or C.

Instead of the form, let's say you create a general article about the problem and then link to 3 tightly focused articles about issues A, B and C. Who is clicking to read which article?

What can you learn from that? If all your leads are reading about issue C and your nurturing program is focused more on A or B, you can shift quickly to capitalize on prospect interest. Not to mention shifting your content development plan to match up more closely.

Now, let's say that on the sidebar of the page for the article for issue A you have a registration form for a webinar about that issue. Whether or not they sign up will tell you just how interested they are. If they're willing to dedicate an hour of their time to actually attend, instead of just sign up, you've just learned something else about that prospect.

Are they in the right nurturing track based on the content they're reading?

This is where lead scoring can really help you evaluate lead interest if you create scores based on topic-related behavior. In order for this to work, you have to present your content strategically to entice leads to increase their depth of focused exploration and learning. That's how you increase your learning, as well.

Creating a content plan is not just about creating content that maps to stages across the buying process, it's about planning your content to educate you so you can increase your relevance, hence their engagement with you throughout their buying journey.

So the next time you create content, think about what both of you can learn from it. You'd be surprised what kind of insights you can glean. Think not just about one content piece, but how you can weave content together to compound your learning, and theirs.

It's kind of like dynamic puzzle pieces. Sometimes you have to shift them around to see the full picture.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Ardath Albee

Ardath Albee, CEO & B2B Marketing Strategist of her firm Marketing Interactions, helps companies with complex sales increase and quantify marketing effectiveness by developing and executing interactive eMarketing strategies driven by compelling content.

Her book, eMarketing Strategies for the Complex Sale, was published by McGraw-Hill.

Her articles and blog posts have been used for university ezines, published in CRM Today, Selling Power, Rain Today and Enterprise CRM News. Marketing Profs has incorporated her blog posts into a number of their "Get to The Point" newsletters.