Content marketing: Are you wasting your resources?

15 Aug 2017

  • Digital Marketing
  • Content

By: The Big Smoke Partners

Brands are investing more money into content marketing every quarter, but how many brands are measuring effectively the ROI of these activities and truly getting enough out of their strategy?

Very few business practices have been disrupted by the evolving digital and tech landscape quite like marketing, seeing an almost daily shift towards trends and activities that require constant evolving. Marketers have watched the dissolution of conventional marketing methods while witnessing the launch of LinkedIn to Facebook’s Messenger app release, and by 2012 Social Media budgets were up by 64 per cent and an increase in budget to produce content for those sites and company blogs took focus. The platform became irrelevant but the key ingredient remained – compelling content.

This resulted in companies creating internal content strategies designed to engage consumers with multiple touch points but ultimately nurture ‘owned media’. Content marketing has since been used to drive not only sales, but long term relationships as brands realise the power of their voice as more than a 720 x 90 banner.

In the past year, 75 per cent of companies have increased their investment in content marketing with 43 per cent increasing staff levels to ensure resources are available to build not only a powerful content marketing team but to ensure that the strategy works in alignment with other digital components. For marketers, a greater emphasis is focused on tracking trends of human behaviour and how their marketing activities are able to redefine their ongoing connection to consumers. Consumers constantly shift their device habits, but there is a consistent goal across the board regardless of channel – communication that gets cut-through and bypasses brand blindness.

While the power of storytelling is well understood, brands are still often unsure how to place real value on the content they produce and then ensure that the activities are connected to broader digital marketing efforts. This often leaves brands producing many pieces of content that either no one reads, or are not trackable in terms of an ROI.

"Content Marketing is all the only marketing that’s left."

Seth Godin

The importance brands place on the content they produce starts to become the catalyst around how they connect with their consumers and equally become credible. A crucial element of this is that the content starts playing the medium between consumer feedback and for the brand to better understand what customers actually want – and then how to deliver it. Without nurturing that connection as the core value around the content produced, brands risk creating content that has little relevance to their audience and drives little to no value. The main risk being, they start to produce more noise for their consumers to ignore. Yet understanding this well, means playing effectively in a space where the brand’s evolving digital strategy focuses on content as a driver. This play increases the scope of brand equity and gains the attention of the very people you are trying to convert.

However, a crucial issue many brands face is that while they believe they are producing content that is valuable, they aren’t sure how to cost-effectively distribute it, or measure it. This then places an emphasis on the knowledge required to truly utilise this space well, and understand the measurement frameworks required that are far more nuanced than a CTR or page view.

Content that is end-user focused has the unique ability to provide measurable data that helps shapes a brand’s messaging, offering and audience reach. Yet a brand with the skill sets required to do this effectively only creates content that has defining parameters for measurement. The basic metrics around how content is consumed and how it ultimately performs should be broken down into clear measurable that provide valuable data. Gaining insight into these areas is not a difficult task, however, it can be quite overwhelming for many content producers.

Understanding the reason why your company creates content is important, but just as relevant is the measuring of that content and ensuring that your team nurtures the growing skillset required to truly compete in this space. Analysing consumption and how that impacts lead generation is an evolving skill set and requires consistent growth.

Yet, the commitment to content marketing and the measurement of these activities is only one-half of the strategy, with the most successful brands being equally committed to the growth of their team as they navigate the changing roles of consumers. An agile efficient team allows a company to produce more than new material and digital plans, but a pathway capitalises on opportunity and drives the company forward.

Brands are still often unsure how to place real value on the content they produce. This often leaves brands producing many pieces of content that either no one reads, or are not trackable in terms of an ROI.

In a digital age where the way consumers are engaged, connected and ultimately feel safe to buy, sees changing goal posts that require agile brands committed to content marketing and its benchmarks. Therefore the approach towards real-world, up-to-date skills requires truly supporting company strategies and driving productivity across the board. A team who has had significant input towards their own knowledge sets and growth have a higher probability of executing content marketing strategies effectively and delivering transparent results to stakeholders.

Lead the content marketing charge by joining all the dots to drive real results. ADMA is currently accepting students to take part in their Content Marketing Certificate.

This course is designed to help you master your content marketing capabilities and drive business growth.

This article was originally published on The Big Smoke website.

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