Is Your Content Marketing Designed for the New Customer Journey?

Thanks to the rise of the internet, the explosion of social media and the development of mobile technologies to feed these two innovations, the customer buying journey has become much more self-directed. According to a Forrester, 74% of business buyers say they conduct more than half of their research online before making an offline purchase.

As a result, content marketing has emerged as an incredibly effective way to arm consumers with the information they seek and need, increase brand awareness, enhance engagement, and ultimately inspire action and conversions.

But content marketing isn’t about creating and sharing as much content as possible. It’s about creating quality content that allows you to be the best answer, whenever and wherever your audience is searching. And understanding today’s customer journey will be paramount to your content marketing success. Below is a great illustration from Forrester on the many intricacies that journey can entail. As you can see, it’s not an easy, neat sales funnel these days.

7 Tools to Uncover Customer Needs & Map the Customer Journey to Create Better Experiences

map-the-customer-journey

Marketers have become increasingly focused on the importance of understanding the customer journey and using data to lead their marketing strategies. Salesforce recently reported that 86% of senior-level marketers say that creating a cohesive customer journey is absolutely critical.

However, knowing where to start can be a daunting endeavour. But not taking action has the potential to put companies at serious risk as Gartner estimated that nearly 90% of companies expect to compete mostly on the basis of customer experience starting this year.

In Search of Voodoo: Empathize to Optimize Your Customer’s Journey on the Search & Social Web

optimize customer journeyI get to meet a lot of professionals in the marketing, advertising, communications and public relations industries where topics of conversation often revolve around content. Concerns about where to start, what tactics work best, how to plan, produce and promote all come into play right along with staffing, integration with other channels and measurement.

Of course, if you try hard enough you can worry yourself out of a job when it comes to developing a solid approach with content marketing.

On the one hand, there’s a temptation to spend a lot of time and resources developing “the perfect” strategy. On the other hand, you could also just start cranking out content and see what sticks.

6 Simple Considerations For Boosting the Marketing Performance of Content

Content Marketing AccountabilityWhile I’ve been in New York this week for the B2B Content2Conversion conference, I’ve been reflecting on some of the most common issues I see with companies trying to leverage content for increasing leads and sales.

Many companies new to content marketing miss important steps and without checklists or processes, content marketing contribution to leads and sales can be unimpressive.

Of course, not all content needs to “sell” in terms of inquiries or transactions, but for content designed with lead generation in mind, there should be some accountability or you won’t have anything to count.

While deciding the creative on your next infographic, the viral hook of your next video or which awesome thought leaders will be in your next ebook, step back for a second and consider these basic and often overlooked considerations for aligning content with marketing objectives.