There is an incredible number of must-do's, technologies, trends, fads and watch-outs for marketing managers today. We read about what is getting disrupted, how technology is changing the role of brands, the attention span of customers, measuring impact of social, ROI of wearables... the list is endless.
In all of that, content marketing is trying to establish itself as the future of marketing strategy. Slowly but surely, the spend and attention being diverted to this philosophy is increasing.
The latest State of Content Marketing report reflects that:
With many brands, if you can't measure the ROI, you can't justify the strategy. But taking a step back from the numbers, I believe there are just two questions you need to answer, to see if you need content marketing.
Yes, just two questions is all it takes.
Q1. Do you want customers or do you want an audience?
There is an remarkable difference between the two. Customers self-select themselves based on their circumstances or characteristics, and are always perfect for the product that we are trying to sell. An audience, on the other hand, gathers for a deeper reason. As Robert Rose puts it, audiences gather based on an anticipated experience. Customer needs are transitory, but anticipated experiences can be repeated and create long-lasting memories.
If your organisation is full of buyer personas, customer profiles, and a myriad of product-led slicing and dicing of a potential customer base, you're missing out on something much more meaningful. Content marketing can take you on that journey to find that audience that truly connects with your brand values. Not because you think so, but because they think so.
Q2. If your company were to disappear tomorrow, what void would be left behind?
Would it be filled by competitors quickly? Would you even be missed? If the answers are yes and no, then you are on borrowed time. Sooner or later, some disruption in the market will put you on your last legs - whether that be financial, technological or social in nature.
We're constantly having to stay on guard for these, but wouldn't it better to have something that is immune to such disruptions? How to get to that is much harder, but the main point is most marketers are so busy, head-down on getting their next campaign out the door that they've forgotten why they're here in the first place.
There will always be noise, and more so in the future.
But core beliefs stay true.
Our raison d'etre always stays true.
Content marketing helps you find it and the people that will follow you anywhere for it. That, is the best return of all - ROE i.e. Return On Existence.
Thanks for reading! If you're looking for more insights, head on over to the blog. And if you're ready to go on your own content marketing journey, click here for a free 30 minute consultation with our experts.