Paul Delfino




< insights home

Better Call Paul

Delfino Marketing Communications, Inc.

Content Marketing: Knowledge is Power

by PD   |   Posted April 29, 2016   |   content marketing

There’s no doubt that in today’s marketing, content is king. And it’s king because strength in content reflects knowledge, and knowledge is power. In this post we will take a look at the elements of a sound content marketing program, including some practical guidelines to use in developing your program.

Let’s start with a definition of B2B content marketing, because the term can mean different things to different people:

Content marketing is the creation and delivery of information that people want (interesting, useful) rather than information that they shun (intrusive, arrogant or hard-sell). It demonstrates to potential customers that you are the right choice to solve their problems because of the knowledge and expertise that is inherent in you and your organization. Good content is worth reading, watching or listening to. It is entertaining and able to move the audience in some meaningful way.

In simple terms, think of it as delivering knowledge instead of selling products or services via features and benefits. The endgame can be stated as this: “by being an expert who delivers consistently valuable information to customers and prospects, they will ultimately reward us with their business.”

So let’s talk a little bit about how you should embrace content marketing as part of your overall integrated marketing program. First off, you need to approach content marketing from a team perspective, with individuals in charge of these key components: editorial content, design, delivery channels, audience development/management, budgeting, measurement and ROI.

The first thing the leaders of this team need to do is develop their content management strategy. Consider what you are trying to achieve with your program. It can be targeted to new users, core users, lapsed users, non users or adapted to touch them all. It can be focused on brand management, image and awareness, lead acquisition, lead qualifying, lead nurturing or lead conversion. And your content can be delivered to numerous contacts via both inbound and outbound marketing channels.

Most organizations – especially B2B companies rooted in science or technology – have a significant amount of content that is valuable to their audience. These can include PowerPoint decks, white papers, infographics, technical abstracts and studies, articles, case studies, consumer research, videos, podcasts and so on. These materials should form the basis of a content library (either in their existing form or if required, edited to meet confidentiality or proprietary limitations).

As you build your content marketing program, here are some Dos and Don’ts to keep in mind:

  • Talk about what you know. Don’t embrace a subject that you aren’t knowledgeable about just because it is important to your audience. At some point, you’ll need to back up your content with more knowledge or actions
  • Content marketing is not the same as social media. They work hand in hand, but they differ. Social media consists of channels to distribute your content and bring people to your website; they are not a hub to replace your website
  • Non-digital media has a place. Even print and events can be channels to deliver content, but keep web links that appear in print simple and easy to remember
  • Use both inbound and outbound marketing. That’s the only way to be sure you deliver content to both the people you know about and the ones you don’t
  • Tell the whole story. This can be tough, especially if your instinct is to use teasers in your communications and deliver the details in person. But the answers your contacts are looking for are probably available somewhere online – wouldn’t you rather they get them from you?
  • Don’t forget about SEO. Organic and paid search optimization need to be part of your inbound plans. Remember that your website and your keywords have to be in sync for SEO to succeed
  • Short-form content works too. You don’t always need to tell the story in long-form deliverables. Short and sweet has its place too, especially if it links to a page on your website with the full details
  • Never turn your content into an ad or press release. The knowledge gained by your content marketing should be about the industry, the market, the consumer, etc. rather than your product. People will see through sales-oriented content very quickly
  • Consider 3rd party content. It’s acceptable to enhance your program with content from outside sources; it provides a different perspective and supports your position as an “insider” with deep knowledge of the topic

It’s clear that knowledge is power. While the delivery methods will evolve with changes in communications technology, there is no doubt that content marketing and its ability to communicate knowledge is here to stay. If you’re intrigued and want to talk about a building a content marketing program targeted to your objectives, give us a call.

Happy marketing!