Marketing automation gives you the power to carry on individual, persuasive conversations with an unlimited number of prospects. Without enough content, though, you have nothing meaningful to say to them. Content is essential to success with marketing automation technology, yet it’s the part of the system that businesses are most likely to overlook.
Your automation software is a hungry beast. Fail to feed it enough fresh new content, and it can’t perform as well as it should. Here’s why you need to give your system a nutritious diet of well-balanced content and what you can do to make it happen.
Automation is brilliant at a lot of tasks, but software can’t yet out-write a human writer. Content comes from people – preferably people with a firm grasp of English and an engaging writing style. The best content writers are also accomplished ventriloquists, able to write content that seamlessly matches a brand’s style and creates a consistently recognizable voice across multiple campaigns and platforms. If you’re phenomenally lucky, you already have a stable of content creators who can do it, but chances are you’ll want help in this area. Your marketing automation consultant can connect you with content producers who are ready to craft anything from blog posts to white papers.
Content is the client-facing side of marketing automation, and your prospects aren’t aware of all the back-end data that informs and enhances the content they see. Your marketing automation system must become your centralized integration station, able to pull data from your CRM, sales histories, and accounting records. How does data drive content? With it, you’re able to create richer and more detailed buyer personas, which in turn lets you and your marketing automation consultant develop content that aligns with audience segments.
Different Journeys, One Destination
Buyers don’t take a single direct route from initial awareness to a buying decision. They meander. They stroll. Sometimes they even backtrack or disappear off the map entirely for a while, returning only when they’re ready for your offer. A content marketing strategy that’s light on content can’t meet your diverse clientele’s needs; for that, you need a broader, deeper information stream, one that splits into smaller tributaries to saturate different areas of your total marketplace. Nurture programs are designed for relevance to particular subsets and segments of your audience, carrying them along in the current to the same point via different flows.
Conventional content marketing looks at what goes out to leads, but it takes marketing automation technology to gain insight into what your prospects’ content consumption tells you about your market. Content opens a window on how your leads reach pivotal points in their decision-making process, giving you more information about future leads and the decisions they’re likely to make.
For example, if your analytics detect a consistent correlation between downloading a particular white paper and a buying decision, you and your marketing automation consultant can set up an alert to the sales team every time someone receives that content.
Don’t keep your marketing automation system starved for content. Feed it well so it can perform at the highest level.
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