After writing about the content marketing ugly truths last week for the Oracle/Eloqua blog,It’s All About Revenue, I began to think about what are some of the other challenges that face marketers today. Much has changed in marketing since I began my career in the late 1990s.
As many folks know, your marketplace has become uber crowded with a lot of content. Many companies are producing tons of content. Some of that content is branded content from companies, other content is from enthusiast, and the rest is a hybrid of the two. Most of your clients are already conducting their own research. Fifty-seven percent of consumers are researching your products and services BEFORE contact you according to CEB. According to Google’s Zero Moment of Truth, the average person digests at least 10 pieces of online information before making a purchasing decision.
Other industries also grapple with the issue of relevancy in a crowded marketplace.
If you had not read the New York Times Innovation Report, definitely read it. The battle for your customer’s mind-share and inbox is not just a challenge B2B marketers, but also publications. P.S. If you don’t have the time or the energy to read the 97 page report, check out Scott Monty’s awesome recap.
While the challenge is to create marketing that can compete in a crowded marketplace, the real challenge is relevance.
It is not about only the creative idea, but also it is about how that idea is relevant to the market.
The relevancy is the biggest challenge in marketing for 2014.
I ponder this concept especially as I read the New York Times report. One of the striking quotes in the report was from the Editor-in-Chief of The Guardian, Janine Gibson, on audience “The hardest part for me has been the realization that you don’t get an audience.”
Some marketers forget this often. Don’t assume your content has an audience unless you have developed it with them in mind. Over the years, I have seen many organization create content without the end user in mind, but what they want to promote. These activities are also short term and yield poor results.
More importantly, the content you create to support your marketing should Solve for the Customer (S.F. T. C.) need or challenge. What your organization creates satisfies the clients’ needs not your ego.
You can’t create interesting marketing unless it is relevant to your market.
Clay Shirky, writer and TED Talk speaker summarizes why relevancy is key in your marketing, “You can’t fake interestingness.”
Rachel DiCaro Metscher is responsible helping her clients create content that adds value, maximizes results, and contributes to the conversation as the director of content marketing at ICF International. A champion of clear and concise communications, she has worked for The Princeton Review, Fannie Mae, and other B2B software companies to build successful marketing programs. You can hear about her musings on PR, social media, and content marketing on her blog, Metscher’s Musings.