Thursday, April 28th, 2016 | 4 min read
It’s 8:42 am. So far today, I have consumed five news articles, three blog posts, and scanned Facebook for updates from my friends and family. Despite my reasonable effort to learn (and stay connected to my community) I see there are 3,701,241 blog posts that claim to be relevant. And millions of articles, tweets, and videos vying for my attention. When I wake tomorrow, today’s content will be replaced by even fresher content. And I will continue to consume a fraction of it all – one millionth of one percent, to be exact. Every day thereafter will follow the same pattern: infinite content, finite time, singular me.
As a consumer, I’m overwhelmed. As a marketer, I’m concerned.
has it all wrong. No wonder it’s noisy out there.
There was $145 billion spent on content marketing last year. For context, that’s more than what we spent on cancer medications, and 17x what the EPA will spend to protect the environment this year. The investment, to an extent, makes a lot of sense. Good content – smart, relevant, helpful information – is where people turn to make sense of the world. Good content can do great things.
Unfortunately, much of the branded content out there misses the mark on relevance and value. It’s just noise.
Readers like me want information that can help make their lives better in some way. They want information that will help them learn something new or sharpen their own point-of-view. Here are three principles I use to create the kind of information we at Sprinklr choose to share.
You want to know what matters to your customers? Listen. Listen to what they’re saying. They continually signal what’s important to them if you’re committed to listening. One brand that does this well is Scholastic, which uses social listening software when planning large social and content activations. Scholastic’s social team routes insights gleaned from social listening to relevant business units – ensuring the voice of the customer is not only heard across the organization but reflected in the kind of information Scholastic creates for its customers.
You need a foundation that will scale. Big brands need an infrastructure that’s built for insights, action and reporting all governed by rules that cut across the entire customer-facing front office. A proper infrastructure will help streamline processes, while ensuring that everyone is speaking in the same brand voice at the same time.
LogMeIn made this change recently following rapid growth last year. To strategically scale their social team it became crucial to understand the volume of content coming in and out of all of its digital channels. By implementing an integrated social media management platform, LogMeIn is able to fully consolidate all of their social engagement across dozens of social profiles and blog accounts while providing continual insights on what matters most to their customers.
There’s a wealth of consumer data out there. Unlike CRM data, most of the rich data is unstructured data that gives companies very real insights into what customers actually care about. Successful brands are learning to take advantage of these opportunities. TaylorMade, for example, integrates social data into every step of its content production workflow. When there is heightened buzz around events, such as The Masters, TaylorMade-Adidas Golf Company tracks these conversations and uses the data insights to create relevant content in real time. They can see which players engage the audience, how they do so, how the audience feels, then create brand assets to support these conversations.
Practicing these three principles can lead to improved internal collaboration, greater efficiencies, and – most important to your customers who are overwhelmed with irrelevant content – better experiences with your brand. The more valuable the information you share, the less noise there will be in your customer’s world.