Super Content Marketing is Sweden’s biggest content marketing conference. The full-day event attracted hundreds of visitors and some of the top industry speakers, including the Godfather of Content Marketing, Joe Pulizzi. So what are the obvious trends and biggest takeaways in the business right now?
Of course, it’s not possible to summarise all of the main points in one article. Even if you missed the pleasant atmosphere, the meetings and discussions, you can still get a glimpse of some of the key insights in this article. (And if you want to catch up, check out the conversations on the scmswe hashtag).
Here are some of what I believe are the most important takeaways from Super Content Marketing 2016.
Consistency was one of the words that the moderator Sabinije von Gaffke used to sum up the eventful day. You don’t know where or how your consumers will first interact with you, which is why it’s essential that your brand offers a consistent message throughout all channels and platforms. You need to adapt the content to the customer journey.
As Dr. Andrew Bredenkamp pointed out in his presentation:
“In the game of customer experience… consistency will always trump delight.” – Gartner
For your content to be effective, your actions must be consistent and meet the expectations of your audience. A potential mismatch can have severe long-term consequences for the brand.
If consumers are engaging with an average of 10 pieces of content before making a decision, how many of those touch points are you influencing? More important, do they speak the same language? If your content lacks consistency, your consumers will lose trust in your brand.
Think like a publisher, act like a content brand
The need to think like a publisher has never been more important. Your company needs an editorial mission, a clearly-defined audience, and a passion for the topic.
Robert Sperl, the Editorial Director of The Red Bulletin, reminds us of the importance to try and do things differently. Because the danger is not to aim too high and fail – the danger is to aim too low and succeed. Every publisher knows that good storytelling is about using simple words to talk about complicated things, in a way that is relevant and engaging for an audience. Few companies follow this advice.
Content brands excel at attracting an audience and staying relevant to them. They have an audience-first approach to business, which helps them develop products and services that suit their audience’s needs.
Content brands, such as Marriott and Jyske Bank TV, help consumers know, like and trust them through the material they produce. These efforts take time, however, but Joe Pulizzi argues that it is the most efficient way for companies to start a new venture or expand on their business. It’s part of the Content Inc. model.
Turn your business data to a marketing asset
Your business data can also be a valuable marketing asset. One of the best examples of using data to create cutting edge content comes from the Ericsson Mobility Report. Released twice a year, the report outlines future trends and projections, and as such, it has positioned Ericsson as a thought leader in the industry. It helped them go from newsworthy to trustworthy.
Today, the Ericsson Mobility Report plays a central role in the company’s marketing strategy. More important, the report provides employees and sales teams with a common reference point: the statistics, figures and stories guide both internal as well as external conversations with prospective clients. In short, it allows everyone to be on the same page.
Ask yourself: what is your audience telling you?
50 per cent of communication is listening, and it’s by far the most important part. Davina Rapaport of Maersk Line shared lessons from the shipping company’s social media journey. And it’s quite a journey, given that it’s one of the last analogue industries in the B2B space.
The first job for Davina and her team was to undertake a social media audit to understand their audience. What did they want to know about? What were their expectations? From this initial analysis, a social media strategy was born.
LinkedIn became a powerful platform to reinforce Maersk Line’s brand proposition and a place to discuss industry issues. Facebook became the primary channel where the company could engage their fans, employees, and seafarers. Twitter served as a primary source for customer insights and was also media’s preferred communications channel. YouTube, Instagram, WeChat, Weibo, and MaerskLine.com were all important supplementary channels.
Social Media ROI
But like most companies, the eternal marketing question eventually popped up:
Ultimately, the role of social media in a marketing context is to cast a wide net and entice as many people as possible to click through to a website where you can make money off them. Naturally, eye-catching, engaging and relevant content is crucial if you wish to achieve this business goal.
Once viewers have clicked through to a landing page, make sure to measure the time they spend on the page and whether or not they take any type of action (such as signing up to your newsletter, watching a video, or getting in touch with a sales representative).
Stay consistent, build a coherent brand experience, and turn company insights into pieces of content that can serve both you and your clients.
Content brands are the future of content marketing because they manage to stand out from the noise, and build a direct connection to the audience. You won’t always get it right the first time, but that’s okay. Keep at it, keep listening and keep adjusting to your audience. If you listen closely, they will tell you what’s working and what’s not.