Content Marketing and the Sales Funnel

Content marketing seems to be all the rage at the moment. Content helps people and businesses to be found through search engines.  Blogs and social media are seen as great ways to put out content in order to be found and so people can start to know, like and trust you. Google rewards fresh content with higher scores encouraging businesses to generate even more content.  Businesses try to get high in the search rankings so they generate content specific to certain keywords. But then so do their competitors.

Content is King

There is also a prevalent saying that ‘Content is King’. The ability to create compelling content is very important, for that content to resonate with the reader, and to achieve it’s objective really matters. In this context it might be to inform, to entertain, to inspire, to persuade or similar goals. And content isn’t just about text, it could be pictures, audio, video, SMS, and other formats too. Multi-media content has become more practical, with the increase in electronic channels.

Distribution is Emporer

In an interview with international publisher Larry Genkin, written as a blog post here, he identified that without a means to get content into the hands of readers it was of very little value. As a publisher he clearly saw circulation of his publications as a vital bridge between content authors and readers. And in a marketing and sales context that translates into the various methods of getting content into the hands of readers, so social media, website and blog, email marketing, print, and so on. The ability to establish or to use communications channels to reach the desired readerships or viewers is clearly of great importance.

The process is the Power behind the throne

However, within the Marketing and Sales area we hold that content and distribution are means to an end, which is to achieve the goals of the process. In this respect it is about right message, right time, right channel, right person. And above all, in order to move the sale forwards there should be an effective call to action and a means for the reader to respond.

Content Grid v2

Combine these elements and the marketing and sales them have a very rich and varied palate from which to craft communications to feed into the sales process and to support people at the customer facing part of the sequence where personal contact builds trust, matches offerings against needs, negotiates deals and briefs delivery, or whatever the specifics for your industry or business.

Monitor and measure

With the increase in online communication comes the ability to monitor and measure how someone interacts with the message, or more specifically, whether they read it and whether the intended action as a result. The accuracy of this enables follow-up communications to be sent, to move the prospect to the next step.

How to approach content marketing

There are several options and routes available, so here are some ideas:

Increase content distribution

  • If what you have is fit from purpose or better then, other things being equal, it’s worth getting more eye-balls looking at it.
  • If there are brochures in the store-room they are not helping the sales process, so get them into circulation.
  • Likewise, a good or great website without many visitors warrants efforts to increase visitors.

Re-purpose content

  • Re-using what you have in a different format can produce quick wins.
  • If you have white-papers then use each paragraph or section as the topic for a blog post.
  • If you have case studies lift out customer quotes to use elsewhere.
  • If you have Powerpoint presentations then record an audio track and post them onto Slideshare as a SlideCast, which you could then incorporate in a page or post on your website or blog.
  • If your website has great content but is not converting then review and improve the high traffic pages.

Make content work harder

  • Improve conversion through various techniques

Create compelling content

  • Unlock the knowledge in the heads of you, your staff and team, customers and partners
  • Find a CREATIVE way to communicate complex concepts. The Infographic below is one example.
  • Thanks Shane Barker for the suggestion to include your Graphic in this post, below)

Contact Mark Stonham at Wurlwind

if you would like to talk through ideas to develop or leverage your content.

Comments are closed.