In the latest report from Econsultancy they looked at the future of content marketing by talking to content experts, agency leaders and content practitioners. One of the biggest imperatives they noted is the importance of data as it relates to content. Whether you are using it to create content, distribute content, or analyze the success of your content, data plays a larger and larger role.
Our friend Doug Kessler of Velocity Partners notes: “More and more people are thinking of content as data. This is a great way to get granular data about firms from content and it generates real insight for companies. But if there’s no added value then people feel duped and it inhibits the technique’s growth. It needs proper analysis.”
There are certainly many ways to start breaking down this long report, but let’s start at the end with some actionable insights. Here are five takeaways from the report, and there are many more.
1. Understand data and your appetite for data
Customer insight is vital for successful content marketing but not all communications merit one-to-one personalization. Alternatively, diving so deep into data for content creation may be an unnecessary distraction for the company. Determine how targeted and contextual content has to be for it to be effective. Use small test cases to see where it’s possible to push those boundaries as needs don’t stay static over time.
2. Don’t just personalize, contextualize
Understand consumers’ reaction to communications. Brands may be able to identify likes and dislikes, preferred channels and real-time location. It still doesn’t necessarily mean they want to have a conversation with a cookie. Identify where your relevance is to their lives and where you’ll add value.
3. Automate but retain the human touch
Marketing technologies will allow a great deal of highly personal interaction at scale and in real time, even to the extent of being able to conduct human-like conversations. However, human interactions will continue to be vital, whether it’s monitoring important shifts in social listening, engaging in customer care or beyond.
4. Follow through
Customers are more than aware of the volumes of data collected on them. The content delivered has to match the data provided. Demanding detailed information and providing a generic response is an unsatisfactory experience.
5. Use existing resources
Just as the future of content will put it alongside advertising, PR and digital, use the resources that have been fueling these platforms to enhance your content output. Data management platforms (DMPs) have the potential to underpin so much more than programmatic display ads.
This is only a sample of the content goodness in this report about the Future of Content Marketing. Econsultancy shares many content examples, talks to lots of smart people, and wraps it up with good analysis. Download it today for a better tomorrow.