"Improving content relevance and performance is a strategic imperative for BtoB marketing organizations," said Donovan Neale-May, Executive Director of the CMO Council. "BtoB buyers are looking for content that's original, consultative and highly pertinent to where they are in their decision-making process. Too many vendors are failing these buyers with overly promotional and overly technical content that doesn't adequately address market challenges and customer needs."
"Better Lead Yield in the Content Marketing Field" includes interviews with senior marketing executives who say that investments in content marketing and publishing are growing significantly as organizations deal with the need to target, reach and convert buyers and influencers with valued content across a growing multitude of channels, formats, rich media sources and devices. The report argues that marketing organizations need to do more to develop cohesive strategies, themes and branding across all of these efforts, as well as aggressively measure the performance of content and channels against critical marketing and business objectives.
"I think budgets for content development have to grow; it's become a much more complex process to manage," said Laura Breslaw, CMO for AlixPartners, a leading global business advisory firm. "It's a bigger investment of people. It's a bigger investment of research. It's potentially a bigger investment of strategic partnerships. But it's all part of building an integrated marketing program. You have to bake in all the different ways to reach your audience and build that into your plan before you go to market."
The CMO Council's Content ROI Center believes too few marketers have fully grasped the role and value of content in the process of sales lead acquisition, qualification, conversion and closure or its contribution to customer retention and revenue generation. Most have yet to map and model content requirements for specific buyer types across the marketing funnel. Channel analytics and content testing are needed to further the "precision acquisition" of qualified, actionable leads. Customer content requirements need to be anticipated and automated along the buyer's journey.
The report cites results of a rigorous content-driven customer nurturing program at DocuSign. Meagan Eisenberg, Vice President of Demand Generation, said the program has helped reduce customer churn by 65 percent and drive a 25-percent improvement in corporate sales. Eisenberg and Breslaw were among the marketers interviewed for the study from industry leading companies including AlixPartners, Deloitte, DocuSign, IBM, LexisNexis, and NEC.
Marketers who are seeking more meaningful engagement with customer audiences should also consider building stronger partnerships with organizations and content originators who understand and are trusted by targeted buyer groups, according to the report.
"Relevance and trust drive better content performance across the purchase funnel," Neale-May said. "Peer-powered organizations, including professional communities and industry groups, offer brands the opportunity to access powerful insights into customer audiences, as well as trusted channels for content engagement."
About the CMO Council
The Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council is dedicated to high-level knowledge exchange, thought leadership and personal relationship building among senior corporate marketing leaders and brand decision-makers across a wide range of global industries. The CMO Council's 6,500-plus members control more than $350 billion in aggregated annual marketing expenditures and run complex, distributed marketing and sales operations worldwide. In total, the CMO Council and its strategic interest communities include more than 20,000 global executives in more than 110 countries covering multiple industries, segments and markets. Regional chapters and advisory boards are active in the Americas, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, India and Africa. The council's strategic interest groups include the Coalition to Leverage and Optimize Sales Effectiveness (CLOSE), LoyaltyLeaders.org, Marketing Supply Chain Institute, Customer Experience Board, Market Sense-Ability Center, Digital Marketing Performance Institute, GeoBranding Center and the Forum to Advance the Mobile Experience (FAME). More information about the CMO Council is available at www.cmocouncil.org.
The Content ROI Center
The CMO Council's Content ROI Center is a strategic interest community dedicated improving the performance of content marketing within marketing organizations. The center is developing thought leadership and driving conversation across its membership on best practices, trends and challenges in content marketing. The center also works selectively with B2B companies that are making significant investments in content marketing to analyze and evaluate current practices and help elevate content ROI.
NetLine is the world leader in business content syndication aimed at driving buyer engagement, customer lead acquisition and sales pipeline performance. Its Precision Targeting Engine and global multi-channel network of more than 15,000 website properties enable BtoB marketers to reach a diverse audience of more than 75 million business professionals across 350-plus industry sectors. NetLine's multi-channel content delivery model allows for brand customization, content adaptation and flexible market access through publisher websites, expert blogs, email, search engines, social media networks, e-newsletters and mobile. Founded in 1994, NetLine Corporation is privately held and headquartered in Los Gatos, California, with operations across the globe. For more information, visit www.netline.com.
* Source: Custom Content Council and ContentWise
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