5 Experiments to Improve Your Content Marketing
“The true method of knowledge is an experiment.” — William Blake
By now, I am sure your organization has published a couple of multimedia content items here, a few blog posts there but maybe, those efforts couldn’t really move the needle. Even though you were convinced that content marketing is working for many when it is done right, you have naturally given up as it simply didn’t drive revenue for you. Well, finding the sweet spot between art and science is the key, but to get to that point takes developing a culture of frequent experimentation.
Conversely, your organization may seem to find the right path to execute a great content marketing plan. However, in the ever-evolving digital industry, do not expect that your tactics will work out forever. I mean, even the best idea can be improved upon and that the digital era makes your process easier than ever before.
Although there is no one-size-fits-all approach to content marketing, we can discuss some proven experimentation-focused best practices to find out what you can play with in 2017 to boost your content marketing strategy:
Spring Cleaning for Your Content
As your website ramps up curation of content, some old pages can become obsolete over time. Therefore, spending some time honing your old content can result in garnering a better traffic than your new content potentially could drive. To do so, here are some questions that may help you decide what to do with your old content when revisiting those pages:
- Why did these particular pieces perform better than others?
- What type of content garnered remarkable attention?
- Which subjects are your audience most interested in?
- What’s the behavior flow? Do they drop-off after the landing page or keep interacting with other content?
It is also beneficial to take a hard look at what performed well and what didn’t so you can project the information into the future and get down to planning.
According to Cisco, nearly a million minutes of video content will cross the network every second by 2019. Although it sounds like cut-throat competition, neither quantity nor quality of your video content is the main competitive edge here. If you wonder what makes video content compelling, look no further than the authenticity it provides. When you really think about it, even large companies with a tremendous ad budget do not hire rock stars or use highly polished videos for advertising anymore. The only thing you should never compromise on though is the narrative quality of a story in your video, as that’s the whole reason of why video content has been so successful.
Another positive outcome brands can gain from video content is becoming a thought leader, by talking about different aspects of their own industries. Even though it may require a great deal of time providing valuable and tailored information, it is definitely worth making an effort. After all, it’s projected to represent 79 percent of global web traffic by 2020.
With regards to high-impact storytelling, there is often conflict between metrics-minded ROI and unrestrained creative urge. Whether you are a business owner or an employee, at the end of the day, we all are tasked to drive revenue. Therefore, while you are trying to compellingly tell the story of your company, do not fail to find the sweet spot between creativity and trade.
Now that you have done your spring cleaning of your content, why not upgrade the ones that have garnered a great viewership from your targeted audience. After all, the interest has already been proven, all you need to do is execute more in-depth content to satiate the obvious interest.
Besides providing fruitful information to your audience, another quick win you can gain from content upgrades are the collection of new data. When you breathe new life into your old content, you can always make your audience download your free content upgrade in return of their contact details. As a result, you will have a specific lead pool to nurture your sales or targeted audience for driving more traffic to your website.
If you don’t want to throw a bunch of content against a wall and wait to see what sticks, you need to know your audience. Today, marketers are able to collect zillions of bits of data and have the technology to translate them into actionable recommendations. In the era of clutter with non-relevant and out-of-context information, content that is served to a targeted audience stands out, and this is where micro-targeting comes into play.
With the advanced technology we have today, it is easy to tell which demographics make up your core customers. From there, you can deliberatively set your voice and tone to send your message to the right audience. If you need to target smaller sub-locations as you have a local business, geotargeting may help you draw attention from a specific location. Aside from demographic and geotargeting, you need to reach out to a broader audience who has a specific common interest. You can curate your message based on people’s interests which also help you build a deeper relationship on an emotional level.
Rule of Seven
The rule of seven is nothing new but if you haven’t tried it yet and are looking for new ways of doing things differently for your content marketing in 2017, this is something you should look into. The number seven might be your lucky number as it is the world's favorite number, but this rule is not just about luck. The idea behind this marketing tactic is that if you educate your prospects by putting the continuous and repetitive effort in your content marketing strategy, you can gain your prospect’s trust. Otherwise, just because you run a couple of advertisements or post a few blog posts, they will not be convinced to make a business with you.
There a lot more than these five experimentation-focused tactics that your organizations can experiment. If you wait until your marketing campaign is perfect for running, you will unfortunately never find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Also do not limit yourself to experiment only your content, experiment channels, platforms, and some other technologies, too. In the first place, testing and experimenting can slow you down whereas you are supposed to be as nimble as you could be but once you develop a culture of frequent experimentation, it will pick up speed and more importantly, the results will give you a better idea to determine the direction of your content marketing plan.