Buyer-focused messaging is the foundation of the creative process. It helps you figure out what story you should tell and why. But solid messaging will only get so far.
Marketers should not only be thinking about what to say; they should be thinking of how to say it, as well. Innovative marketers are doing just that, and I have the chance to speak with two of them during our upcoming Buyer Insights & Intelligence Series webinar.
Rather than spouting data and trends at a screen, I thought it would be a great opportunity to speak with a few of our clients and hear how they are bringing their buyer-focused messaging to the next level. During our discussion, Amanda Maksymiw of Fuze and Dave Bruno of Aptos will share real-life examples and some valuable insights about how they’re tackling new content preferences and internal misconceptions around these trends.
As I was coming up with questions for our conversation, I couldn’t help but think about some of the common misconceptions there are about content today. Not just misconceptions, but deep-rooted beliefs that inhibit brands from reaching their full creative potential. These are some of the myths we plan to debunk during our discussion:
1. “We don’t have the authority to speak on current events and issues.”
Yes, you do! People gravitate to brands that have a powerful story to tell. They want to connect and work with businesses that have beliefs and values that align with theirs. To some, it feels risky to speak up, but in reality, it’s risky to not. The key, however, is connecting with issues and causes that align with your brand heritage and communicating your message in an authentic way.
2. “We must always maintain a professional and educational tone in our content.”
Although this does vary a bit across industries and target audiences, we’re seeing an interesting shift overall in content tone and style. People want to feel like they’re being advised by a thoughtful (and friendly) expert. They don’t want to feel like they’re in school or spoken down to. We’re seeing brands overhaul their style guides and welcome a more casual and empathetic tone. Some even encourage humor in their prose. While there’s certainly a right time and right place, I try to push clients to test different writing styles in blogs and shorter, more tactical pieces that are ideal for a short and to-the-point approach.
3. “E-books and white papers perform best, so we should stick with those formats.”
I’m all about doing what works, but you’ll never know what resonates with your buyers unless you try. There are a lot of great platforms and formats that can help you tell even the most detailed stories in a more seamless and entertaining way. The best part is, you have the power to collect some valuable data about how visitors are consuming content, including how much time they spend in the experience and the links they click on. These insights will give you powerful fuel to guide your content decisions moving forward.
4. “We must spotlight our internal experts and our perspectives first.”
Your company’s subject-matter experts should play a critical role in the content development process. But you should expand your source list to include third-party experts, influencers and even advocates. A lot of buzz has surrounded traditional influencer marketing that leverages authors, speakers and analysts. But I believe a lot of the power is in spotlighting people who have overcome specific challenges and who belong to the same world as your audience. Their insights and best practices will resonate strongly and will be a tad more relatable than an expert you paid to talk about your business.
I’m so excited to chat with Amanda and Dave about this exciting new world of content marketing, and all of the struggles and successes they’ve seen throughout their journeys. I hope you’ll join us! All you have to do is click here to register and participate in the conversation!