The Next Challenge For Content Marketers: Combating The 'Attention Deficit'

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By Ardath Albee, CEO, Marketing Interactions, Inc.

A recent DemandBase survey found that 50% of B2B marketers have only a basic understanding of their target audiences. Another 10% have no understanding, and 8% believe they can sell to anybody. That’s pretty frightening given how difficult it is to just to catch the attention of buyers today. In fact, with an average short-term attention span of eight seconds, it’s a recipe for invisibility.

Looking ahead to 2013, B2B marketers need to focus on three things to beat the attention deficit:

Better buyer knowledge: Whether you call it personas, profiles or insights, marketers must learn enough about their buyers to stay relevant and deliver a message people want to hear. This takes research, planning and interviews.

Subject-matter expertise: Build on these buyer insights by making yourself a subject-matter expert. Even if you don’t actually write the content, you need to know enough to create content strategies and provide editorial direction.This is not optional.

Progression orchestration: Learn how to construct an integrated, multi-channel content flow that helps your buyers learn what they need to know at each stage of the buying process. Without this ability, you’re simply creating content with no job to do.

As we spend more on content, social media and SEO, we also need to invest in the skills – and the relevant content – to execute effectively. Otherwise, this is just empty effort.

Ardath Albee is a B2B Marketing Strategist and the CEO of her firm, Marketing Interactions, Inc. She applies over 25 years of business management and marketing experience to help companies with complex sales use eMarketing strategies to generate more and better sales opportunities.

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