Andi who attended my Global Content Marketing Workshop at Content Marketing World sent me this question:
Pam, I am sitting here going through my notes from CMW highlighting what I need to take action on when I get back to the office and I have highlighted so much from your presentation! I do have one question - do you have a recommendation on how to transition from a traditional marketing program to a content program without it being jarring for the audience?
Ok, first of all, Andi, this is a, what I call, a holy-grail question. If I completely crack the nut, I’d say that I am the chosen one who knows the untouchable secret.
Here are my two suggestions on how you can approach this. One is to tackle it from the marketing end, the other approach is work from the sales side. So hear me out.
Tackle from marketing:
Andi, I don’t know what traditional programs are not working in your company. Assume, you do a lot of events, marketing managers gather many business cards and the event team passes them to the sale teams, but salespeople won’t follow up. Maybe content can be used as a means to nurture the prospects. If the prospects click on specific types of content such as a buying guide or a feature comparison list which may serve a clue that the prospect may be ready to move on to the next stage. Then, you can pass that lead to the sales team, because you qualified it.
Another example: maybe your company is still doing a lot of traditional paid ads, they don’t know how to do paid efforts on social media. Maybe you can do some research on where your target audiences go and propose social media outreach campaigns. Again, it’s a pilot. Make it 3-6 month program and have the specific performance metrics tied to the campaigns.
OK, another approach is to leave the existing traditional program as it is and tackle content marketing from the sales side:
Tackle from the sales side:
I tried this approach with my sales team before and I got the budget I needed to create some sales-centric content for them.
So, a quick summary of the two approaches, Andi:
One approach is to understand how existing traditional marketing program works and performs. Find the gaps and see how content marketing can fulfill the gap.
The other approach is to understand the sales team’s needs and see if you can provide content to address their needs.
I am sure that they are other ways to address your questions. If you provide additional information, maybe I can come up with additional ideas, OK?
In the meantime, I hope this helps. Good luck, Andi!
Again, send me your marketing questions or thoughts via Twitter @pamdidner