Sometimes a different approach to delivering content pays off in customer loyalty … and profits!

The value is clear, if we can begin gathering more data from our audiences, we can become a more competent company and enable much better business decisions across the sales and marketing spectrum. – “Killing Marketing,” Pulizzi and Rose

Finding new ways to engage audiences and build customer relationships has been a marketing drumbeat during the past decade. Many marketers are marching to that beat by pinning their usual content to the client buying cycle or journey.

But here’s the catch: What if you don’t really know where potential clients are in that journey?

You could turn that around and ask yourself, “What do clients want?” Instead of creating content driven by the features your product experts want to promote, take a step back and consider the needs of the audience you want to attract.

In other words, deliver something that’s so compelling and informative that your target audience keeps coming back for more!

This is truly possible and has happened in interesting ways for some top-notch companies. You’ll find examples in “Killing Marketing,” a thought-provoking book published by Joe Pulizzi and Robert Rose in 2018. The authors told the stories of several companies that had devised innovative marketing approaches to attract their target audiences – wherever they were in the buying cycle – and made them into loyal, paying customers.

Opening the door with high-value content

When I worked for Schneider Electric, our company was one of the featured stories. Our novel idea was to turn the embedded knowledge of our engineers and product developers into product-neutral, information sessions, available free in an online learning environment.

By using an e-learning platform, we were able to better understand our audience based on the data we collected. When users register for e-learning, they share a certain amount of info about themselves to gain access to the courses. And this is where the program differs from other marketing efforts: Because it’s a learning system, there’s a trust factor – they’re providing data about themselves in exchange for an educational experience.

Giving away valuable content? A crazy idea, but one that redeemed itself in customer loyalty, brand awareness, and, eventually, tying the marketing program to revenue. Inadvertently, we had become a profit center. All this from a program championed by the CMO and managed within the marketing organization!

The value is clear, if we can begin gathering more data from our audiences, we can become a more competent company and enable much better business decisions across the sales and marketing spectrum. – “Killing Marketing,” Pulizzi and Rose     

The ability to hand off a hot opportunity to sales is valuable beyond words. And if it’s a marketing program tied to the acquisition of new business, then the value grows exponentially.

Surprise and delight potential clients

But it all starts by electing to deliver something remarkable and different that gets the customer to your door. And the value that derives from this is that you transcend the product pitch, that “same old story,” and can now deliver intelligence and insights that are more about your customers. It’s a way of choosing to do better by your customers, and eventually, do better for your company. 

So, take a chance, step back and find some new way to share what you already have, but in a way that no one expected to find it. You’ll maximize your content and potentially increase your profit!  

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