Whilst writing is challenging, content marketing requires more than just generating content. Creating pertinent content and engaging readers takes significant effort. Once good content exists, brands sometimes struggle to then make the content discoverable and to match it to the nuanced requirements of their target audience.
Gaining traffic for content (referred to as, demand generation or inbound marketing) is all about placing your content in line of sight of target audiences and then optimising conversion rates. Successful content marketing will achieve high readership, high return rates and good conversion, usually by research, key phrase planning and tailoring content to the particular needs of different customers.
One of our Animal Health clients created large amounts of high-quality content, designed for professional audiences such as breeders, producers and veterinarians. The content was originally placed in printed data sheets and loaded to a specialist website. Since it was written by subject matter experts, the content received a big tick for accuracy – both websites and print materials featured a wide breadth of coverage and a serious depth of study. But despite the rigour of the content creation process, perhaps the content as a whole could work harder; reach further and appeal more broadly.
The user-centric product selector app covers multiple stages in production, multiple pathogens and multiple user perspectives. The information needs (and recommended actions) of a veterinarian working in a production system, concerned about respiratory diseases) would likely be very different to the information needs of a producer concerned about the impact of a viral infection on herd gestation. To solve the challenge of serving hugely different content to different users, within a common environment, Wyoming designed a flexible data structure to hold the content and tag various items with key values aligned to the stages, pathogens and points of view of the particular user communities.
Wyoming worked hard to optimise the user experience, adding self-selecting questions that users would use to identify their stage in the real-world production process. With a slick UI sitting above the data, Wyoming were able to play out tailored journeys, retrieving just the right data for the needs of different users, at their particular point of pain in the chain. The UI managed consistency of design, navigation and signalling so that for each user, the app presented as a self-contained content app, just for them, addressing their particular needs and concerns with pertinent, tailored information.
A large content repository was repurposed to a user journey of a few clicks, reducing find time and frustration, and making recommendations (including product use recommendations) appear swiftly for target users. Presenting data in the correct order makes for satisfied users and removing the need to search, perhaps fruitlessly, for content, greatly speeds up the solution time for busy professionals. Filtering out less useful content and building a series of relevant content greatly improves engagement.
In addition to website use, the content tool was built into an iPad app and used at events to engage with visiting veterinarians and producers, leading to more meaningful engagements and allowing products to be introduced naturally into the conversation.
A side benefit to the brand – data. Content marketing works when data is available and tools such as the selector app, generate a huge amount of helpful data. What paths do users with different roles take through the app? Which steps do different users dwell on? Which content items do users return to? Brand teams can analyse this data store to answer questions such as: Are there different patterns of usage for different job roles or different territories? How does season affect content needs? Which areas of the app do users return to again and again? Are there any content paths that could be reworked to improve effectiveness? Are there any content gaps that should be addressed?
These help to plan content marketing but also feed into event marketing, sales development and general brand development, presenting increasingly relevant content to different users and lifting engagement.