In Creating An Effective Content Marketing Framework findability expert Erin Robbins Acheson, the President & COO at DemandSphere and I discussed the keys to building a solid content marketing for demand generation program. Now we continue the discussion on implementing a successful program.
Where to Start and Getting Buyin for Your Content Marketing
It depends on where you are. If you’re an individual contributor at a midsized organization, and not necessarily at the management or executive level, then start by having a conversation with the big bosses. Explain why this is important, the benefits, and how implementation is NOT going to be a burden on them. Rather it’s going to make their lives easier and make them look like rockstars.
If you want to successfully sell this idea to management you must emphasize what you are specifically asking in terms of their time and mind share. “I can tell you that one of the things that’s really hard for me as I’ve moved along in my career is having these great ideas,” said Erin. “I want to implement these programs immediately but I run into roadblocks. As you grow and become the manager you have a lot on your plate.
Most senior digital marketing managers I know are responsible for some tactics and execution in addition to general management and oversight of an entire department. When somebody wants to come in and try this new thing out, a lot of times it just means adding something else on to their plate. If they are left with that impression it will kill your project before it leaves the starting gate.
Starting off with bite-size chunks is really important. Usually it’s a bad idea going and talking to other departments before you have first spoken with your own people. If you already have regular meetings and conversations with other staff, or if there’s a way to get base level insight from other people to start evaluating tactics, insights and information, then gather that together.
Create One or Two Page Action Plan
This allows you to create a recommendation briefing sheet, or a small report with some recommendations, that fundamentally says, “Hey, here are three things I learned from talking with colleagues. Here are the current outcomes. Here’s a suggestion I have for something that we could do differently, and how that will benefit us. And I’ve taken a first stab at it and here are the initial results.”
If you are able to accomplish some version of this, then you’ve actually taken it 80% of the way by yourself. This means your manager is not stuck with 100% of figuring out how to handle this new thing you want to do.
If you are in management or executive stuff, suggest to give this process a try. As a midsized company you have greater agility to test smart projects out. It’s great for the team because it systemizes a lot of process that currently exists. It actually takes a lot of the pressure off of you having to be hands-on and manage day-to-day granular tasks. People like to have a very specific set of activities mapped out. And it allows you and your team to be more strategic, because it streamlines the little tactically stuff, and moves it away from being constantly top of mind because it’s now a process.
Choosing The Right Metrics To Measure Success
How do you know that your content marketing framework is working well? Not surprisingly it’s all about increased revenue or achieving the company’s business goals. You should see your arrows going up and to the right when your metrics improve. Setting those metrics appropriately at the beginning is how you know you’re on track. This is why you need to choose metrics beyond vanity metrics like more tweets, more followers, or more email opens. Those are unlikely to actually end up leading to conversions and revenue that you can really take and say, “Look at what we’ve done.”
That’s why setting it up at the very beginning with those KPIs is so important. And because it’s always different for every organization, that’s why there’s not a standard one size fits all. A good place to start is “What Content Marketing Metrics Actually Matter?”