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Three words lie at the heart of what’s broken in content marketing. Those same words hold the key to fixing marketing: connection, creativity and results.
Today’s content marketers often feel pressured to sacrifice the first two — connection and creativity — to have any hope of demonstrating the third: measurable business results. Pushed by impossible demands to constantly create new content, marketers think they lack time to be creative and still reach business goals. Unfortunately, marketers often feel they must separate creativity from creating, which all too often results in high volumes of content that simply adds to the noise and fails to truly connect with audiences.
Related: 9 Tips for Reigniting Your Marketing Team’s Creativity
Too many marketers have succumbed to the lie that when it comes to content, quantity is king, and only algorithms truly matter. They’re doubling down on SEO and jonesing for higher SERP rankings, and it comes at the cost of rich, relevant, creative work. And the results of those efforts show:
An overlooked audience, confused and uninspired by one-size-fits-none content.
Daring ideas abandoned mid-development in favor of a finished product, regardless of its quality.
Diminished engagement and leads, because the audience has given up and moved on.
In a perfect world, connection with audiences, creativity from marketing teams and results from efforts should all work together. So, how can companies prioritize connection, make space for creativity and still show the revenue outcome of their efforts? By adopting an amplified marketing approach, creating audience-focused, high-quality content and atomizing, remixing and refreshing it into multiple pieces of content across every marketing channel.
What marketers want
Casted talked to marketers in its “State of the Content Marketer” report. Respondents said they need a better way to connect their creative marketing efforts to business goals. They want to:
Better understand audience needs, wants and preferences.
Deploy high-quality content more often and across multiple platforms.
Gain better visibility into the revenue impact of their work.
Measure the performance of multiple multichannel campaigns simultaneously.
The answer? An amplified marketing approach. The strategy lets marketers follow their creative ideas and rise to big, audacious expectations to compete with the Marvels and Pixars of the world. How? By releasing themselves from the chains of quantity, marketers can pursue authentic, engaging and profitable content, then wring it out across multiple channels. By amplifying the reach, they amplify the value and amplify the results.
Related: Stop Talking In Cliches: 4 Tips for More Creative, Original Marketing
Identify audiences, experts and assets
Amplified marketing starts with understanding the audience. Who is your audience? Who is engaging? What interests them most? Determine high-performing keywords and topics for more insight.
Then, rather than researching to write “like” an expert, talk to an actual expert instead. Find the people most qualified to address your audience’s questions and inspire them. You might find an internal expert with storytelling flair and energy, a customer who can speak about your niche or an industry expert to provide strategic insights.
After identifying your audience’s characteristics and potential experts, dig into your archive for treasures. Use past segments — a podcast or video clip, a blog pull quote that gained momentum on social media, anything that fired people up or elicited an enthusiastic response — and build it into your new work.
Create audio, video and text
Once you’ve identified an appealing topic and secured an expert, have a conversation. Record it with Zoom, a smartphone or whatever gear you’ve got.
Remember, this conversation isn’t merely a chat: It’s a source for all of your subsequent content creation. Divide the talk into a series of webinars or podcast episodes. Use resonant quotes or tantalizing questions as video and audio clips embedded in social media and email marketing campaigns. Slice and dice the transcript into a set of blog posts. And don’t stop there. Reference older pieces of content related to the conversation, mixing old with new to create more value and increase audience touchpoints.
Related: 3 All-Too-Familiar Writing Patterns You Need to Eliminate From Your Marketing Copy Today
Amplify across channels, formats and teams
When you amplify your content’s reach, you amplify your revenue. The easiest way to boost your content’s effectiveness? Make it available in a variety of formats and platforms. To maximize amplified marketing:
Align your content and teams, so everyone knows what’s available and performing well.
Take and share the atomized content with your marketing teams.
Identify your audience’s preferred channels, and align the best corresponding content formats with those channels.
Tailor those content nuggets to perform better on each channel, based on past success.
Return on creativity
The alchemy of creativity and connection drives real business impact. I call it a return on creativity. Rather than seeing bold, creative content as time-consuming and single-use, envision it as foundational and generative. Invest time, money, effort and creativity into developing a lower quantity of higher-quality content. Then repurpose, restructure and reuse your wellspring of content to maximize the return on your investment and all your creative effort.
To see the ROI of amplified marketing in action, you must measure your content’s omnichannel effectiveness. Look beyond vanity metrics like downloads. Focus on engagement, and use technology that generates detailed insights to help you pivot in real-time. And don’t bury those numbers in the marketing department. Share what’s working with sales and customer success teams, so they can act on your knowledge! Every shift and adjustment to your content increases its relevance, engagement and value to prospective customers — and benefits your bottom line.
For too long, marketers have been pressured to accept the frustrations and limitations of a disjointed existence. They’re publishing content deemed “good enough to go live.” They’re chasing the approval of algorithms at the expense of their audience. And they’re still struggling to prove the worth of their work. Amplified marketing invites marketers to reconnect — with their audience, creativity and business objectives — through better content, not more content.