I recently attended the Content Marketing World (CMWorld) conference in Cleveland, and it was an incredible experience. The energy of thousands of content marketers surging through the building, the invaluable advice from leaders in the field, and the enthusiasm for learning were all greater than I expected. I’m still processing all that I learned, but here are a few quick tips I picked up:
1. Good Content = Engagement
This sounds like an overly simply concept, but I think it is something marketers often forget. It’s easy to get distracted by new martech tools or to constantly be comparing your work to the latest viral content, but overthinking leads to distorted messages.
During her presentation on engaging storytelling, Amanda Lordy of NASCAR pointed out that the fact binge-watching exists proves people will stick around for good content. We always hear attention spans are decreasing (shorter than a goldfish!), but we can’t let that become an excuse to produce sub-par content.
Some helpful tips from Amanda Lordy:
- Copy should be able to stand alone without a photo or a video (and vice versa).
- Be prepared. Create content ahead of known events so you can quickly plug in details and publish in real-time.
- Make your content stand out; break through your own noise—don’t depend on the same layouts, templates, etc.
2. Marketers can better support their sales team.
Pam Didner’s presentation on sales enablement was a highlight of my CMWorld experience. She explained that marketing is the hidden sales force and sales is another marketing channel. Marketing and sales teams often butt heads or work separately, but it is essential they support each other.
The key is to identify sales’ pain points. From there, marketers can provide materials to alleviate these challenges and support their goals. Simply asking what content pieces a sales team typically uses when communicating with customers can solve many issues. (Do they prefer a pdf brochure, a demo video, a whitepaper?) A quick conversation can give us a better idea of how the sales team functions and allows us to avoid wasting time creating materials they will not use or understand.
Check out Didner’s blog post How to Start Supporting Sales As a Marketer for more tips.
3. Testing is key.
In his presentation about increasing conversion in email and landing pages, Chris Dayley of Smart CRO emphasized the importance of A/B testing. Why assume what will motivate an audience when you can make a data-driven decision instead?
To demonstrate the nuance of audience behavior, Dayley shared a client’s test in which their audience overwhelmingly preferred the call to action “Download Instantly” to “Instantly Download”. This would be impossible to guess, but the data doesn’t lie.
It was interesting to see Dayley’s test examples, but he noted the importance of testing our own audiences and testing them often. All audiences are different and members’ preferences will change over time.
Check out Dayley’s article about focusing on analysis of results for more info.
Did you attend the CMWorld or another conference lately? What were your biggest takeaways? Did anything you learned spark an idea for a new project? Babcox Media can help. We specialize in collaborating with marketers like you to reach your marketing goals. Let’s talk about your next project.
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