Tag Archives: content marketing

How Technology Is Disrupting Content Marketing?

The modern marketing industry is no longer the same. Not even what it was four or five years ago. At the center of this revolutionary and dynamic change is the heady rise of technology in the way marketing is done today. This blogpost is focused on how technology has been disrupting Content Marketing over last few years.

Content First, Channels Second

From the good old days of channel oriented approach to marketing, to the current era of real-time content marketing, the industry stands disrupted by technology in many ways than we can imagine. Now, you don’t just create a TV or Print ad, you create content that has the potential to be taken forward across all media, right from a billboard to the brand’s Facebook page, and beyond.

Brand in Focus: Apple (who else?). Despite not being present on social media in India, Apple’s ‘Shot on iPhone’ campaign created a great impact driving home the message they wanted to convey – their camera is really, really powerful. How did they do that? Well, thanks to their integrated approach. Apple created attractive content first and then distributed it to all the possible mediums wherever they exist. You could see user-generate pictures and branded advertisements almost everywhere, from metro pillars to airport lounges to city malls to Television. One unified message to rule it all!

Lesson: Create compelling content, then cross-promote it effectively.

Content First

One Consumer. Multiple Screens

Smartphone. Laptop. Tablet. Television. E-book reader. And what not! Technology has made it possible for content marketers to target consumers with relevant content on multiple screens. You can create a seamless message that can be reinforced in the minds of the consumers multiple times.

Lesson: Have a uniform presence everywhere. Make sure you have a mobile-friendly website, proper business listing review, your site is indexed on search engines, SEO is in place and you’re active on social media for your always-on consumer!

Brand in Focus: General Electric, Coca Cola, McDonald’s, et al. Some of the world’s most popular brands are making sure their presence looks uniform and communication, completely lucid. Everywhere.

multi-screens

Customer-Centricity

The incredible power of technology has empowered the modern-day consumers. They are not just passive receivers of information but are actively looking for reviews, information and feedback on a brand’s products or services, both offline and online. They may visit a brand’s retail store and can appreciate or complain about the customer service right from their Twitter handle. They may fill an inquiry form on the brand’s website and then meet a salesperson for a complete demo of the product they want to purchase.

Lesson: Your customer is everywhere. Listen to them and you’ll be rewarded!

Trend-vertising is In

Real-time content consumption has been possible with the rise of technology. And this gives content marketers a huge opportunity to engage with the fans. Remember the Orea blackout Tweet, which broke almost all Twitter records? When the unfortunate blackout occurred in the middle of the Super Bowl XLVII, Oreo ju

Technology + Creativity = The Future of Content Marketing

In this digital disruption age, when technology continues to change consumer behaviors, innovation in the field of data analytics, software development, and advertising platforms is helping content marketers to create more personalized communication with the consumers and engage with them effectively.

Future of Content Marketing

Programmatic Buying, for example, has helped brands engage with fans across multiple screens, and with rich formats! The ‘Nike Phenomenal Shot’ campaign, which took real-time advertising to the next level, is a classic example of how technology can be used by a brand to wow the fans. Within moments of a memorable shot, Nike was able to deliver immersive 3D displays to fans in various countries, on multiple apps and sites, which they could recreate and share on their social networks! This mobile-driven campaign with over 2 million engagements was a resounding success.

mped in the dialogue and created history by a cleverly designed tweet. All of this, with zero media dollars!

Lesson: When they are watching TV, they’re tweeting as well and ordering food from an app! Be ready to ride the trend and involve your consumers in a conversation. They love to talk!

Well, that’s not all of it!

With the rise of futuristic technologies like the Oculus Rift, Augmented Reality (Pokemon Go game is here, folks), Drones, Wearable Tech and Artificial Intelligence, technology will get more integrated in the lives of consumers. Technology, to say the least, helps in doing purpose-driven content marketing, and that’s its contribution to the marketing industry.

Content Marketing Strategy by The Economist around New Year!

It’s that time of the year when we all would like to look back. We all would wait for TV channels to air top 10 world news, top 10 sports news etc. Here is an example of how a publishing brand has provided an interactive experience of looking back on their website with the help of interesting content marketing strategy. It’s none other than The Economist. Beginning 1st December, they share one important news per day that was published earlier in the year. Some digital marketers may tag it as a ‘repeat visit tactic’, some may call it as a ‘content marketing initiative’, overall the thought and execution both deserves an applause.

Thought: Shortlist best content rich informative articles (that consist of maps, charts, data visualizations and interactive features) published throughout the year, share it with target audience and bring them back to the website, which is an excellent content marketing strategy.

Execution: Unlike a blogpost with a list of top news items, an element of interactiveness has been very well leveraged. A layer of suspense and hence curiosity has been infused into the effort, which is very good from engagement perspective. A specific page has been created and titled as The 2015 Daily Chart Advent Calendar, which hosts a calendar.

Content Marketing Strategy

Each date’s window is locked and will reveal the content only on that day. So as of 5th December, only five windows (From 1st -5th Dec) have been enabled. When you click on other days, it shows the locked sign.

The Economist promises a new graphic that’s hidden behind the Number 25 window, which will be revealed only on the eve of the Christmas.

The Economist has been doing this exercise year-on-year and you can check their earlier year’s calendars too.

The Economist previous calendars

The major learning from this content marketing strategy campaign are:

  1. No fresh content required for the Christmas campaign
  2. Great thought to re-use existing content
  3. Intelligent way to bring back traffic to the website
  4. Surprise element ensures visitors will revisit website regularly for these 25 days
  5. From engagement perspective it’s a great strategy

This article was originally posted on Digital Defynd.

An eventful day at Paul Writer IT Marketing Summit & Awards

Conference, summit, unconference, meetup, any such event has primarily two objectives – networking amongst like minded people and few domain knowledge that one could learn from peers. Recently, I had this opportunity to attend Paul Writer Great Indian IT Marketing Summit & Awards. The summit attracted participation from top IT product and service oriented companies like Microsoft, Dell, Cisco, Cognizant, IM, Tech Mahindra, SAP, VMware, HCL Technologies, LinkedIn, Wipro, CSS Corp and Tally Solutions etc. The event had some interesting panel discussions focused various aspects of Internet Marketing. I have briefed below the learning I had from each of the session:

From You to Me to Us

  • The major attraction of this session was the quote by Nupur Sharma, “Your customer is not a dog anymore, but a cat!” The point to be noted here was that customers these days have very unique needs and they have resources to search and find the best offering that addresses their needs. Hence, the digital marketing needed to be customized to address individual needs
  • Another famous quote of the session was by Apurva Chamaria, “B2B is no more true, its more of i2i (individual to individual) marketing. Companies don’t business with companies”. He emphasized that in B2B context it was very essentials for every individual in the organization to leverage digital media effectively to find, build relationship and interact with their customers
  • In earlier days B2B marketing was considered to be logic driven, while B2C marketing was an emotional one, but in this information economy, the lines are blurring
  • Innovation in content marketing was the need of the hour and brands need to focus on generating small bits of content that are easy for users to consume and interpret given the reducing attention span for a particular media channel
  • Employee Advocacy is emerging as a crucial program within IT Marketing for brands to build a strong employer brand

Social Selling is Here

This session started with an interesting debate between Ashok Lalla and Jatin Modi. This was one of the most interesting sessions of the day for entire audience. Some of the key takeaways from the session were:

  • Building brand’s awareness, credibility and viability is a basic necessity of Social Selling
  • Social connectedness between people is there to stay, hence its more about how we leverage this ‘connectedness’ irrespective of the platform where brand creates its presence
  • In B2B context its more about internal expertise (who create/share content) & the expertise who amplify it. As the original content creation is a challenging activity and only very few manage to do, it becomes very essential for brands to have experts within organizations who could amplify the content and driving conversations at larger scale
  • The content shared by brand should leave some scope for people to add value to it and hence motivate people to engage with the brand
  • Social Selling is not tactical, it definitely is slow but strengthening relationships will have long term impact

Keynote speech by Ashutosh Gupta, Director Marketing Solutions, LinkedIn

Ashutosh highlighted how LinkedIn was fast emerging as a content consuming platform for passive candidates (who are not in search of jobs) and how marketers could leverage this platform. Some of the key insights he provided during the keynote address were:

  • 10 pieces of content are consumed by the decision-makers before arriving at a decision
  • LinkedIn users are 7 times more engaged with content vs. jobs’
  • If you ‘gate’ insightful content like whitepaper, infographics, video, you would lose the interest of top-funnel
  • Map your content to the right segment of the funnel to influence at best
  • Impact every stage of buyer process journey with relevant content

Friends with Benefits: Making Partnerships Work

This panel discussion was focused on how it has become a key strategy for organizations to build strong relationships with their partners for sustained growth. Frankly, I had no interest in this session, but some of the learning that came across in this session could be applied even in our lives:

  • Building trust between partners was of key importance even before agreeing upon the ROI metrics
  • Partnerships need to be nurtured well for long term growth of both organizations

Golden Cs: Content to Conversations to Conversions – Nurturing the Pipeline

Ever since digital marketing came to existence the relevance of content has been highlighted umpteen times. However, off late when brands have started leveraging content, the discussion and expectation of CMOs and CEOs has shifted towards the conversations that are driven through these content and the conversions (ROI) derived from various content marketing efforts. This panel touched upon various aspects of this phenomenon:

  • Focus should be to produce the content that drives deep conversations
  • Increasingly it is becoming difficult for marketers to defend the cost involved in producing content. Hence, its high time that marketers plan to map ROI for every piece of content that is produced
  • Especially in B2B context, given the long decision making process and multiple stakeholders, marketers need to produce small bits of content at regular intervals of time to ensure top of the mind recall.

The final session of the day was a chat between Jessie Paul and Ashok Soota, CEO of Happiest Minds. He shared his experience and some tips for youngsters to handle the professional pressure and excel in career.

Then came the much awaited moment of the day – Awards announcement. Guess what, HCL Technologies won two categories  – a) No Money Marketing (Unified Messaging of RBTC) and b) Best Lead Generation (Hiral Videos campaign). The Best Digital Agency of the Year award was won by Frogideas for #CoolestInterviewEver campaign.

Paul Writer

 

It was a great full day of knowledge seeking, networking (with tweeps like Ashok Lalla, Tinu Cherian, Malhar Barai, Pradeep Chopra) and the icing on cake was the moment when I stepped on stage to collect the award for Hiral videos campaign which was executed by my team.

Content Marketing Strategy by Google India

The importance of Content Marketing has been done to death. But, fact of the matter is very few brands do it efficiently. In this blogpost, I am sharing the content marketing strategy that Google India has adopted in the past one year. Most of us have watched and admired the Google’s India-Pakistan reunion advertisement. I think many of us have lately also viewed two more videos highlighted in this blogpost. As a marketer / digital marketer / student have you tried to think through the reasons why Google invested behind these videos? Here are few questions to ponder upon – Why was Google focusing on India and creating videos on Indian centric themes? Are these videos going to impact the topline or the bottomline of Google? Will these videos help Google in strengthening its position in Indian markets? Are these videos centered just around Google’s products and services or something more? I hope once you read this blogpost, answers to most of these questions will be self-explanatory.

Now, let’s analyze three videos of Google:

Video 1: India – Pakistan reunion

As and when this blogpost was being written this video had already earned 12.4 million views since it was launched on 13th Nov’13.

I consider this video to be 50% focused on Google’s services (various features) while 50% focused on building emotional connect between the two countries that remain in state of tension for most of the time. The video very well captures various features like Google Search, Google Maps, Google Weather etc. that users can leverage. Most importantly video clearly establishes that these features are also available on mobile devices and its very user-friendly for users to find these information. There have been many reports that highlight that next wave of Internet penetration in India would come from Tier-2, 3 cities and we already have seen reports highlighting the fact that even e-commerce sales are increasing in these cities.

Video 2: Android One – Apni Kismat Apne Haath

As and when this blogpost was being written this video had already earned 2.1 million views since it was launched on 15th Sept’14.

This is another beautiful video were Google tries to boost the confidence of Indian youth population and sends across a strong message of ‘keep moving’ and attain all success in life. While the video also captures cultural diversity that exists in this vast country, the script has been very well crafted by incorporating city names like Dungarpur and Meerut. Hence, it is very well evident that the product that  Google tries to highlight ‘Android One’ is mainly positioned at Tier-2, Tier-3 cities and the brand is cognizant of local needs.

Video 3: #SpecialDelivery – Celebrating unsung heroes of online shopping

This latest video by Google is a fairly new but it has already earned lot of word of mouth. This was launched on 17th Dec’14 and already received over 0.4 million views.

Day in and day out we order various goods from all major and minor e-commerce players in the country. We thrash the player if they fail to deliver the product on time. However, as customers  have we ever thought who are those thousands of delivery men who enable this ecosystem. After I saw this ad, I felt did even e-commerce player ever had plans to thank their countless delivery men who ensure their supply chain doesn’t crash. But, there arrived the thought to Google. They capitalized on the opportunity and also simultaneously tried to fulfill their business objectives – 1) Create awareness about GOSF.in, 2) Entice more e-commerce players to join this festival in the next season, 3) Encourage end customers to shop during GOSF. Hence, I think this video is a classic effort by Google.

One common theme cuts across all three videos analyzed above. Gone are days when brands just focused on products / services to attain their objectives. In this Digitized World, brands need to step up their efforts and focus on how creatively they can leverage the Content Marketing aspects.

I will try to capture some more brands in future blogposts that have done well in this area. Stay tuned and yes don’t be lazy to share your thoughts / comments for me 🙂

Key Takeaways from ‘State of Community Management’2014’ report

Community Management continues to be the buzzword in the Digital era. Every brand, irrespective of their domain are geared towards one common objective of building a community around their brand. Social media has empowered brands to a great extent to attain this objective. In the race to build the largest community some brands take the vanilla paid approach and hence boost the topline of social media channels like Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn. While others, put sincere efforts and formalize a strategy that will help them build a valuable community.

CMM

Image Credit: The Community Roundtable

The Community Roundtable has been publishing reports since 2010 on ‘State of Community Management’, which is prepared after surveying a large number of community managers across the World. This year’s survey included 164 communities across industries. The Community Roundtable developed a Community Maturity Model (CMM) that could help organizations understand, plan and assess the performance of their social community and relevant social business initiatives.

Some of the key takeaways from the report, that could be of interest to business owners, CMOs and digital marketers are as follows:

  • 85% of respondents from the top 20% who managed mature communities, could measure the value of their communities and 48% of respondents from average communities could do so. So, gone are days when community building exercise was just looked upon as a branding activity. Now, its absolutely possible to measure value.
  • 58% of communities that are able to measure value include CMO / CIO / CEO participation. This clearly indicates that participation of top management is required in the community management activities.
  • 75% of community managers were empowered to promote, encourage and reward productive behaviors. Let’s accept that community managers are the first touchpoint of an organization and who else can be a better person to judge the efforts of community members. His/her empowerment can ensure quick decision making and better engagement.
  • Best-in-class communities are managed by twice the number of community managers of an average community. So, as an organization don’t put all pressure on one community manager. But, hire a couple more so that they effectiveness could be reached.
  • The most common activities of a community manager include – a) creating content, b) curating and sharing content, c) welcoming new members, d) new member recruitment, e) facilitating introductions and/or connections.
  • 91% of best-in-class communities have well-crafted community policies to promote ideal behavior, while 67% of average communities have the same. A policy in place provides a transparency of expectations from the community manager and the community members. It also leaves less scope for crisis situations.
  • Communities with CXO level participation have seen 74% usage of microblogging, 71% mobile usage, 74% video sharing and 79% image sharing. While for average communities, the numbers were 59%, 62%, 62% & 69% respectively. This clearly indicates that participation of CXO level executives leads to rich content sharing and hence better engagement between the community members.
  • The key metrics of community measurement are – volume of new content, volume of comments, questions answered, new member activity, resolution time, behavior flows and conversation.

As a community manager what efforts do you put in to ensure the engagement on community keeps flourishing?