“Content may be king, but he needs a translator.” – Julie Wisdom, Executive Creative Director
Given that content marketing is a TOP PRIORITY for savvy B2B demand generation marketers, I wanted to provide you with a quick list of eight essential “Content Terms” to boost your content marketing vocabulary and support you in your content practice.
This is an umbrella term encompassing all marketing formats that involve the creation or sharing of content for the purpose of engaging current and potential customers. When executed correctly, content marketing should deliver high-quality, relevant and valuable information to prospects and customers, resulting in profitable consumer action.
A persona is an audience profile that puts a face and an identity to qualitative data about the target audience. Each persona is an archetype representing the needs and goals of a particular group of users. Personas give us a clear target. Via definite backgrounds, names, and personalities personas help us all stay focused on the significant concerns of our audience.
The buyers journey is a scenario that describes the stages through which a customer or prospect moves through the purchasing process – which typically includes the following:
Buyer’s Journey Steps – These are the steps a buyer takes within each stage to satisfy needs, overcome objections, and ultimately, make a solution recommendation or purchase decision. The buyer’s journey steps include: loosen the status quo, commit to change, explore and compare solutions, justify the decision, etc.
Take a look at this infographic of the buyer’s journey: The Buyer’s Journey Diagram for B2B Demand Generation (and More)
Content strategy is the big-picture process that includes auditing, analyzing, mapping and developing content to meet information needs while supporting business goals and objectives. Additionally, content strategy includes a “gap analysis” designed to define net new content that’s required to fully support the buyer’s journey stages/steps. This gap analysis is too often overlooked.
Atomization means to create (or repurpose) core content to be used in multiple ways, tailoring assets to fit audience information needs, including format, channel and stage in the buyer’s journey. (For example, a video interview can be just a video—or multi-purposed as a blog post, twitter stream, white paper, etc.). This assures a more efficient use of content and a more cohesive story overall. I’ve also heard companies refer to this as Multi-Purposing or Repurposing. In Content Rules, by Ann Handley and C.C. Chapman, this approach is referred to as Re-Imagining (which I love) – as it suggests something that is deliberate and intentional.
Content Asset (or Format)
An asset is a discrete piece of content that serves a specific purpose. Examples include white papers, videos, e-books, podcasts, events, webinars/webcasts data sheets or interactive tools such as product demos or ROI calculators. Often, an asset is something that may be downloaded for offline viewing or sharing. Printed brochures or dimensional pieces are also assets.
A collection of assets created from one core asset that has been “atomized.”
The Buyer’s Journey Diagram for B2B Demand Generation (and More)
How Busy B2B Demand Generation Marketers Can (Still) Use Personas
5 Steps to Building a Rock-Solid Content Roadmap for B2B Demand Generation
Take 4 Steps Back for 1 Giant Leap Forward: The Buyer-Centric Marketing Model