As the COVID-19 forces companies to halt trade shows, gatherings and events globally, digital content has become essential in driving business opportunities, marketing education and customer engagement , according to a new report from the CMO Council.

The report, Making Content Marketing Convert noted marketing organisations lack the necessary capabilities and processes to keep pace with a growing marketing imperative. 

While the impact of the coronavirus, or COVID-19, on face-to-face business interactions, particularly large gatherings, has been swift and pervasive, content will need to pick up the slack. 

According to Donovan Neale-May, executive director of CMO Council, “Marketers must act quickly and decisively to increase the impact, scope, reach and return of their content marketing investments in 2020.

“Our research also shows there is a critical need for marketing organisations to bring more discipline and strategic thinking to content specification, delivery and analytics.”

The report, developed with NetLine, a targeted B2B content syndication and sales funnel acceleration company, provides insights into the problems marketing organisations face in elevating the business impact of content development, distribution and lead conversion. 

It also provides a concise set of best practices, along with a self-assessment checklist for lead performance improvement.

The marketing research underlines problems and shortcomings in current content marketing initiatives. 

These include, only 12 per cent of marketers believe their content marketing programs target the right audiences with relevant and persuasive content, 21 per cent say they are sufficiently partnered with their sales counterparts in developing and measuring demand generation programs.

Most brands view their content marketing process as ad hoc, decentralised and driven by internal stakeholders, rather than customer interests.

While 88 per cent of business buyers say online content impacts vendor selection, just nine per cent think of vendors as trusted sources of content.

According to the report, there are ten ways brands can show effective authority and leadership-driven content marketing.  

  1. Partner with credible and trusted sources
  2. Produce relevant and compelling strategic insights
  3. Add customer-contributed views and validation
  4. Present authoritative, newsworthy and enriched content
  5. Engage qualified, verified and predisposed audiences
  6. Target the whole influencer, specifier and buyer ecosystem
  7. Embrace multi-channel distribution, promotion and syndication
  8. Authenticate content consumption and buyer engagement
  9. Ensure lead legitimacy and compliance 
  10. Cultivate, Activate and convert prospect flow

Download the report at https://cmocouncil.org/thought-leadership/reports/making-content-marketing-convert

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