You probably spend a lot of time and resources to get your audience to your website. But driving them to a plethora of low-value content is not the experience any brand wants to be serving up. And yet, marketing teams can easily fall into the habit of thinking, ”To deliver the differentiated and tailored digital experience today’s customers expect, we have to significantly increase content output.” As odd as this may sound, volume isn’t about more, it’s about scale.
A recent study Sitecore commissioned with Advanis showed that marketers are stretched to the breaking point due to the effects from COVID-19 and the need to adapt to changing market dynamics, as well as the typical priorities required to support the brand going forward. Although this study wasn’t specifically about content creators, breaking the “more is better” mindset can help free up you and your teams from creating low-value content that contributes to this type of pressure.
What can you do to break the habit and start leading a more impactful content strategy in your organization? Here are our five best practices to help you get underway.
1. Stay true to your primary content goal
Digital fatigue is real, and one of the biggest lessons it has taught us is that more content does not mean you’ll see more lead generation opportunities. For example, we have found that simply adding more emails to a communications plan doesn’t move the needle at all.
If low lead generation numbers have you sweating, keep your content efforts focused on how to increase value and avoid the temptation to create more content, such as hitting your customer’s inbox with an additional communication or tacking on more calls to action to a page that will distract them from taking the desired next step in their customer journey.
2. Establish clearly defined content types
Setting clear definitions for your content across the organization is a key step for tracking performance and determining the types of content to ramp up. This is especially true when your content lifecycle spans multiple systems, such as a content management system (CMS), a customer relationship management (CRM) system like Salesforce, a marketing automation system, etc.
Clear asset type definitions will ensure that your organization is measuring apples to apples when determining the types of content that performs well with your overall audience. Plus, if your organization stores its content in a digital asset management (DAM) system, it allows you to see where the opportunities are to repurpose existing and top performing content. You’ll avoid constantly reinventing the wheel to power your personalization efforts, and you’ll be able to make better decisions around priorities.
3. Standardize and modularize web experience content
Let’s face it. Without a digital customer experience, there is no product. But that also means a lot of pages will need to be built on your website. And creating the personalized web experience that makes every visitor feel like they are getting a 1-to-1 experience quickly starts to feel overwhelming for any content team.
First, standardization is key to help minimize the amount of content requirements for repeatable page layouts, such as asset landing pages. Take your list of asset types from the previous tip and create templates for the standard asset web pages. This will help you establish the tools to empower other internal or external teams to contribute to content creation.
And second, modularization will help with the more complex web experience content, such as personalizing a hub page for various industries. Modularization enables you to focus on blocks of content at a time. And sets you up for establishing other streamlined strategies for when you might have to pivot quickly.
4. Make data-informed content decisions
As content strategy conversations are taking place, data can be your best ally for clear direction. We as content creators often start off marketing projects with lofty aspirations. But solid data can help validate the strategy we should employ and it will shed light on areas where we should adjust, take a different approach, or scrap all together.
If you aren’t already factoring data into your content strategy, get started now with some key metrics and KPIs. For more complex personalization strategies, leverage data with the mindset to start small, benchmark, evolve, and then repeat so you’re scaling and adjusting content where needed instead of all at once. This will also help you improve your personalization.
5. Create compelling messaging with fewer words
When it comes to digital experience, your copy is like the icing on the cupcake. More icing often forces your audience to dig farther than they have to in order to get to the part they want, or even abandon it all together. There should be just enough to make people want to bite and feel confident about going back for more.
Try to remember this sweet spot when you’re creating new content and someone wants to keep adding layers. Instead of higher volumes, focus your efforts on scaling through iteration.
If you’re unsure how well your organization is connecting with customers through content, take our content maturity assessment and get a personalized report to see how your organization stacks up.