When it comes to creating customer facing content, how are decisions made at your organization? Without well defined and documented content use case requirements, at each functional level, but ideally at the business or enterprise level, organizations experience reduced efficiency, effectiveness, and a lower return on content investments.
How can you prioritize investments and creation efforts without this input? How can you map and assess your customer facing content? How can you be clear about the specific purpose of each content work product?
Unfortunately, this work is seldom done, even at functional levels.
The objective of a content publishing operation is to get the best performance from customer facing content, output from resources, time and effort, and return on content. In the vernacular, we’re all trying to do more with less. As demand for content scales, this is becoming more critical.
A key principle of a content publishing process is to pre-produce content so it is available the instant it is required. This sharpens the rhetoric of “delivering the right content, to the right audiences, the right way at the right time.” The right time is always NOW.
The implications for annual planning and budgeting are significant. So too for new product introductions, automated nurturing campaigns, social selling and marketing initiatives. And what about support for channel content requirements?
A new requirement is to optimize all key B2B marketing and selling content criteria. We’ve identified seven specifically.
At any given time: on your website, through your email campaigns, and in sales conversations are buyers who represent ALL PRIMARY POINTS on your content use case requirements map. They are interested in every key problem/need/pain or issue your product addresses. They represent each key stakeholder, at every buying stage. They represent each vertical you sell to.
Your buyers have every question you identified in your persona work. They often prefer different types and formats of content. And not just at specific buying stages. At every stage across the buying continuum different audiences prefer short form text, deeper explanations, checklists and guides, visual and video formats for example.
You can’t do it all you say? Of course. And that’s the point. How do you decide? But also, how do you design a content operation that can scale.
In most organizations, marketing and sales content decisions are made by individuals responsible for individual tactics, within siloed groups, throughout the organization. This is not a strategic consideration, merely support for a tactic.
Throughout organizations, content decisions are made in different ways: as individual bias, squeaky wheel syndrome, an “important request” from a key executive, or simply what time and resources permit. Without a visual map of the overall requirements that can be reviewed and prioritized, this behavior won’t change.
B2B Marketing and Sales Content Use Case Requirements Map
We have found the following content use case requirements model is a useful tool in our content strategy and execution work with clients.
The video below will step you through a deeper explanation. But as you listen, ask yourself “what parts of this do I NOT need?” You will, of course, have some. What you might realize, depending on your go-to-customer strategy, personas and buying process analysis, is how much you really do require.
In subsequent posts we will discuss execution approaches and techniques to accomplish these objectives. We will also explain in greater detail the implications and use of Core vs. Extension content elements.