Marketing professionals working in various industries recognize the potential of content marketing. They know a well-drafted and executed content marketing strategy would help them grab more eyeballs. It can also help by boosting the search engine rankings. But owing to the intense prevailing competition from brands, following an ordinary content marketing strategy isn’t enough.
Marketing professionals must upgrade to a more advanced and efficient form of content marketing that encompasses a holistic approach - an approach that leaves an impact on the target audience via stellar content pieces delivered in different engaging formats.
If enough time and effort are put in, it can be achieved with the help of creating an unforgettable content experience. Let’s dive in and know more about what it is and how it can be created for visible results.
What is Content Experience?
A content experience can be best defined as the overall experience of finding, accessing, consuming, and engaging with a sequence of well-organized brand content available across different platforms and devices.
Most online readers are at different buying stages where they need relevant, ongoing resources to help them move purposefully forward in their journey. A content experience helps deliver such resources in the form of stellar content.
The content experience begins with context and how it reaches your target audience. It also encompasses how the brand content is structured and how it manages to engage people with it. It requires snappy writing backed by a strong strategy on how to feed it to your target audience.
Take MailChimp, for example. MailChimp has championed the art of delivering stellar content experiences. MailChimp segregated its content experiences into categories covering product guides, practical marketing tips, tutorials, the fundamentals of email marketing, and success stories.
Each category caters to a specific audience personal. The marketing tips section is geared towards helping business owners boost their revenue through automation workflows, A/B testing, e-commerce marketing strategies, etc.
MailChimp knows what the audience wants. It delivers the same in an engaging, well-structured, easy-to-find manner, providing a pleasant content experience.
There are no defined rules to help marketing professionals create a winning content experience. But after analyzing most top brands’ digital assets, a common string of frameworks was found. Hence if marketing professionals want to deliver exceptional content experiences, the following points should be followed and executed.
Let's understand How to Create a Winning Content Experience.
1. Enhance the Reading Experience
When putting in a lot of effort to create excellent content, make sure people don’t have to squint and strain to read what is written. Keeping the text large enough for people to comfortably read it is a good practice. Another point to implement for a seamless content experience is to use paragraph breaks. Use as many H2s, H3s, italics, bold, etc., as possible, so people can skim through the content or go through it in one sitting.
Avoid using more than five lines at a stretch for ease of reading. Otherwise, the text may appear like a wall of text that no one would be interested in looking at. If creating long content is a part of the content strategy, make sure enough jump links are used throughout the content. It enables the reader to navigate to the section she/he is interested in reading.
Another way to enhance the reading experience is to place aesthetic charts, graphs, infographics, etc. If these cannot be placed throughout the content, a video summarizing the main idea shared through the content would also suffice.
2. Leverage the Strength of Each Platform
Back in time, sharing links to blog posts on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, etc., used to do wonders. But it isn’t the case anymore. Be it Facebook or Twitter, every platform wants people to spend more time on their platform. Hence if marketing managers want to succeed, they have to play to the strength of each platform. It will help create a memorable content experience and also deliver long-term results.
To create a seamless content experience, start by creating standalone posts in a form that best matches the format of the respective platform. For example, you can convert the learning of a blog post into an informative thread on Twitter or a series of standalone posts on Facebook that help you establish yourself as an authority. Long-form text can also be converted into text-based videos and posted on platforms like YouTube to garner more views.
Every platform is distinct and created for people to discover varied content formats. So if marketing managers want the content to reach more people, they will have to optimize the content in optimal ways.
Using different platforms inappropriately would make the content more ineffective, and the target audience would start alienated. To prevent this, begin identifying the ideal ways to distribute content in each environment.
3. Personalize the Content
Even if a brand offers one product/service, it can be used by different people with varying problems, aspirations, and interests. It is one reason why no brand talks to a broad target audience in the same way. It rather segments the audience into various categories and creates personas for reference. These personas are then used to create personalized content for each type of person within the audience.
Marketing managers can do something similar to create and offer the best content experience. Segmenting email lists to ensure only relevant emails are sent to a category of people is one effective way to approach things instead of sending out mass communication emails to the entire list. It can be combined with targeted advertising to create a complete content ecosystem that meets the needs of every audience within a defined category.
Personalizing content isn’t always creating individual content pieces for the defined personas. At times, it refers to changing the way you present the created content to the audience.
4. Guide Readers Through the Content
Every content piece is created with a purpose in mind. The goal can be to present the brand as a thought leader or contribute to an ongoing conversation. It can be different for different brands. But irrespective of the purpose the content has, it should be able to guide the readers smoothly throughout the content. It is believed that good content naturally leads or links to another piece of relevant or related content.
It can happen with proper interlinking throughout the content or crafting relevant content upgrade materials, making compelling calls to action on a given topic. The content strategy should have plans to create an ecosystem of related content, so the brand can deliver a connected content experience, irrespective of the funnel stage people are in.
The end goal of marketing managers should be to make people stay within the brand content ecosystem and continually assist them in discovering the value of the brand. Doing so is crucial so that when the brand attempts to pitch, people are more than ready to hear it.
5. De-Silofy Your Content & Teams
A mistake some marketing managers make is organizing the brand content by content date or format. This is a deadly mistake because it makes the content undiscoverable or hard to locate. To fix this problem, it is essential that the created content is grouped according to category and further grouped according to content format. Such content organization will allow readers to quickly locate the desired content correlating to their respective stages in the buyer’s journey. Following this method, marketing managers can easily extract content, improving the content experience.
Delivering the best content experience is not one person’s job. It is the combined responsibility of a sales manager, content marketer, digital marketer, product manager, graphic designer, UX designer, etc. These teams often don’t work together in tandem, hampering the overall content experience.
To fix this problem, the CMO needs to bring together all these teams on the same page, making them work together to achieve the same goal. Making seamless collaborative processes is the only way to deliver a smooth content experience.
Creating Winning Content Experiences Requires More than Content Creation
Creating a seamless content experience can be very rewarding for brands. But it can only be possible when marketing managers realize that creating it requires more than stellar content creation.
The entire experience is more about building a well-connected content ecosystem than delivering disjointed pieces of content and guiding the readers through the different stages of the marketing funnel while solving all their major pain points.
A winning content experience can only be delivered if the team responsible for creating it understands the target audience’s psychology. Figuring out what the target audience wants and creating content addressing those queries is half the battle won.
Marketing managers who want to go beyond the typical content marketing measures to stay relevant should try the methods shared above to create a memorable content experience for their target audience.
The creation of content is done with the purpose of educating people about specific brands. However, a positive content experience stands as a result of good content and its related aspects which leads to a better name for that brand. Content marketing strategies can also be put up as an essential point in deciding on content experience. The need for creating a better content experience and the tips required to accomplish the same are shared in the above context.
What is meant by content experience?
A content experience is a reaction given by online readers or anyone who comes in contact with the shared content of specific brands.
What is content marketing?
Content marketing is the creation and sharing of particular data with the purpose of diverting audience attention towards the marketed brand.
Can a content experience make or break a brand?
Yes, the Content experience can not wholly make or break a brand. But surely they have a great impact on its success rate and popularity.
Who all forms an essential part of the content experience?
The whole team responsible for the content creation and its management is counted as part of establishing customer experience. Content creation and content marketing are two important aspects of establishing a content experience.
Why content experience is important?
Content experience creates an impression on the audience. Creating a good impression can result in better advertisement of a product and a good increment in its sales.