As modern marketers, we must build content that is relevant to our audience. Web copy, email, gated assets, videos…all of these take time to develop, and we should direct our efforts wisely.
Content marketers need to develop the right content that appeals to the right groups of people. This isn’t just a marketing lesson, but a life one. After all, you wouldn’t send romance novels to science fiction fans, just like you wouldn’t prepare the perfect prime rib dinner for strict vegetarians.
A few months ago, Marketo’s Phillip Chen explained how they have been experimenting with interest-based nurturing by taking existing content and reorganizing it around specific topics of interest. They grouped assets into topics like “email marketing” and “Microsoft Dynamics,” and then analyzed prior behavior by prospects to match them to these topics.
With the new groupings around topics of interests, their email open rates increased from 22% to 34%. More importantly, click-through rates increased from 5.1% to 12.6%. That’s more than double the clicks, just by aiming at a prospect’s interests.
Marketo was able to increase engagement because they leveraged prior customer data to deliver more relevant content to specific audiences. Tapping into your current CRM to group interests for prospects can be a lot of work, but understanding the wants and needs of your target buyers can pay off in big ways..
Big Data Helps Find Gems in Social and Behavioral Data
What if you could monitor the content that your audience is truly interested in?
Many people are now commenting and sharing ideas on social platforms such as LinkedIn and Twitter. Twitter indicates that there are, on average, more than 500 million tweets sent per day – this is an overwhelming amount of data (in the range of quadrillions of bytes) that could tell you about the interests of your current audience as well as help you discover a new audience.
If we could filter out the noise in the copious amount of data, we would be able to determine what our current customers truly care about (by looking at what hashtags they typically use in tweets, for example) and who else shares these interests. By identifying individuals and their interests, we will not only be able to create content that appeals and helps our current clients, but we will also be able to expand our reach to like-minded individuals.
Get a glimpse into the power of this data by taking a quick look at your Twitter feed. Hopefully, you’re following relevant thought leaders and prospects. Notice any consistency in topics? What kinds of hashtags come up again and again?
For a deeper dive, you can also utilize tools that comb social and behavioral data to find patterns that yield detailed insights into a buyer’s decision-making stage for purchasing a solution. These insights provide you answers to the common “why”— as in, why certain groups of prospects would be interested in receiving the same content. Often, it’s because they have similar challenges, pain points, and interests. By creating buyer personas (this eBook explains how), you can identify patterns in these segments and identify how much content you’ll need to produce for each.
The ROI of Big Data
It can be difficult to gather and match interests/behaviors to the right customer segments, but by utilizing big data analytics, it’s now possible to predict which messages and/or content will best engage your audience. This is great news for content marketers, and as McKinsey & Company stated last year in their infographic, “marketers should learn to stop worrying and love the data.”
When you orient your content around interests, the performance boost can be impressive. McKinsey estimates that big data leaders have, on average, 5% higher productivity and 6% higher profits than other companies.
Looking for more information about big data for content marketers? Check out our webinar “Content Intelligence – How to Survive The Arms Race In Content Marketing.“