Content marketing costs 62 percent less than outbound marketing, but generates more than three times as many leads (Content Marketing Institute). Marketers recognize the value of leveraging good content and most companies today use some form of content marketing. We see evidence of this on social media, blogs and other online content distribution sources. Unfortunately, the sheer volume of material that companies are constantly pushing out has reached spam-like levels. Without the right content strategy, even good content gets lost in the abyss.
In response to over-saturation, marketers are constantly working to figure out new ways to cut through the noise. Everyone wants to launch content that is unique and meaningful because it gets noticed. But many companies struggle with finding the right messaging strategy. According to HubSpot, 55 percent of B2B marketers are unclear on what content marketing success or effectiveness looks like. The same source says only 30 percent of B2B marketers believe their organizations are effective at content marketing – an 8 percent decrease in a year-over-year comparison. As more companies get on board with content marketing, it is clearly becoming more challenging to see results.
Maybe you can relate to these struggles and you’re reevaluating your content strategy. Have you thought about taking an entirely new approach?
Elevate with an Industry Narrative
As a PR firm that helps companies reinvent their positioning and messaging strategy, we’ve talked to many marketers desperately trying to break the mold. What they usually don’t realize is that every company has the opportunity to elevate their message with an industry narrative. An industry narrative provides the market with a clear understanding of an organization’s vision and leadership. It focuses on the state and future of the industry, and helps define and advance it. A good industry narrative not only benefits the organization by aligning its efforts toward a common goal, but it leaves a lasting impact on the industry.
By focusing on something bigger than themselves -i.e. the industry they live in– marketers can develop content that speaks at a higher level, which automatically elevates them above their competition and grabs the attention of important industry influencers. For example, imagine redirecting your content strategy to focus on something that not only challenges your competitors, but resonates with them. When you are the driving force behind the narrative, you will own the content space as well.
We’ve seen this work time and again. In fact, we find that the companies with a clear vision and industry narrative are the ones who achieve the most success with their marketing and PR efforts. Through an industry narrative an organization answers the following big questions:
View – what is the current state of the industry?
Trends – what are the current trends that are shaping the industry?
Vision – what does the future look like for the industry and what is the company’s role in the narrative?
By offering an accurate view to the industry, a vision for the future, and insight on big industry trends, the content marketing team will not only have a surplus of rich fodder to leverage for marketing efforts, but the message will be unique and it will matter to the audience. Additionally, by owning the narrative the company takes complete ownership over their role within the industry.
Interested in learning more about how to develop your industry narrative? Checkout our workshops or read our book.