SiriusDecisions Forum – Building an Audience-Centric B-to-B Content Engine

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Ah… we somewhat know our personas, but not enough (based on the consensus of the forum’s audience).

But…  we have so many personas and programs!  We need to prioritize personas by programs.

Key issues:

  • B-to-b organizations understand that modern buyers seek more and higher-quality content than ever before
  • Very few b-to-b companies understand their buyers’ decisions process and thus struggle to create the right content at the right time for their buyers
  • With an audience-centric approach, organizations have an opportunity to deliver better-quality and higher-impact content while increasing scale and efficiency.

Though smaller companies (<$100M) produce about 80% of content internally, larger organizations (>$1B), produce about 53% of content internally.

The unfortunate situation is that advanced organizations do not distribute all created content (activate = distribute).  Just adding a piece of content to the website is not “promotion.”

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Top reasons why the content is not used: findability and relevance.

Some organizations found success with the “content amnesty week” when any content can be easily re-surfaced without any questions asked about its original purpose and justification.

CXO Buyers indicate that previous experience with the company is the most likely reason behind the selection of the vendor (the experience does not require a previous purchase; it might be a webinar attendance, etc.).

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CXO opinion:

  • Analyst reports are the most effective (Gartner, etc.)
  • Content provided by a rep is very influential in the vendor selection
    • Successful sales reps use more content than unsuccessful ones
    • Packaged demos are effective when promoted by sales
  • CXOs engage in human and non-human interaction with the company at the same rate throughout the buying process (education > solution > selection)
    • Live webinars are considered “human interaction”

Interesting point from the audience:

  • “Look at the sales data: what is helping sales?  Very useful data, but a lot of work to find it.”
  • “Understand why deals were lost.  In some cases, the culprit might be pricing or product features rather than content.”

Content strategy is the biggest pain for the organizations and usually absent.  When internal stakeholders demand: “We need more content!” the reasonable question is: “What are you trying to accomplish?”

SiriusDecisions provides Content Transformation Roadmap.  The recommendation is to try content transformation without…  telling anybody (if it is the easiest approach  🙂 ).  “Just do it!”

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