Research shows that a very small fraction of a company’s content — just 5 percent of it— accounts for 90 percent of overall customer engagement. That means 95 percent of branded content doesn’t really matter.

With so little brands taking the time to truly nurture their content marketing plans, it’s easy to see this being true. That doesn’t make it any less frightening though (and you thought Halloween was scary).

This makes me wonder: does content marketing have to be this way? How come every piece of content can’t be completely relevant, engaging and impactful? I think it can, but not without extraordinary effort, hard work and collaboration enterprise-wide.

You read that right: your content marketing efforts must span your entire organization. When you think about it, the traditional roles and responsibilities of marketing have evolved in such a way that they now have a hand in every facet of business. The customer experience is no longer siloed to a phone call a customer has with a sales rep or a contact center agent. Customers are having meaningful conversations with the brands they love over Facebook. They expect brands to reply to their tweets almost instantaneously. They’re using their mobile devices to engage with companies on-the-go. They’re downloading mobile apps for a more seamless user experience. They’re commenting and sharing the blogs your company produces.

Marketing has evolved from a one-way street (print ads, billboards) to a multi-dimensional freeway that’s packed with communication 24×7. Customers have more ways to engage with the brands they love, and companies now have access to more customer data than they ever imagined.

A customer might reach out to a company via Facebook with a billing inquiry, for example. Another may engage in SMS with a brand about a product defect or a service question. Marketing is no longer all about selling, and every business unit is no longer contained to its own segment. Businesses are being challenged to evolve into one cohesive entity in order to thrive. This means HR, finance, sales, support, the supply chain…every aspect of business should have a solid understanding of the role that content and communications play in delivering a truly 360-degree, next-generation customer experience.

The bottom line is this: The content your company produces must be in alignment with every moving part of your business. More importantly, every part of your business must move at the same pace of innovation with the same goals in mind. In the end, the customer experience isn’t (and never will be) siloed to just one or two specific departments.

Your customers are the lifeblood of your organization; they support every part of your company’s body. If your content doesn’t matter to your customers, it won’t matter at all. If your content only targets one or two things that matter to your customers, it will only matter for so long. Content marketing should be an organizational strategy driven by one unified vision that supports the entire customer lifecycle. Until businesses understand this fact, the majority of their content will continue to miss the mark.

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