Part of content strategy work is ascertaining what tools are needed to create efficiency. Content creators and managers require repeatable processes for the creation, dissemination, and management of content marketing. As with just about everything else, it's critical to have the right tools for the job.
Deep research I've conducted around the content marketing software landscape revealed no less than eight different use cases for content marketing, each encompassing several sub-categories. There are tools out there that address each and every one of these scenarios.
Yet while vendors (and solutions) in the content marketing space proliferate, there's fantastically low awareness on the brand side -- among the organizations committing content marketing -- that these solutions exist. Too often, when I work with clients to craft content strategy and conduct stakeholder interviews, the answers to my questions around tools and technology belie utter ignorance of how tools can make their jobs easier.
Answers to questions such as, "What tools do you use in your content marketing initiatives?" most often are either absurdly general ("email") or not marketing-specific ("PhotoShop"). There's a real lack of awareness that there's stuff out there that can really help move initiatives forward.
The vendors behind these solutions don't have it much easier. Because content marketing is an emerging discipline that still lacks infrastructure, it's not clear who to approach internally with solutions. The CMO? The head of digital? Rarely (even if this is changing) is one individual charged with overseeing content, unlike parallel disciplines such as social media, communications, or advertising.
That's the question OneSpot (disclosure: I'm on the company's advisory board) asked top marketers in a survey. What if you had a tool that solved your content marketing problems?
Here are some desires they expressed.
Creating content without first crafting a content strategy that answers two critical questions -- why are we creating content, and how are we going to go about doing it -- is an express ticket into scattershot efforts and inefficiency.
It's time to close the awareness gap when it comes to the tools and technologies that support content marketing, as well as integrate content with other marketing and enterprise initiatives.
Rebecca Lieb is a strategic advisor.
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