How do you come up with new content, week after week, so your audience doesn’t collectively roll their eyes when they see it?
The answer is in the question. Quite simply, you can’t send content out week after week — not without a clear plan in place. After a while, you’ll run out of ideas, and you’ll publish things because you “have to,” not because you actually have anything important to say. And as a result, the important things you do say will be lost in the avalanche of your week-after-week stuff.
Publishing meaningful content and getting your audience to read and engage with that content is all about planning and timing. Content marketing teams live and die by their editorial calendars. And good content marketers know that they can’t hit a prospect repeatedly, day after day with new content — be that a webinar, blog post or eBook — without burnout.
The same goes for internal activation within your own team. Just like prospects, different roles want and expect different things. So, just as you’d segment your prospects, it’s important to tier employees to avoid internal content marketing activation burnout.
- Tier One (The Frontline) – Otherwise known as the frontline sales team, SDR or BDR teams, this audience segment could also include the field marketing team and other users of your content. It’s their job to follow up on content leads and they therefore need detailed information in order to speak productively and proactively to the prospect. They’ll want to know the most important selling points of the content and how to further the conversation after the initial lead qualification. You can speak to this tier more frequently — about once a week — to educate them on new content initiatives.
- Tier Two (The Frontline Leadership) – This tier is mostly centered around the sales management team. They’re managing the frontline sales reps and need to understand what is in the content pipeline. They should be contacted on a monthly or bi-weekly basis via email about the content plans for the organization. They could also be segmented based on need. They are the influencers and can therefore get the rest of the sales team on board with your content plans.
- Tier Three (The Company Leadership) – Thought-leadership within your organization is almost as important as external thought-leadership with your customers and prospects. The leadership team (CMO, CEO, COO, VP and SVP) need to be aware of your content pipeline as they can serve as great internal (and external) promoters for your initiatives. But, only send leadership your biggest initiatives.
Now that you’ve tiered your internal team, be sure that each internal activation piece passes the following three tests before it goes out:
1. Is there a desire for new information?
Chances are, if the internal activation machine is fired up every time a new Survey Monkey result comes in, you’ll create burnout and information overload. Instead, make the major content infrequent. Create a desire and receptivity for more information, both among your audience and your sales team.
2. Is it interesting?
You can’t assume people will find a piece of content interesting, even if it’s part of their job to be interested. People need to be engaged and shown how something is fun and relevant. Activating a product data sheet with a sales team won’t do that. But, a big breakthrough that has involved multiple teams and has been months in the making will.
3. Were they involved in the creation process?
Create vested interest. For example, if I contribute to a sales report that the company will use, I’ll be proud of it and pay more attention to it. I will champion for that piece of content if I’m involved. Try to involve as many people as it makes sense to involve. But, don’t have everything written by a committee or you’ll get nothing done.
Bottom line, not everything is newsworthy. Many marketers already know not to pester journalists with a press release about every change their business makes. However, relatively unimportant information, like a new data sheet or small survey are still showcased outside of blog posts, and usually end up in the big marketing push and internal activation campaigns. But, there’s a downside to all this information sharing. A limited number of people will find each and every update relevant and they’ll eventually ignore you altogether.