The Content Marketing Strategy table was hosted by Eu-Gene Ang, the Lead Trainer for Econsultancy, Asia.

To help us all understand what brand marketers are thinking about content marketing, he helpfully put together a ‘Top Five’ list of what was discussed.

1. Defining content marketing

Participants felt there are a lot of ways to define content marketing, but most agreed that content marketing is about telling the brand story, providing insights to the right target audience, and adding value to their lives.

2. Benefits of content marketing

Three main benefits of content marketing kept on coming up through the day:

  1. It’s always-on marketing which resonates far beyond a short-term ad campaign.
  2. Content marketing helps where ads are receiving less attention due to ad blindness and ad-blocking software.
  3. Content can potentially deliver higher returns for your marketing spend.

3. Global vs. Local considerations

Participants felt it was best practice to avoid forcing globally-created content pieces through local marketing channels – especially if the content required translation.

Instead, the global team should put together a toolkit with elements such as images, research data, and keywords and the local teams should assemble the content pieces so that they are relevant to the local target audience

4. Content marketing strategy

As with all marketing, participants felt that content strategy should start with user insights and understanding the target audience.

However, most confessed that their content marketing is still product-focused rather than audience-focused and some are doing content without any user insights at all.

5. Measurement and ROI

Most agreed that content marketing success should not be judged by short-term sales goals.

Instead, companies should spend the effort required to have a more holistic marketing attribution model as content is just one part of the marketing funnel.

Customer Experience Management

Next up, was the Customer Experience (CX) Management table hosted by yours truly – Jeff Rajeck, Researcher and Consultant for Econsultancy, Asia.

Over the course of three 90-minute sessions, the discussions covered six main topics:

1. Touchpoints

Multiple touchpoint, or multi-channel, marketing is a key part of improving the customer journey. According to participants, though, mobile is the touchpoint causing most concern at brands.

As marketers, we were able to ‘get away with a lot’ when advertising and delivering content on the desktop, but on mobile we have to focus to a much greater extent.

Also, brands are now increasing digital spend to try and be where the customers spend more and more of their time – on the mobile touchpoint.

2. Customer acquisition

Participants said that instead of just focusing on generic conversions, brands are now looking for ‘believers’.

These are people who become advocates for the brand, so that other potential customers are learning about the brand from other people – and not just the company’s marketers.

Everyone felt that this improves customer experience greatly.

3. Learning

One question that came up repeatedly was, ‘how should brands engage with customers between purchases?’

The knee-jerk response was ‘content’, but a very interesting response came up. Why will people look to brands to provide content that they can easily get elsewhere?

No easy answers here, but definitely a point to consider when trying to improve CX through producing content.

4. Conversion

When looking at the whole customer journey, most brands said that digital is used for information but most customers still convert in stores.

So, when reviewing CX, you have to consider the hand-off from digital to physical.

5. Customer care

Participants noted that customers are using social media now instead of call centres to get customer service. This means that social listening is becoming part of everyday marketing operations at most brands.

Also, many mentioned that they are using Net Promoter Score as an indicator of whether their customer care is succeeding in pleasing customers.

6. Metrics

And finally, most of the brand marketers felt that they were way behind on coming up with metrics and KPIs for their CX touchpoints.

Instead, one lamented, “a lot of unused data is still out there” and that the success of customer experience management is still being judged entirely by sales figures.

A word of thanks

Econsultancy would like to thank all of the brand marketers who participated on the day – especially our volunteer table moderators.

We hope you all enjoyed the exchange of ideas and new insights as much as we did – and hope to see you all next year for Digital Cream 2016!