Although it’s been around for going on three decades now, digital marketing is still an area of marketing many people are still struggling to understand. Part of the question of “what is digital marketing?” comes from the fact that it wasn’t until recently that digital marketing became an actual field of study at universities and tech schools. Another reason though is that digital marketing, unlike traditional marketing, is much more intangible since it exists only in digital form.
As the saying goes, “you can’t bullshit a bullshitter.”
But it’s also true that you can’t bullshit an expert.
And that’s something you had better keep in mind when you’re talking to your customers. A lot of them are experts, and they know when you’re full of shit.
Any time you’re talking to a customer, whether it be via email, video, social media or <gasp!> in person, you’re talking to someone in their world.
As Black Friday looms near and the holiday shopping season kicks off in earnest, it seems Fender Guitar may be struggling for a spot under the tree for a shiny new guitar. According to a recent article from The Salt Lake Tribune, Fender’s marketing is battling flat sales due to that old foe, competition for mind share.
While people have been saying the guitar is dead for quite a while now, Fender’s fight for relevancy in a modern world full XBoxes and iPhones, a crumbling infrastructure for the arts and music, and a general lack of use and excitement around the guitar in modern music is one that, in my opinion, can still be won. But it’s going to take a lot more work to get there than just standard marketing can do.
I’ve argued for a while now that in order to build a strong brand, you need to encourage behavioral change. Yes, it’s possible to ride along on the waves made by others and sell popular ancillary products, but when you’re in a position like Fender is, where frankly there’s nothing out there in the greater zeitgeist that’s increasing the demand for guitars, you’re fighting an uphill battle.
As I like to say: If you can’t get anyone to do it for you, you might as well do it yourself.
And that’s what Fender and other companies are going to have to realize. It’s part of my Inspire, Aspire, Perspire theory of marketing.
It’s kind of bizarre, isn’t it?
The whole idea of writing an article about writing an article.
Creating valuable content about creating valuable content so I can help others improve their marketing in an attempt to improve my own marketing.
It’s like our own little blog version of Inception.
But that’s what this article is about. It’s about the idea that in order to be seen as valuable today, you have to provide content that people find valuable. Or at least entertaining. (Do I entertain you?)
You see, the very idea of content marketing is to provide content that drives people to your site or business, or at least builds awareness around it. It’s about building a rapport with others. They come in, they read whatever you wrote, or they download your whitepaper, or they watch your video or whatever. You make content, target it to people who are interested in the content, and build engagement.
And if you’ve read this far, I’ve engaged you. If not, you left and that’s okay. You weren’t my target audience.
I go to a LOT of marketing conferences. Most of them are at CMO / VP-level, and deal with some pretty cutting-edge concepts when it comes to brand strategy and adopting to the ever-changing world. This year, the biggest discussions are around Brand Experience – and for many, that means Content Marketing.
At its core, Content Marketing is simply creating content to drive business awareness and leads. Pretty simple, right?
Of course the answer is yes and no. Here’s the issue I’ve been seeing with Content Marketing: A lot of businesses are jumping onto the content marketing bandwagon and producing content, but without consideration of just what the point of it is.
When I was at the GDS CMO Summit in Mexico in October, you might have seen me tweet “Marketing 2016: Let Me Entertain You.” That’s a pretty good summation of what I’m seeing, and for the most part it’s what I see modern marketing turning into – a desperate, unfocused grab for attention through entertainment as a way to get customers through the door.
The problem is, a lot of companies aren’t thinking their strategy through on this. In their excitement and eagerness to stay current, they are forgetting the important question of WHY?.