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SiriusDecisions Summit: Inadequate Investment In Content Strategy Hindering Demand Creation

The new technologies and processes being implemented by leading BtoB companies means marketing and sales are more reliant than ever on content. However, in one of the closing keynote sessions at the recent SiriusDecisions Summit, Jay Gaines, Service Director for Demand Creation Strategies at SiriusDecisions, pointed out that most BtoB companies are lacking accountability, strategy and measurement when it comes to content.

“If content is king, then people treat that king pretty badly,” Gaines said during a session titled, Content: The Heart of Effective Demand Creation. Illustrating his point, Gaines conducted a poll of the audience that found 76% of attendees cited content as critical to their demand creation efforts. However, responding to a follow-up question, 41% of attendees said lack of budget and resources or the lack of a content strategy provided significant hurdles to their efforts.

Gaines pointed out that “accountability and a rigorous content approach” is key to increase program effectiveness. He added that the extending menu of content options is also posing a challenge and opportunity for BtoB organizations. “Best-in-class organizations deliver content in more formats to improve SEO, extend reach and meet buyer preferences,” Gaines said.

He added that as more companies move deeper into lead nurturing campaigns and mapping content to the buyer’s journey, it increases “content granularity and complexity.” Gaines added that measurement and a “process-based approach” to content creation and management is critical to success.

In order to better measure and manage their content strategy, Gaines recommended companies create a “content asset architecture.” To better evaluate its content assets, he suggested companies use the following four criteria:

  • Quality
  • Relevance
  • Value
  • Influence

To address the growing need for accountability and measurement, Gaines said some progressive organizations are beginning to appoint a chief content strategist, who has the authority and responsibility to mobilize the resources and show accountability for programs. “Centralized responsibility for content strategy is becoming a requirement for highly effective BtoB organizations,” he said.