Hey everybody, it’s Jenni from GrowthMode Marketing. You are listening to The Demand Gen Fix the podcast where our team of GrowthModers and our guests discuss the ins and outs of demand generation and why we believe it’s the key to long-term sustainable growth, especially in HR tech industry.
Hey everybody. Welcome back to the Demand Gen Fix podcast. This is episode six. I’m Jenni Geiser from GrowthMode Marketing, and I’m here with Erica Rhodes and Deanna Shimota again. This episode we’re going to be talking about how to get more mileage out of your content by slicing and dicing. It’s called the multiplier effect. You may feel like you don’t have a ton of content, but in actuality, you can use what content you have and grow it by slicing and dicing and putting it out there in chunks. Basically, a common marketing challenge is that you don’t feel like your content library is big enough. We’re going to discuss that and talk about how you can utilize what you have to make it seem like more than it really is.
Content obviously is a very critical component to building a strong demand generation engine. The challenge is it takes a lot of work to build out a large content library. I’ve talked to companies out there in the HR tech space who have actually said, I get the need for content. We don’t have the time, the energy, the budget to create this comprehensive library. It’s a real challenge. When you’re looking at your marketing programs and how you’re building awareness for your company, you don’t just need content. You also need to make sure that you have a lot of digital content and you know why you need to build out your digital content footprint. According to Gartner research, 72% of B2B buyers prefer a rep free experience. So the question becomes how are they going to find you if they’re not willing to have a conversation with you? And that’s where that digital footprint, i.e. content really becomes critical to the success of your business.
Right? I think it’s important that to reiterate what Deanna said. Building out a demand gen engine, if you don’t have content and you don’t have a content plan and strategy in place, it becomes very difficult to build out a demand gen strategy or a long-term successful program. That’s typically what we would start with, is thinking about the content. So we’re going to look at content, what we have to work with, and then obviously starting to fill the gaps. So we’re also moving to an era where 80% or greater of the interactions with a B2B company are done online and people are expecting this. So again, just reiterating the fact that your digital footprint needs to be your best salesperson. You need to have and build this digital footprint in this online presence in order to allow your prospects to do that research online and to have those interactions with your company and start to get to know you and your brand prior to actually making contact with the salesperson. So again, reiterating the fact that that digital footprint needs to be your biggest salesperson, and in order to have that digital footprint, it all comes back to content and the content you have and the content that you need, and really filling those gaps to make sure that you have a cohesive experience for your prospects and buyers online.
Yeah, and I think you need to take a look at it and say, okay, if my digital footprint needs to be my best salesperson, are you there today? And if you can’t resoundingly say yes, then you’ve got work to do. I’m building that out, and it’s not a one-time exercise. You need to constantly feed the engine and create new content and put it out there on the web. And that’s where it goes back to that common marketing challenge. It takes a lot of work to build a content library, and that’s where when we talk about the multiplier effect, we’re looking at ways, how do you make that content work harder for you and go longer without having to create new pieces over and over and over. I also think from a content perspective, something to consider if you go and create a really good content piece, like let’s say your organization works with Gartner and has them produce with you a really nice research report for your prospects, don’t just create that, throw it in some campaigns and then let it collect dust. Not everybody wants to read that 15 page report. There’s a lot you can do with that information though to really get a lot more mileage out of it.
And on that same vein, a research report, or even if you write a blog, if your company has a blog, you don’t have to just put out that entire article one time and that’s that. You can take pieces of that and reutilize the pieces as small little snippets in other places to reach your audience. And who knows maybe that snippet will get them to go back to your blog and then it’ll be a lot more useful for you because then they’re coming back to your website. You’re gaining traction that way. You don’t have to just put something out there one time and leave it be.
Right. It’s all about building your digital footprint faster and bigger. And that’s content and really an approach where we call it slice and dice. Some people will call it sweating the content, but being able to really build out a content library without reinventing the wheel every time.
I think something to think about as far as putting in the effort to slice and dice a piece of content that’s really, really good. It’s a pillar piece. It’s something that you feel really captures, like Deanna’s example with the gardener report. What can you do with that piece to eliminate the need to recreate that wheel? So if you’re creating content and using subject matter experts, maybe you’re pulling in customers or clients to come in and do a case study, all of that effort is put into that large piece of content. I think it’s important to continue to remind yourself of, well, let’s not recreate the wheel. Think about the resource you’ve already put into that piece and how simple it could be to slice and dice and really leverage some of the meat that’s in that piece in other ways. And really continue to drive people back to that larger piece of content or those larger ideas. But it’s really important just to think about those ways that you can lift and shift some of those pieces into other formats and topics.
So we have these terms called the cornerstone content and the cobblestone content. So the cornerstone content would be the big major piece of content, correct?
Yeah, I think it’s a major piece of content. Think of it as a pillar piece, it’s the big rock and then the cobblestones are how do you chip off little pieces off of it. Sometimes it’s not necessarily one piece that becomes your cornerstone content. It could also be a series of stuff that’s a specific tactic. So for example, a podcast, you could look at that and okay, you’re doing a podcast series, you’re creating several pieces of content, but then you’re able to create a lot of pieces of content cascading from that podcast. I think you could also look at some organizations have somebody prominent in their organization write a book or do research. It could be webinars, it could be an article series. The point is holistically, it’s a heavy lift, big ticket item that then you look at and you say, okay, how can we slice and dice this and put this information more of a drip in front of people? Because the reality is, a lot of people have short attention spans. People consume content in different ways. Not everybody’s going to read your book, not everyone’s going to watch your podcast or your webinar or read your research report. Those that will, great, continue to put that in front of them. But by creating other content out of that, you’re finding ways to still piece feed them the information over time versus requiring everybody to look at those larger pieces of content.
So what are some examples of the cobblestones that you can chip off of that major piece?
Some of the examples I would think of for cobblestone pieces would be, for instance, if that cornerstone piece is a research article. Looking at things within those same topics and starting to create other assets. So maybe that’s chunking some of the topic out into video clips. Or looking at ways to really highlight some of that research in social media posts, graphics. Or maybe it’s an infographic that highlights something within that research that you think would really resonate with the audience and ultimately something that’s going to get their attention in order to drive them back to that larger piece of content or those larger topics. Audio clips are something that you could consider. Other articles. I think a lot of times something that may get overlooked is looking at a 15 page research report that people may or may not be able to spend the time consuming. Can we create other pieces based on that information? Can we take some of that research and start to produce other blog articles based on some of that information and repurpose those pieces? Maybe that’s research topics. We can then take those blog pieces and rather than just blasting out an email to our database about, Hey, we have this new blog and maybe posting it on social. We’re then taking that piece of cobblestone content, that blog post, and we’re able to even continue to multiply that into other aspects as well
Into more bite sized pieces. Right? I mean, smaller. Easy to consume, for when people have the time. Kind of put the main content out there almost like an outline.
Yeah. It’s not that every piece is bite size. I think it’s looking at it and saying, okay, I’m going to take this content piece that I have and I’m going to create more content that’s going to be spun off of it. So it’s going to be the same topic, but it’s repackaged. Maybe it’s a different format. It can absolutely be bite sized. And I think, when you do bite sized content, you can get creative with how you’re doing it. Social media is a great example of where you can do that. It’s not just, okay, we did this webinar, we’re going to create a few social posts from the webinar. Even the way that the content is presented on social media could be different. You could do a straight out post, you could do quotes that people said during the webinar, you could do a carousel if you were on LinkedIn with the five key takeaways from the webinar. You could do audio or video clips from the recorded webinar. You could do infographic or meme style images on there. There’s a lot of ways to think about how do we repackage that content. And it doesn’t have to be, here’s everything that was in the report.
You can repurpose things from the report and have some more meaningful pieces that spin off of it, but you can also multiply the touches and the opportunities to get in front of people with these bite size pieces of content that. Okay, I’m not going to read your 15 page Gartner research report, even though there’s some really good content in it, but over eight weeks you were putting little nuggets from that report in there and I was consuming it over that time. I just got to see all of the key points that were in that report. And so it didn’t have to be consumed all at once. We traditionally think this report’s really good, let’s make sure we’re getting it out there and letting people absorb that information in the way that works best for them.
I feel like a lot of people these days don’t have the time or the patience to sit down and read a whole report, but if you’re getting it out there to them, all the information, just in a different way. Some people are more apt to watch a video, some people are more apt to listen to a podcast or an audio clip, some people are more apt to just look at a stat and go on from there. But eventually you’re getting probably 10 pieces of content out of that one thing or more, depending on how much you can slice and dice it. You’re getting a lot of different content pieces out of that one big pillar piece.
For sure. In a recent Gartner statistic, it takes on average 66 touches for a B2B buyer to actually engage with sales. So think about it from that perspective. If I’ve got this really meaningful, solid information that I want get out there, how can you break it into 66 pieces? Knee-jerk reaction may be, okay, that’s ridiculous. We’re not going to get 66 pieces of content out of this. But you’d be surprised with the multiplier how much content you can actually get out of something. Whether you call it slice and dice or sweating the content, the point is to get that maximum mileage out of that piece.
I think it all comes down to the idea of just creating consumable content. So put yourself in their shoes and look at yourself as a prospect and what ways would you want to consume that information that’s within that report? What ways are going to help you start to consume that information? And honestly, that comes down to those more bite sized pieces, digestible pieces, for your audience.
I talked about getting 66 pieces of content out of one. Let’s walk people through an example of how you slice and dice a piece of content to really get a lot of mileage out of it. Let’s assume we’re an employee benefits platform and we have just created a four-part webinar series that really deep dives into one topic. What do you do with that?
So one thing I would think about in that situation is four different topics from your webinar and could you create something like an ebook out of that? So can you take key points from those four webinars and create a summary within that ebook of those different topics and key points from that. So you’re not overwhelming them with pages and pages of transcription from your webinars, but you’re pulling out those key points and creating an overview or a summary within an ebook for your audience.
And then as a designer, of course, the first thing I think of is infographics. You can take all that, those four points and make them each into their own infographic. And that’s four pieces of content right there.
Yep. And you could create verticals from each of those webinars. And then let’s say you take five social posts of key points from each webinar. Again, there’s four webinars. And let’s say you take three 30 second video clips of key points from each webinar, four webinars. So if you do the math on the example that we just gave. Okay, you’re doing a four part webinar series, so you’ve got four webinar recordings. You create one ebook out of it, you create four infographics, one for each of the webinars. You create four articles, one for each of the webinars. You create five social posts for each of the webinars, times four, so that’s 20 social posts. Then three 30 second video clips from each webinar. Times four is 12 video clips. So from that four part webinar series, you’ve now created 45 content pieces. When you were originally going in, it was four webinar recordings. Now with 45 pieces, you’ve probably got two to three months worth of content to put in front of people to continuously try to get the key points from those cornerstone content pieces that you created out in front of them.
I think as marketers, it’s also something you’re always thinking about is, or you should be, is how can I get the most mileage out of these webinars? So somebody came in, requested, we do these webinars or this idea came up that we’re going to do this four part webinar series. What can I do to make sure that the time and effort spent into creating those webinars is going to get the most mileage? And we’re going to get the most eyes on that. We’re going to get people’s attention and be able to drive them back to the recording in a number of ways so that you don’t look back and think, great, we did a webinar but attendance was okay and that’s it. It ended, we did those webinars live and we did nothing with it after that. I think that’s something that as a marketer, if you’re not thinking about that, you should be.
Yeah, those are great points. And I think you could think of the content as creating this infinite loop of, okay, they looked at the recording, where can I send them next to reiterate this message? Okay, they watched the video clips, I can send them back to the webinar recording. I can send them to the infographic. I can send them to the ebook. There’s all these different ways that you can continue to try to push the content in front of them because you know, quite frankly, if you create these 45 pieces and nobody sees them, it’s a total waste of your time. And so, what you also have to consider as you build all this out is the plan for how are we going to get that content out there? You’ve just created 45 pieces. We’ve talked about social media, that’s an obvious place to throw this out there and get it in front of people. But what about sponsored posts, digital ads, email campaigns? The list goes on and on on the opportunity to take this content and really push it out there, get it out there, make it findable, and get a lot of leverage out of it.
I think that’s a really good point, Deanna. And going back to the idea of being able to look at what types of content has resonated with certain prospects. I can tell you one thing, your sales team would love to have the information in front of them as far as what prospects have looked at. I think that’s something that as marketers, we build this engine so that we can provide that kind of insight to our sales team using marketing automation platforms and tools to really be able to show what people are consuming. And not only are you providing your sales team with that information to hand these prospects off, but you’re also able to look back as a marketer and determine what’s working and what’s not. I think that’s something we don’t want to forget about either, is looking at that insight to determine, okay, well gee, maybe the articles weren’t as powerful as we thought they were going to be, but the e-book really performed well and those infographics really got people’s attention and drove a lot of traffic back to the recordings. All just some things to think about there. And in turn how you can close the loop here and by slicing and dicing the content, you can really start to create a better experience for your prospects or buyers in the long run.
And then rather than just having one piece of content, you have all of these pieces of content, which means more people consuming it. Which means more eyes on it and just a reinforcement of your key messages across a huge platform instead of just one.
There’s many benefits to doing the slice and dice method. I think more content naturally, if you’re getting it out there in front of people, it’s going to equal more consumption. You want people to read that content. So this is a really good thing. I think it continually reinforces key messages. People often need to hear things multiple times before they really absorb it and it sticks with them. You’re continually staying in front of prospects and building a following if you’re doing this well. And let’s not forget, the more content you’re getting out there to build your digital footprint around these really key topics for your organization, the more SEO benefits that you get from it, which ultimately leads to more people coming to your website and hopefully more people buying from you.
So I think the key takeaway here today is that you definitely should be getting more mileage out of your marketing efforts. Expand your content. Leverage by creating cornerstone content that can be sliced and diced into many content pieces to continually reinforce your key messages. Thanks for joining us on The Demand Gen Fix, a podcast for HR tech marketers brought to you by GrowthMode Marketing. We sure hope you enjoyed it. Don’t forget to subscribe for more perspectives on demand generation and B2B marketing strategies. Plus give us a like, tell your friends, we’ll see you next time.