By Perry Rearick, Chief Editor, Follow Your Buyer
Thought for the Week – Being more intentional with your paid media!
Content marketing lifted companies out of the dark ages and into marketing enlightenment. Long gone are the days when marketers created only complex spec sheets and product brochures.
Now marketing departments are filled with creative story tellers, script writers, and clever videographers. This, of course, is being driven by buyer behavior that seeks to make better purchasing decisions by being better informed.
Marketing collateral is now some of the most interesting and engaging content available, when it gets to the right target audiences. But too often we achieve disappointing results.
That’s when many of us turn to paid media for the answer. Media companies offer a robust menu of services, but it can be confusing: display ads, pay-per-click, custom e-blasts, and editorial inclusions.
When used effectively, the return on investment can be great, but we must be intentional in our media partner selection and in accurately measuring results.
Here are some things to consider.
Do my prospects and buyers use this media company’s products? Media companies should be able to provide specific audience, user, listener, and reader data. But be sure to ask when it was last updated, not just the media kit, but the data.
Why do my prospects and buyers use this media company’s products? The complex buyer doesn’t go from unaware to ready-to-buy by skimming a product directory. They navigate a journey that is weeks and months long, as they set out to solve a problem or build capabilities to improve their businesses. A good media company understands this and will be trying to help them through the journey.
How will the media company help me measure results? This is what separates the amateurs from the professionals. Media companies should be able to tell you who engaged with your content and when they did. Based on the content and the person’s activity across their product set, the media company should also be able to tell you where the person is in their buyer’s journey.
Paid media should not simply be a way to throw some money at updating your prospect list. Look at it as a critical component of your content distribution plan.