The Content Marketing Shift: Selling is not on your terms any more

The Content Marketing Shift: Selling is not on your terms any more
July 11, 2011

Over the years, B2B marketing and sales has undergone some major changes.  It used to be that marketing would run programs to generate leads, qualify them, and then toss them over the wall to a sales rep who would then try to take prospects through numerous steps in a sales process.  There was also a time when prospects couldn’t get much information about a company’s products and services without talking to a rep.  Sales controlled the flow of information and hence controlled the process, and often the best reps were the ones who could keep the most information in their heads! 

Of course, the internet and – in recent years – blogs and social media have changed all that.

Prospects do as much homework as they can before ever getting engaged with sales…if at all.  They gather information from the company’s website, third-party sites and publications, blogs, forums, reviews, etc.  And so the job of marketing has changed dramatically.  Marketing needs to produce (and encourage others to produce) more content – lots of it – and distribute it widely online.  The old axiom “quality over quantity” is legitimately under fire. 

Meanwhile, your content cannot be traditional product literature. It has to be truly useful, value-add information in the form of videos, white papers, webinars, and articles that inform and educate prospects.  Most marketing organizations are having a hard time keeping up with these content demands, as depicted in the following chart from Content Marketing Institute.

I’ve been really impressed by the way CMI is staying on top of this shift taking place in marketing and sales.  Check them out, and be sure to subscribe to their blog (they have lots of good content, as you’d expect). 

While Brainshark can’t address all of the content challenges marketers are facing, our solution and the professional services we offer can help in a big way. We focus, of course, on easy video content production and distribution and enabling business people to measure the effectiveness of their video-based communications. 

Video is the medium of choice for more and more website visitors these days.  (Did you know that YouTube is the 2nd biggest search engine following Google? Think about that for a second…) The bottom line is that you need to make sure you incorporate ample use of video in your marketing efforts these days, so your prospects can consume the content you want them to consume when they are ready to come looking for it.