5 Strategies To Break Your Bad Marketing Habits

Stop creating confusing and useless content and transform your marketing messages into something that's actually useful.

In marketing as in life, simply breaking your bad habits isn't enough. You have to replace your former ineffective habits with new, more productive ones.

Here’s how:

1. Set your intentions for creating the content.

Kathy Meara, Content Marketing Manager for CA Technologies, is very clear about the purpose of CA's webcasts. "Today, our webcasts are intended to accomplish three things: Align with our customers’ initiatives, educate them on the newest technology, and introduce them to IT thought leaders." Decide what you intentions are and set them clearly. For example, if you want to create an emotional connection and awareness, decide how you are going to educate your audience. If you want to move existing buyers through the pipeline, demonstrate how your other customers achieved positive business outcomes.

2. Set clear expectations with your customers.

Stick to the basics of learning: We are goal oriented, we want to be able to show our own breadth of experiences, we want to see relevancy, and we are self-directed. I see a lot of reckless presentations. I just attended a marketing conference where "seasoned" marketing guest speakers distracted me from their messages. Their slides were designed poorly with very small fonts, too many bullet points, no clear agenda, and no stated takeaways for the audience.

3. Establish clear measures of success.

Bonnie Thomas, manager of content for Lithium, evaluated the cost per lead from content syndication versus webcasts. She found that webcast leads can be as little as 15% the cost of other lead-generation programs like content syndication. "For Lithium, webcasts continue to provide the lowest cost per acquisition and the highest level of engagement."

4. Make your content evergreen.

When you do events like webinars, design them so they can be downloaded for several months after the live event has ended. Kathy Meara of CA Technologies says, "I personally register for many webinars and only participate in 10%. This is mostly due to schedule conflicts. Our customers are the same. They see the free webcasts, they crave the information, and they love that they don’t need management approval to attend. They also value greatly the on-demand feature provided by the ON24 platform we use."

5. Look for inspiration in disparate industries.

Take inspiration from Breaking Bad’s Vince Gilligan for your content strategy. Gilligan shared this in an interview with the Huffington Post: "I think part of entertainment is making people think. It should keep people wondering, it should keep people contemplating. I don't want to make the kind of entertainment where people instantly forget what they just watched as they tune into the next show." The same philosophy applies to hosting memorable events and content.

These five strategies will help you avoid bad content chemistry and make your customers your biggest fans.

Related Articles:

"The Cure For Content-Creation Madness"
"Cash, Lies, And ROI: Are Your Marketing Budgets A Flight Risk?"

[Image: Flickr user Steven Bratman]

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