The nature of marketing has changed drastically over the past decade thanks to the leaps and bounds that technology has taken in such a short time.
Paid SERP results and banner ads have dominated the playing field, raking in money for Google, as well as for the businesses that Google helps market their products and services. For a time, it was an outbound marketer’s dream come true.
However, with the growing use of ad blockers, smarter internet users, and steep competition, it seems that outbound marketing is on its way… well, out.
As a sort of natural evolution to this changing marketing landscape, many marketers have adopted the strategy of inbound marketing.
What Is Dynamic Smart Marketing?
Instead of traditional outbound techniques where companies try to get their brand as much exposure as possible in order to find new customers, inbound marketing campaigns earn their leads’ attention by making relevant, easy-to-find, and value-adding.
Image from artillerymarketing.com
A big part of inbound marketing is the content you use to sell your products or services. This approach --appropriately called content marketing - is all about publishing content for your potential leads to study or enjoy.
It follows a methodology that looks like this:
● Attract traffic through organic search results to your web page.
● Educate your potential leads on what your business can do for them.
● Convert your leads by using CTAs and relevant offers.
● Nurture your market-qualified leads into becoming customers, and
● Delight after the fact to make customers more loyal to your brand.
Naturally, you can’t just stick all the pieces of content designed to do all these different things onto one web page. What you need is more dynamic content strategy that adapts to the needs of your customers at the right moment.
An effective content marketing campaign needs to take context into account.
In other words, if you want your campaign to be efficient and successful, you need to make sure that the content you’re showing is relevant to your target market and where they are along your buyer journey.
In order to run a create content marketing campaign, you’re going to need cold, hard data on your side. Making excellent content is only half of the game - if you want to succeed, you need a good, data-driven content marketing strategy to back your plays.
Creating a dynamic smart content framework like that is a cycle of data analysis that follows these eight steps:
Step 1 - Plan
Before you can set about implementing your dynamic content, you need to set a plan and figure some things out.
Look at the data you’ve already acquired from your marketing campaigns. If you want to provide your potential customers with contextually relevant data, then you need to analyze your past customers: do they abandon their shopping carts before purchasing? How many visits to your site did it take for them to convert?
Based on the behavior you see, you can see trends in what they did with your business and relegate them into different targeted groups. This is called data segmentation, and it matters.
Once you’ve figured out who you should be marketing to, you’ll be able to figure out what your framework needs in order to drive more conversions.
Step 2 - Craft a Buyer Persona
Image from hubspot.com
Having a buyer persona is an integral part of content marketing. How else are you going to create a helpful, dynamic content strategy that’s relevant to your customers if you can’t paint a clear mental picture of who they are, and how they think?
You may already have your ideal customer in your head, but it’s best to concretize it into a hypothetical ideal customer - the “buyer persona”-- so that your entire campaign is on the same page.
The best way to build a buyer persona is by looking at your own customers. Pick out who you serve the most, their age group, occupation, and any other relevant information you can glean. It’s even better if you can get information first-hand, such as what attracted them to your product and how they use it.
Step 3 - Map Your Buyer’s Journey
The process that a customer goes through when making a decision to buy is called the buyer's journey, and it consists of three main stages: awareness, consideration, and decision.
First, the buyer is made aware that there’s a problem and they need something.
Then they consider the options they have in order to resolve this problem.
Then, once they’ve evaluated their options, they make a decision.
Image from hubspot.com
Understanding the buyer’s journey and how it applies to your marketing campaign is an integral part of your dynamic content framework, since it provides the all-important context you need in order to run an effective content marketing campaign.
Step 4 - Contextualize
When I say relevant content, I don’t just mean content that’s relevant to your buyer persona and your targeted groups, I mean content that’s contextually relevant to your customers at a specific point in their journey.
Remember, inbound marketing is all about earning a customer’s attention and trust and helping them solve a problem they have. If you rush them to the decision stage by asking them to make a purchase on the first encounter, then you risk being seen as pushy and losing your potential lead.
You want your content to guide your leads along their journey, showing them why your product is the right one for them before inviting them to commit to anything. Having a strong content map is very important for your dynamic content strategy.
Image from webfx.com
Step 5 - Create Strong Content
As advantageous as data-driven marketing is, you shouldn’t forget that content marketing is primarily content-driven. Choosing the right content should come primarily down to what your brand is, who you’re marketing to, and, yes, the context of where they are in their journey.
Each type of content has its own pros and cons, as well as where they’d be best positioned in the buyer’s journey.
Blog articles are a classic form of marketing content, though according to Yum Yum Videos, video content is fast becoming very popular in the marketing sphere. You can use both of these anywhere during the buyer’s journey.
Content like testimonials are best positioned for the buyer in the awareness stage to build trust and awareness for your brand, while case studies are better suited to be shown to people who are farther along in their journey, as they offer more in-depth looks at what your company does.
Imagination is your limit when it comes to creating content that’s relevant to your customer’s needs. Having good content could be a make or break your hard-fought attempts to drive conversions, so whether you deploy articles, videos, ebooks, or interactive content, make it count!
Step 6 - Deploy in the Relevant Channels
We no longer live in an age where putting your ad in the newspaper and on flyers and hoping for the best is an effective marketing strategy. Ad targeting has now become so sophisticated that you can have your ads be shown to very specific groups of people, minimizing the amount of ad spend you waste.
Do your customers hang out on social media? Do most of your leads come in from Google? Optimizing your website for search engine optimization, investing in PPC and spending on Facebook ads are great ways to attract customers in the awareness and consideration stages, depending on what platforms work best for your business.
If potential leads have left your site, then investing in RLSA and display retargeting campaigns could help them continue along their journey with you and drive conversions.
Remember, it’s all about context and where your leads are along their journeys.
Step 7 - Craft Converting CTAs
Image from netflix.com
Calls-to-action and conversions don’t necessarily have connect your customers to a sales page. Depending on which stage they’re on, a well-placed CTA drive your leads further down the sales funnel through the use of lead magnets and similar “hooks”.
Just like everything else in a dynamic content framework, designing different landing pages and CTAs for potential buyers that are on different parts of their journey creates relevant and helpful pages that your potential leads love, whether it be downloading an ebook to guide the buyer into the evaluation stage, or offering a free trial of your software to help push someone into the decision stage.
Step 8 - Analyze and Optimize
Once you’ve done steps one through seven, the final step is to put your dynamic smart content framework in place… and wait and see what happens.
See, as the name implies, a dynamic content framework is always changing. It’s never perfect, and it needs to constantly improve itself.
As the new customers pour in, you’ll be collecting more data from them, whether the content is relevant to different stages of the buyer’s journey, whether more targeted groups arise or whether or not the channel you chose to advertise on was a good fit for you or not.
Once you have enough data, you begin anew, analyzing it and building upon your dynamic content framework once more. If you do everything right, you’ll only see your sales and conversion numbers go up and up as you improve your marketing strategies.
A dynamic smart content framework is a long-term investment, but it ultimately pays off. Web marketing is increasingly becoming more and more personalized as public perception of traditional outbound marketing tactics becomes more negative over time. People react more to their problems being taken care of, to get content that helps them solve the problems and make decisions in their life.
This article should show you that above all, natural, organic content with the context of the buyer’s mindset in mind is an essential part of any content marketing strategy.