Content, content, everywhere, nor any to send to prospects. So goes the Rime of the Ancient Seller, or something like that. It’s not hard to see the parallels between the ill-fated mariner in Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s epic poem and today’s sellers. The mariner, surrounded on all sides by ocean, laments his inability to drink any of the salty water. Sellers are awash in content and similarly unable to partake due to the high salinity. Wait, that’s not right. No, they’re unable to partake simply because there’s too much content!
For many years we’ve all been bombarded with the message that the more content the better. SiriusDecisions has found that enterprise organizations spend on average $17.5 million a year for content creation. Just bombard Sales with content and they’ll pick out the best pieces that fit the selling situations they find themselves in. This of course, is categorically incorrect, but hey people have been categorically wrong about plenty of things in the past. People thought the Earth was flat for a really long time! Some people even still do!
So if just opening the content firehose isn’t the answer, then what is? Here at Seismic we’ve discovered a sort of universal truth when it comes to an organization’s content. You might not like this. But too bad it’s the truth and it’s time to take your medicine. We’ve discovered that around 95% of content is used infrequently and only 5% is used at a high frequency. Hopefully that didn’t send you reeling like Redd Foxx, but it most likely came as a shock to your system.
That statistic shouldn’t be seen as a repudiation on the great materials that marketers create. It should be thought of as an enlightenment towards a new era of content creation and management. Here are two best practices for content management.
Doing More With Less
Using the above example, one of the best practices you can follow with your content management is to focus on only creating content that Sales truly loves and needs. Why? Well aren’t you a smart aleck all of a sudden with your pointed questions. I’ll tell you why. Because SiriusDecisions has found that two-thirds of collateral Marketing creates goes unused by sellers. Consider that in tandem with what Seismic has found in terms of the frequency of content usage and you should see why it’s important to carefully consider your content creation when it comes to content management.
The best way to manage your content is to ensure that every piece is vital. The best way to do that? By having marketers actually speak with sellers about their wants and needs. When Marketing and Sales are on the same page, then great content is created.
An even better way of determining the kinds of content that should be created and highlighted is to leverage content analytics. Content analytics allows marketers to see what content is used most, what content drives the most engagement, and what content actually results in closed deals. Content analytics is an incredibly powerful tool that will help you improve your content management efforts.
You’re going to want to make sure you stuff your content after its expiration date so it can hang around and creep you out. Oh, taxonomy not taxidermy. Content taxidermy is a whole different blog. What we’re talking about here is the way you structure your content folders. Because how people are finding and accessing the content is nearly important as the makeup of the content itself.
Place yourself in the shoes of a seller. Probably a nice loafer, or perhaps an oxford. A seller has one thing on their mind: closing a deal. They don’t have all day to be searching for content that they need to send to a buyer right now. Being able to quickly access content is paramount for enabling sellers to use the content that Marketing spends hours creating.
Now enter the shoes of a marketer. Maybe a chukka boot, or even a casual sneaker. Maintaining a library of content for an enterprise organization is no easy task. Content is constantly being created, updated, and deleted. Being unable to navigate a complicated web of folders or disparate systems makes that task infinitely harder.
Your content’s taxonomy needs to have a natural flow that allows all possible users to easily navigate and find what they’re looking for. When considering the taxonomy structure for your content think about the following:
- User roles
- Content types
- Internal/external content
- Stage of the buyer’s journey
Every organization structure will be different based on individual needs, but it’s important to consider all of those categories when you plan out your taxonomy.