The art of storytelling has been important for humans since the dawn of time. Some of the earliest examples of humans communicating via text can be found in caves and in the pyramids. And yes, it’s still important today. It might seem a little obvious to say why we are doing all of this, but sometimes the obvious has to be pointed out. We are telling our story in an effort to drive marketing and increase sales.
“Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell”Seth Godin
Recently I sat down with client, who’s done all the right things:
- They’ve figured out their brand positioning
- Have expanded and refined their target personas
- Defined the language and tone of voice to talk with their customer
Despite all of this they still weren’t hitting their sales goals.
Content marketing collateral
We took a closer look at what they were working with, they had an extensive collection of collateral for potential sales leads, including:
- Case studies
- Cold emails
- Nurture emails
- Website copy
- Presentation decks
- and a lot more
Clearly they have a lot of marketing material on hand. Possibly everything their potential customers could ever want to read. So they could take it easy with respect to content creation right? Well the answer to this isn’t as straight forward as you think. Getting the above catalogue of content together did take a non-insignificant amount of time & resources, but this list is really the starting point. There are other ways that your customer facing team members (marketing & sales staff) interact with potential customers. Do you have call & demo scripts and are you continuing to engage your customers with regular content?
When I sat down with the CEO, to try to understand where there were gaps with the content and why sales wasn’t humming as it should. He said they were very careful with the content on the website, as well as what is sent in marketing emails. But he had failed to think about the other ways that their brand messaging was being delivered.
We had a strong feeling that call scripts and demo scripts varied widely between teams in different cities. Some team were better at selling newer products than others. Thankfully they had video recordings of over 150 meetings in the last 2-3 months from their teams. We took the videos, had them transcribed, and formed word clouds.
Quick tip : Word Clouds
We use https://www.wordclouds.com/ on a regular basis, you can upload your content, and it will create beautiful graphics likes this.
We saw that the different teams indeed had different messaging. Some where using old pitch decks and out-dated messaging (and even pricing!). Another further issue was that there wasn’t any new material being produced, and the sales team wasn’t expecting to have regular new collateral to share with prospects.
Consistent brand messaging
We talked about how their sales team were interacting with content on LinkedIn. The CEO didn’t have the slightest idea what his sales team was doing, if anything, he said he didn’t remember seeing any of their own content being shared by the sales staff. Many of his sales staff had upwards of 2,000 industry connections on LinkedIn, but they barely interacted with social platform about the company they worked for, despite having relevant and compelling content to share with their connections (and soon newer content).
Our suggested solution was to get teams from Sales, Marketing, executives and anyone else who wanted to help to join a new Slack channel specifically for content promotion. Content promotion isn’t just getting your team to like / thumbs up a piece of content, we knew we needed more. We needed to coordinate sharing on these social media platforms (think LinkedIn Groups, LinkedIn Profiles & Posts, Twitter, etc.). As members started to get ‘better’ at sharing, liking and commenting, we also saw another team benefits. These team members were now more familiar with the up-to-date brand messaging and latest key selling points.
Note: This type of engagement isn’t typical for copywriters.ie, we generally are asked to deliver top quality content for your blog every week. That being said, sometimes having an external review of your content from can be useful. If you’d like to have someone look at your content marketing strategy, let us know !