I’ve started the year with the same commercial mindset I had back in 2005.
Back then, over 17,000 kilometres away in Dublin, I was entering the same world I am in now; independent startup challenger agency land. And it’s making me feel a decade younger, and somewhat smarter, since the rules seem to be as relevant now as they were back then – thankfully!
Over the Christmas break I had a chance to look back on the rollercoaster first three months of my new role at King Content in Melbourne, and concluded this new job is making me feel as young and energised as I was in Dublin over a decade ago, when I risked it all by setting up my own independent communications agency. Back in 2005 as the Celtic tiger roared, I acted on my hunch that clients wanted fresh, bold and irreverent ways to connect with their audiences, rather than ways to simply create advertising campaigns targeting audiences offered by the vanilla stream of global network agencies.
Saor, like its Gaelic translation, offered ‘free/neutral’-thinking communication solutions to engage with customers. My hunch was right, as energy drinks, supers, hair gels, soaps, banks and multiple other customers signed up. All were aligned with my view on the new rules of engagement, which focused on knowing what your audience really wanted to read or experience on an ongoing basis, rather than simply creating individual campaigns advertising a brand or product to them. This communication with – not campaign advertising to – is as relevant today as it was back then. Everything we do at King Content is about unearthing what audiences are really interested in and providing that content to them on an ongoing basis on many platforms, to ensure brand engagement is returned at optimal levels.
This new world, with old rules, is as fast living, bold, brave and boisterous as those heady Celtic years where everything was up for grabs.
Today every CMO I work with wants something new and unique which can engage their audiences with their brands. A lot of the energy is driven from the ongoing assault CMOs are experiencing from disruption in their brand worlds. CMOs are questioning their traditional offline and online approaches to their marketing activities, now that they know campaign advertising to their audiences is no longer delivering the engagement to drive trial, purchase and repeat purchases. A few years ago content marketing was heralded as a must-have silver bullet to halt falling market shares and product sales. It certainly delivered a more engaged audience relationship, but consumers have since become exhausted as multiple brands have fought for engagement, friendship and loyalty.
So these days in every conversation with new CMO customers I find myself using my same old 2005 philosophy and vocabulary to showcase how award-winning content marketing and ongoing communication solutions have delivered huge rewards, way beyond any campaign advertising ROI. At King our conversation acknowledges that all advertising is content, but all content is not advertising.
This is the reason why a brand’s content really matters, as content can reach the places advertising cannot. The brands that get this right – the sweet spot of connecting brands with content which audiences are passionate about – get duly rewarded. The content sweet spot isn’t discovered by chance –the only way to cut through the clutter of content and advertising assaulting audiences’ intelligence is through detailed audits. Without auditing your audience’s world it’s impossible to create a strategic approach to your content and its connection with your audience. Research from the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) has revealed that 66 per cent of content marketers with a documented strategy consider their content marketing effective.
So if you are one of the 84 per cent of Australian marketers who think their 2016 top priority is to create more engaging content (CMI), you’ll not go far wrong with a conversation with King Content – softly spoken double negatives in an Australian Irish tone!