The role content is playing in your customer experience

29 November 2016

Forbes Insights and Deloitte have published a new report that investigates how the C-suite consume business content.

The report aims to counter the perception that brevity is king in the age of social media – though that perception is something we’ve long contested when it comes to the C-suite, supported by our experiences partnering with global brands on lead generation and content marketing programmes.

300 C-level executives were surveyed for this latest Forbes and Deloitte research, and two key findings jumped out that we wholeheartedly agree with.

Always Listen and Learn
Now, more than ever, it's essential for brands to listen to customers across all media channels. There is a growing expectation that good customer experience should feel effortless and personalized. Personalization, which boosts relevancy, is a prerequisite for catching customers' attention and making them feel that you care about their needs. Social listening can give real-time access to what your audience is talking about, sharing, and consuming. This allows marketers and content strategists to better craft high-quality, customer-centric content more effectively.

We All Have to Work Together
How important is customer experience in your company? Are you making great strides to personalize your content and address customers' biggest frustrations? Do you have a customer-first culture? Many companies are still working in silos and are not structured to interact and discuss the main issue - the customer. Some marketers are solely focused on selling programs or products. They're developing content without the end user in mind. Teams must learn to unite and execute programs based on customer experiences through all aspects of their marketing, including creative, social, email, and content creation. For example, marketing and customer support teams should be aligned because both sides can learn quite a bit from one another. If there's a collaboration on customer issues, marketers can proactively produce content to address customer needs. The benefits of integrating efforts can transform regular customers into proud customer advocates.

Look at All Content Channels Whether Online or Offline 
Content is all around us and plays a significant part in purchasing decisions. Building a community online and offline of useful content requires patience and understanding. But those brands that embrace this approach are better equipped to provide meaningful, relevant information to their audiences where and when they need it. Companies can be more effective if they understand how, when, and where people want to engage. There is an opportunity to build strong relationships through all channels if we understand the impact on the user experience. Can they find what they are looking for? Is it convenient? What's their mobile and online experience? Answering these questions can be a strategic asset that is essential to business success.

Keep it Fresh 
Continuing to keep your content current, relevant, and informative will lead to a steady distribution of content that resonates. Doing so can nurture a community of people who follow your content updates and regularly engage. A helpful tactic is to conceptualize your website and social media as something to be "experienced." Your content should answer the basic question "Am I giving customers details they need to make a purchasing decision?" Providing consistent and compelling content will help to build awareness and create preference for your brand.

The more brands understand the value of customer-centric content and the need to dedicate time, effort, and resources to creating it, the better they will be at exceeding customer expectation and gaining a competitive advantage.