How media convergence can help B2B tech firms to overcome one of the major challenges in B2B marketing: Attracting and engaging preoccupied buyers in a loud online world.
The three distinct, yet overlapping spheres that make up the realm of digital media: Owned media (publications where your firm calls the editorial shots) paid media (paying a website, influencer, channel or publication for the opportunity the display your content to their audience), and earned media (audience-generated content that shares your brand message).
Create Your Own Converged Media Strategy
Time to get practical! To help you to get started, today’s post takes you through a three-stage process you can follow to create a media convergence strategy that capitalises on your strengths and the high-value opportunities waiting to be noticed. Ready to get practical?
Stage 1: Analyse Available Resources
Analyse your team members’ strengths and core competencies in the field of content creation. Do you have any budding bloggers or social media influencers on board? Does your marketing team have any experience of executing paid advertising campaigns? Perhaps you have contact or favour with a thought leader or an industry publication.
Initiate a content audit to discover and table the content resources and media channels at your disposal and analyse the results that each of these assets have delivered. Gather high-value assets into a folder marked for repurposing and make a note of content and channels that are missing from your portfolio.
Analyse your industry’s media channels for untapped potential. Are there any upcoming industry events or conferences that relate to your messaging and buyer personas? Is there a breaking news story that relates to your company’s solutions?
Analyse your buyers. Ask your existing customers about the publications they read and the events they attend when you meet with them, or scour their social feed for evidence of the influencers they follow, and the type of content they share.
Analyse your competitors. Which channels are your competitors using to distribute their messaging? On which social channels are the top brands having most success in generating followers, shares, and comments?
Stage 2: Identifying Strategic Opportunities
Hold a brainstorm session with your team to explore opportunities for integrating owned media with paid and earned media channels. Have you written an insightful or challenging article on a topic that is of interest to a major industry influencer? Then, find a way to connect the two. Have you published an eBook on a topic that is currently making waves in your industry? Newsjack the breaking news by promoting your content through display ads, sponsored content, and in online chat forums.
Examine threats. Within inbound marketing, not all publicity is good publicity, and when it comes to earned media and unreliable paid media resources, it’s critical to plan for the worst. Make sure you have a reputation management plan in place for responding to negative media, and have a backup plan in place for delayed publication on external channels.
Employ a 10X mind-set! When competing with the top brands, catching up with the crowd is not good enough. Differentiate your B2B firm (link: new eBook) by coming up with strategies that outperform the margin ten times!
Stage 3: Prioritise, Implement, Measure, Adapt
Don’t get overwhelmed, prioritise! Rank your ideas in order of their assumed impact and reach, and give them a score for the resources that execution will require.
Apply the 80/20 rule. Identify those ideas that would deliver an 80 per cent impact by applying only 20 per cent of your effort and resources, and start implementing these low-hanging fruit first.
Implement, measure, and adapt. In the fast changing online world it is wise not to settle for assumptions of what works, but instead to keep measuring your results and adapting accordingly. Track your referral traffic and double-down your focus to capitalise on the media channels that have proven to deliver the best results.
Differentiate your B2B Firm with Media Convergence
If there’s one thing a B2B tech company can learn about marketing from the field of media convergence, it’s this: If you want to attract and engage the modern buyer, you will have to reach out beyond your owned media channels. Repetition improves awareness and reputable placement enhances credibility.