If you spend even a couple of hours listening to the marketing department conversations at Uberflip, I guarantee you’ll hear the word “experience” come up at least a few times. Whether it’s the demand generation team evaluating our email marketing experience, or our account-based marketer strategizing how to make direct mail plays even more experiential, it’s clear that experience is baked into everything we do.
The key thing about all the experiences that our team creates is that content always takes a front seat. It fuels lead generation, ABM campaigns, social media ads, event follow-up, and product launches. The content experiences we create are what help make our—and any—brand cohesive and memorable. Even as a demand generation marketer, you’re probably starting to find that content and branding are increasingly prevalent in your role. (And if they’re not, they should be.)
In this blog, I’m going to show how to make your brand narrative consistent for everyone on every channel, every time.
The Importance of Experience
As a modern marketer, I’m sure you get the importance of having a strong and cohesive brand. It’s how people recognize you, remember you, and form connections with you. Fans of our company associate us with our fun pink headbands. Having a strong brand is one thing. What really sets you apart is your content and the experience you create with it.
When Spotify mixes me the perfect playlist or when Netflix suggests a series that becomes my new favorite, I don’t forget it. The experiences I have using those products shape my perception of their brands and keep me coming back for more.
But like a lot of things in the marketing world, creating these experiences is easier said than done.
Creating Content Experiences as a Branded Destination
If you’ve interacted with the Uberflip brand at all, you’ll notice that most campaigns will send you to a personalized and curated content experience. For example, in our ebook nurture, we send our subscribers to the ebook download page that include a CTA. This sends them to a stream of other supporting content.
The same goes for our direct mail plays. A personalized bottle of wine or a Netflix subscription is an experience in itself. We try to take that a step further and bring our content into the mix. When our account-based marketer sends out packages to our target accounts, there’s always something inside that directs them back to a fully customized content stream. CMOs are shown different content than directors, and demand generation marketers are served different content than content marketers. All of the experiences, however, leverage our existing content and are distinctly tied to our brand.
We use this approach across most teams. Sales creates Uberflip-tailored content streams for prospects. Our social ads send target accounts to customized experiences, and so do our display ads and emails.
These kinds of content experiences reinforce our brand experience because they a) help us practice what we preach by focusing on the content experience, and b) provide a pleasant and memorable experience for our customers and prospects.
Brand Experience at Each Stage of the Buyer Journey
It’s no secret that the way you interact with people who are strangers to your business is different than how you engage with your customer advocates. It’s important to stay consistent with your brand, regardless of who you’re reaching out to or what stage of the sales cycle they’re in.
Someone who’s engaged with our latest report, for example, will be emailed this personalized stream from our Director of Content Experience, Paige Gerber. They’ve shown an active interest in learning more about the topic. So we curate more articles for them to read. We suggest attending an upcoming webinar that’s related to the report. Maybe they’re really interested and want to see a demo of our product, so we show them a demo CTA too.
If someone isn’t super familiar with Uberflip, we’ll instead direct them to a landing page, which provides a more foundational overview of what content experience is and why it’s important, prompting visitors to check out the full report at the bottom of the page. What’s key, though, is that even though these two audiences are in different buying stages, they’re both getting served a consistent brand experience.
Find Your Talk Trigger: F#*k Content Marketing
Jay Baer talks a lot about the idea of a “Talk Trigger” in his latest book. We leverage Jay’s formula for word of mouth to get our messaging to stand out and get people talking. Earlier this year, I wrote a blog post that ended up becoming Uberflip’s new Talk Trigger: F#*k Content Marketing: It’s Time to Start Marketing Your Content. I don’t know if we fully realized its potential at the time, but this messaging really encompasses what Uberflip does, and we started using it everywhere. It’s a slide in my keynotes, it’s pinned to the top of our blog, and it’s become our booth messaging for events this year.
At first, the team was hesitant, but then we thought, f#*k it. It’s our brand, and we’re going to turn it into an experience.
I’m happy to report that we haven’t severely offended anyone with this message. They actually agree with it.
So, I encourage you to find your own F#*k Content Marketing. Make a statement that encompasses what you do and what you believe in then create an experience out of it. Use it to start conversations and fuel your marketing approach—and get your whole team on board. A positive brand experience starts with creating a remarkable content experience for every persona and stage of the funnel. No matter where they’re interacting with your brand.