Worry not, businesses of the world! Even though the New York Times has declared “Uncertainty” to be the word of the year, you are not alone to weather the storm.
We software vendors and consultants of the world have your back!
After a decade of content marketing it is impressive how quickly almost every single software vendor and consultancy has responded to seize the opportunity ahead ….. ahmm, sorry, (cough cough), I mean of course the challenge faced by businesses. Collectively, we have already produced a gazillion blog posts, ebooks, and webinars on how to prevail during these times.
Here is a 10-second summary of the gist of all of these articles
What businesses need now is: (insert here, exactly what we have always offered)
OK, that sounds facetious but honestly, it is well meant by providers and consultants. If the things we offered weren’t valuable during times of economic uncertainty, they wouldn’t be valuable during other times either. The reason providers and consultants exist is because they are valuable.
So, it is honestly true that they are of course also valuable during times of uncertainty. The only question is, if businesses have less resources to invest, how should they prioritize in funding projects? What’s in, what’s out?
No wonder all software vendors and consultants have been quicker than normal to seize this content marketing opportunity. Of course, we all want to ensure that we’re “in” not “out”.
3 minute summary of the gist of all of these articles
For a more realistic summary of these articles, let’s study a word cloud generated from a random splattering of 15 of these help articles from just the last month. Just articles that come up when you google uncertainty, marketers, digital business.
Credit: This image was built with WordClouds.com
1. The number one word of uncertain times: “Can”
I love this. Can-do attitude.
It really represents what’s needed now, i.e. jumping into proactive action with an optimistic attitude. Going on the offensive, not just circling the wagons and putting heads in the sand.
Granted, I included a lot of articles about marketers in this word cloud, so there is a selection bias behind the fact that marketing is so big in this word cloud.
But … it rings true.
While Marketing and advertising budgets have already been under review at many companies, in actuality, true marketing is needed more than ever now.
Unless a brand is selling commodity groceries that everybody needs to live, they need to explain even better now why they should get their slice of the wallet share. Everyone needs to work harder to earn some of the discretionary spending.
So as marketers we need to go on the offensive, not just throw up our hands.
Granted, I also included a lot of articles about digital business in this word cloud, so there is again a selection bias behind the fact that the word “digital” is relatively big in this word cloud.
But this too is true.
Nowadays, life is digital, as Contentsquare’s CPO, Lucie Buisson, often says. Almost all purchase journeys begin on digital. Businesses need to differentiate via their digital channels, not just offer a digital channel that is free of friction and frustrations. Said differently, our digital channels need to help us earn our slice of the discretionary spending of our customers.
For that, it’s not enough to defend against losing revenue by making our digital channels friction-free.
We absolutely do need to fix all leaks from websites and apps to avoid losing transactions and conversions unnecessarily. But that’s not enough for winning a transaction. To win a transaction we also need to engage and persuade customers.
- We need to understand what makes the customer click, i.e. what are THEY trying to accomplish on the site or app
- We need to make the case for our brand and products.
- We need to earn their business,
- We need to be more persuasive than ever
- We need to be more relevant and inspire more with our selection of content and product placements that we present to each customer.
That’s a lot of pressure on our content strategies and for creating seamless customer experiences.
We could try to get our content right without measuring its effectiveness via Digital Experience Analytics. But that would be like saying … ah heck, I am late for my appointment, so instead of using the GPS to guide me on the fastest path to drive to my destination, I will just wing it.
Ahm … good luck!
Putting all of the help articles together
Here is the meta-help tip for weathering the storm this year. Amalgamated from the word cloud.
BUSINESSES CAN prevail in this time of ECONOMIC UNCERTAINTY by being even better at MARKETING and DIGITAL despite SPENDING less.
Courtesy of the consultants and software vendors of the world. (You’re welcome.)
A surprise in this word cloud
The following surprised me in this word cloud: How small is the word “pandemic!” Can you spot it?
What’s wrong in this word cloud?
There seems to be a collective blindspot in this splattering of help articles. Some words should have been much bigger.
Namely, the words
The only way any of those softwares and consultancies are going to be useful is if they enable the people and organization in the business to work even smarter, faster, and have a greater impact.
How do we enable teams to cut wasted efforts and make everything easier for them so they can do more with the same amount of resources?
As the founder of Contentsquare, Jonathan Cherki, often says,
“it’s about people transformation, not just digital transformation. If we can help everyone measure their contribution to customers, their experiences, and the businesses, we will transform the way to work.”
If we can do that, that’s how we enable our businesses to prevail in this time of economic uncertainty. Namely, by enabling us to be even better at marketing and at designing differentiated digital experiences, despite spending less.