I bet you're thinking, no way does the idea of monotony in B2B content marketing make sense, right? Monotony is boring. Monotony is the enemy. Same, blah, blah, blah will just drive our prospects away...
You're likely thinking that monotony is the droning on of someone about the same old stuff in a flat tone without inflection. Perhaps that last meeting you attended where you had to fight to stay awake. Or that last white paper you read that was so academic you kept reading the same paragraph over and over again before you realized you were stuck.
That's not what I'm talking about.
In content marketing, monotony means focusing on ideas for the long-term. It means reinforcing ideas that are core to educating your prospects. It means staying with those ideas over the long haul, exposing all the different facets of how the idea impacts your prospects' business success in relation to the problem they're solving.
The basic problem with monotony is that we (marketers) get bored. We want to write about new stuff. We think once we've shared an idea with our target audience that they've latched onto it and understand all it implies. This is why it's so hard for marketers to give up campaigns. Campaigns have a start and end date, defining your commitment to that idea. You know you'll get to move on to something new in a few months, so you have something to look forward to.
Well, I've got news for you. Marketing is not about what you find interesting and this type of short-term focus could be diminishing your prospects' buying momentum.
Here are a few reasons why:
- We know much more about the ideas we're sharing than our prospects do.
- It takes anywhere from 5 to 12 exposures for a new idea to stick.
- In late 2010, 95% of 2,500 leaders reported their top challenge is resistance to change.
- 50% of those leaders also indicated that breaking through the noise is becoming more difficult.
[*last two statistics from Global Dialogue Center]
It's doubtful in a B2B complex purchase that only one person needs to be convinced to embrace change. Without cementing our ideas with our prospects, affecting change is made even more challenging. Our marketing content needs to focus on making them so conversant with our ideas that their ability to persuade change is elevated.
With complex sales, the amount of education, expertise and evidence information necessary to sway priorities and preferences to the extent needed to reach choice is staggering. Changing your focus on a whim, because something new and shiny comes along only creates friction with your leads because they must now choose to make the effort to re-orient themselves with your new idea.
It's like following along a path and constantly being bombarded with forks in the road. Choosing which one to follow when they were treading happily down the trail - learning everything they needed to know - causes fatigue, takes too much effort and makes them wonder if what they'd come to rely on from you was only a flash in the pan with no real substance to back it up.
Then prospects wonder - What if my experience as a customer with them will be like this?
If you truly understand the core ideas that impact the way in which your offering helps your prospects achieve their goals, then you'll find many ways to talk about that over the long term without boredom-for you, or for them.
Abandoning key ideas for the realm of something new can lessen the power of your marketing content. Embracing monotony with excellence requires a keen sense of creativity.
As a measure of your monotony skill, go review your marketing programs from last year and count the number of times your marketing programs related to solving a particular problem changed overall focus.
Now look at this year's plan and see how you can tighten the focus to close the gaps to make it simpler for your prospects to stay engaged. It's likely that you can make some shifts to create a more consistent experience for your prospects across the entirety of their buying process.
Most of all, realize that monotony can be a good thing for content marketing.