By Kim Gusta
When it comes to content – planning it, creating it, using it – Product Marketing’s role is often unclear. In many organizations, the role of content creator and planner is the Marketing Communications team. They handle outbound marketing execution, and hence, take the lead in content creation and distribution.
But given that Product Marketing is often a key business owner for a particular product or service, and probably cares a good deal about how their product is being marketed to buyers, it makes sense to include Product Marketing in content marketing efforts.
Plus product marketers have the buyer knowledge to create really good content. No one else in Marketing likely knows as much about their buyers as the product marketers.
So exactly where does Product Marketing fit with the content lifecycle? In my recent article for Pragmatic Marketing, “Content Strategy Essentials for Product Launch Success”, I outline Product Marketing’s strategic role in content development – by understanding the buyer deeply enough to determine what content will alleviate concerns and answer their questions. Without this essential knowledge, the organization creates generic content that doesn’t engage anyone.
Product Marketing is the key marketing role that interacts with buyers and has responsibility for interviewing them regularly whether through Win/Loss interviews, as advocated by Pragmatic Marketing, or ongoing interactions at trade shows, site visits, etc. This vast buyer knowledge is essential for creating content that resonates with buyers.
If you’re a product marketer and wondering how to get started sharing your buyer knowledge with your Marketing Communications team, consider using the Buyer/Content Marketing Matrix to map your buyer knowledge to each sales stages.
You can download a free Buyer/Content Marketing Matrix template here and customize it for your organization.
The Buyer/Content MarketingMatrix is useful in many ways – not only does it capture your expertise about questions buyers have throughout the sales cycle, but it’s a useful tool for training other Marketing teams about your buyers.
As you’ll see in the above example, the first three rows – Economic Buyer Questions, Technical Buyer Questions, and Content Goals – contain key information about a buyer’s information needs at each sales cycle stage. And since it takes buyer knowledge to create the information in these rows, they’re Product Marketing’s responsibility.
The fourth row, Content Ideas, is best created through joint collaboration of Product Marketing and Marketing Communications - Product Marketing takes the role of buyer advocate and Marketing Communications leverages their knowledge of which content mediums work best.
So if you’re a product marketer, fill out the first three rows of a Buyer/Content Marketing Matrix, hand it to your Marketing Communications’ lead, and setup a meeting to complete the fourth row together. It will have a great payoff for your content marketing, lead generation and nurturing efforts, and your buyers will thank you for it.
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