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Bridging the Content Chasm for B-to-B marketing automation and lead generation

There’s a new marketing term that I’m hearing more and more often – “the Content Chasm”.

bridging the content chasm

It refers to the ascendance of content marketing (especially in B-to-B), and the differential between the current inventory of quality content that most B-to-B companies have, and the amount they need to have to market effectively.

I’m expanding the meaning of the Content Chasm to address two other major trends in B-to-B marketing:

  1. The difference between the ROI of marketing automation fueled by generic content, and what that same technology can accomplish when fueled by segmented and targeted messaging;
  2. The discrepancy between the formats most marketers use (primarily text and PDFs) for their messaging, and the way most prospects want to consume information (multimedia).

Changing buyer behaviors require B2B marketers to communicate with prospects and customers in new ways. 

How?  By delivering content that is personalized to the prospective buyers’ roles, where they are in their buying process and their personal preferences for consumption.

Buying marketing automation and then only using it for batch-and-blast emails is a waste of time and money.

Segmented, well-targeted and relevant communications get much better results.

The real benefit of marketing automation is exactly that: the ability to deliver the right message, with the right offer, to the right prospect, in the right format, at the right time.

Content + Automation = True 1 to 1 Marketing

In other words, true one-to-one marketing to many – something that we couldn’t do to any scale before marketing automation came along. This has made marketing automation a mission-critical system for B-to-B marketers, but too many marketing leaders head down the automation path without fully realizing what they’re getting into.

I’ve written before about the need for having processes in place to support and extend the effectiveness of marketing automation. It’s a topic that’s near and dear to my heart, so I’ll be revisiting it. The Content Chasm represents another major issue affecting the success of marketing automation, and of B-to-B lead generation and lead nurturing. I’ll also be diving deeper into it (pun intended) in future posts.

So tell me, what are your experiences with, or opinions about, the Content Chasm?

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