As digital marketers, one of the most important parts of what we do is crafting stories that are relevant and meaningful. During my session at this year’s Pubcon Las Vegas, I spoke about the value of knowing your audiences and creating great experiences for them through lead generation campaigns. Crafting stories that resonate was a main theme throughout the conference, and based on my conversations and observations there, I’ve compiled three insights about what it means to tell digital marketing stories in the most effective ways:
Go Beyond Just Providing Data
Data is important, but to tell a story, it needs to be used in the right ways. Merely throwing every piece of information into your reports and dashboards doesn’t mean that it will make a strong point. “Numbers out of context are just numbers; numbers in context tell a story,” Alan Knecht, Founding Partner of K’nechtology, Inc., said during his presentation. Dashboards are a good example of where marketers tend to fail at outlining stories for business leadership teams or agency clients. Instead of overwhelming your audience with data, present a clear, simple data visualization and explain how it impacts business decisions moving forward. As I said in my presentation, “Think about the mindset of the customer and what story they really need to hear.” This also applies to clients, leadership teams and stakeholders.
90 with 90: The Four Steps of Successful Lead Generation
In 90 with 90, 90octane team members share marketing insights in 90 second or less. On the left, I describe the four steps of successful lead generation that I presented at Pubcon Las Vegas.
Craft Compelling Stories for B2B
Smarter Searches CEO Courtney Herda argued that companies need to be telling engaging stories, even in unengaging industries. This is true, and applies to every form of messaging. Even though our B2B clients aren’t selling products like lattes or cosmetics directly to consumers, we can still create compelling content. One example Herda mentioned was Norton creating The Most Dangerous Town on the Internet. As a leader in digital security, they made a documentary that explored the damage that hackers can wreak. This allowed them to highlight the risks and potential pain points of prospects so that people would rethink their security solutions, without directly touting their security products. It’s up to the people behind companies to make stories authentic and appealing, regardless of industry.
Measure and Track Results
“If a tree falls in the forest and you didn’t put analytics code on it, did it actually fall?” When Courtney Herda said this, many people in the audience laughed. They laughed because we all think it! How do we know what happened if we don’t have the right tracking and analytics in place? What’s an interesting story if we can’t even measure how effective it was? Make sure to use page analytics like click mapping and heat mapping on every site. It’s also important to get Google Analytics code and other tracking code in place to effectively measure the performance of marketing channels. If you fail to get tracking and measurement frameworks in place by launch, you’ll lack the insights you need to make the ongoing improvements that provide the best possible experience for your audience.
About the Author
Anna thrives on creating, measuring and optimizing paid media programs. As a goal-oriented marketer with B2B and B2C experience, she applies audience knowledge to every program.