Content Marketing and Social Business are indeed linked. Joined at the hip if you will. The simple reason for this is that as much as your external audience thrives on content to become engaged with your brand, products and services – so do your internal stakeholders.
See, content marketing or content strategy is the process of ensuring engagement with your external audience. A way of feeding them the information that they want when they want it so that they don’t feel like they are being marketed to. This is also known as inbound marketing.
Traditional advertising, billboard, newspaper advertising can all be grouped together as outbound marketing. Outbound in the sense that a company had a message it wanted to deliver and so it did. It pushed the message out on every channel appropriate; and the content was largely “buy this; for this much $$$”. Consumers started filtering out these messages as they really were not enriching their lives. This gave birth to the evolution / revolution we call inbound marketing.
Inbound marketing as I have said is about giving your audience what they want when they want it. And here is where the link comes in; who better to do that than your staff?
Social Business is about enriching the lives of your audience in such a way that they cannot help but feel that they can not live without you! Granted I will give you that “likes”; “follows”; “shares”; etc. are all a part of it; but that is not social business. That is social media.
Business benefit. Aligning to sales and business objectives is what both content strategy and by extension social business are all about. Valuable content that is platform agnostic (mobile; desktop; wearable or tablet) is the currency of social business. It gives us the hooks on which to have meaningful and valuable conversations.
Social business – at its highest level – is about meaningful and valuable conversations. On to that we can begin to build trust and a relationship. Once the internal hierarchies are positioned in such a way as to allow for conversation to happen;for information to flow and collaboration to take place, then the content strategy itself can be transformed to provide a more compelling and rich experience for our audience.
Social Business and Content Strategy are not the future. They are very much the present. If you are not actively engaged in changing the way in which your content is positioned in the market – you have already lost.