Content engages users. That’s why marketers offer it, in the hopes that the right e-mail or white paper or blog post at the right time will tip a prospect into becoming a customer.
But success for the marketer means offering the right content to the right user. And that’s the challenge – or opportunity – that you as martech providers face. How can your platform leverage existing technologies to offer this capability?
Why Do It?
Multiple studies indicate that content marketing is becoming a strategic priority for an increasing number companies. A Content Marketing Institute study said that 94 percent of the small businesses surveyed used content marketing, and that 60 percent planned to increase their content marketing spend over the next 12 months.
As content marketing gets a bigger toehold in the overall marketing landscape, customers are going to be looking for martech that can make the delivery of that content easy and focused. So there’s growth to be had in offering marketers the simplest and most precise way to deliver the right content to the right user.
How to Do It?
A key component of delivering the right content to the right user is the humble cookie. Your platform can leverage cookie matching to give marketers the ability to identify repeat visitors, gather demographic identifiers, and target them for content rather than advertising. With first-party and third-party cookie data, platforms build more specific user profiles, creating 360˚ views, so that marketers can better target the user with content that actually interests them.
This means that building an effective and scalable data stream with first- and third-party data from various sources about users is the first step. The platforms who win marketshare will leave no stone unturned: searches users are doing, links they’re clicking, sites they’re visiting, content they’re downloading and many other behaviors generate cookie data that can make potential customer views more detailed and effective. Once the data from these many actions come in via a streaming application (like Apache Storm, Spark + Spark Streaming, Kafka queues), they can be streamed into operational or analytical storage.
The Complete Pipeline
The next task is to build connections between that pipeline and the customer’s CMS and CRM system (as long as they support integration).
By giving marketers the ability to match cookie-generated profiles to existing company information (say, when an e-mail address used to download a white paper matches that of the customer’s profile), your platform can leverage layers of existing data to more precisely target content-related appeals.
Using this information, the strongest platforms will offer the marketer the ability to set rules (i.e. be programmatic) about what content is presented to which types of profiles or actual users.
For example, just as adtech platforms automate the display of ads for carefully profiled users, the martech platform must be able to do the same for the display of content. When a user clicks through from a tweet to an article, the platform must match demographic data from that user’s Twitter account to first- and third-party cookie data and automatically direct the user to a personalized landing page or other content related to that article. Similarly, it must be able to match users that click on Google search ads with CRM and other data so that they can be directed to a landing page associated with a relevant white paper, blog post, or other content.
For the complete content delivery pipeline, analytics must be part of the mix. Using existing analytics engines for advertising ROI, martech providers can repurpose them for content ROI analysis, using predictive analytics and traffic data to allow customers to identify their top-performing content.