We all know that companies spend millions of dollars each year on large corporate branding and marketing campaigns. Case in point: a single 30-second TV spot during this year’s Super Bowl costs upwards of $5 million alone – something to keep in mind on game day. The investment is often required to maintain brand awareness across a wide consumer audience, especially as attention spans become shorter than ever before and the media landscape becomes increasingly fragmented.
But what works for generating corporate brand awareness often isn’t nearly as effective at the local grassroots level. That’s especially true when it comes to content marketing, where a one-size-fits-all approach is destined to be ineffective in the long term.
Why? In reaction to the overwhelming amount of content available out there, consumers have had to focus their attention on content that is personally relevant and relatable, answers a question or need, or uncovers something they’re interested in. Everything else – for better or worse – simply gets tuned out.
As marketers, we must ask ourselves: how can we take the content that our firm is already producing and invest it at the regional level? How can we make it relevant for the local markets that our sales reps are doing business in and where, ultimately, purchase transactions are made?
Here are three tips to help you “localize” your content marketing efforts:
1. Invest in technology to streamline the content process
Time is money. First and foremost, companies must invest in technology that enables local field teams to publish new content across multiple online channels quickly and easily, whether that’s on social media, their local website, email or any combination of all of these. Not only will this increase opportunities for you to amplify corporate-driven regional campaigns, but also provides valuable workflow efficiencies at both the company and local level.
With this in place, customers and prospects can see fresh, on-brand content whenever they land on your rep’s local website or social media profile, or receive a personalized email from that rep that directly relates to their interests. And all your advisors have to do is click on the corporate-approved content they want to share, quickly personalize it if they want, select the channels they want to post to, and click “publish” (or schedule ahead).
2. Provide helpful content for reps to share
For high-touch industries such as financial services, the long-term relationship between a field rep and a client is paramount to growing and maintaining business. With so many relationships developing online, it’s important for your field reps to be seen as local, vested experts in the eyes of their networks and community.
When creating and curating content for your reps to share, look for informative articles, videos, graphics and tools that will help the end customer or prospect. For example, this might mean sharing articles and calculators about college savings plans during the late summer months when birth rates are at their highest, or, during the winter, content around the implications that bad weather might have on insurance rates.
3. Measure, assess, optimize and then repeat
For your local content marketing program to succeed, you need to know what’s working, what’s not, and do more of the former. The specific metrics by which you should measure your program differs for every organization, but for most, engagement metrics such as number of likes, shares, comments and/or downloads are key indicators of content marketing effectiveness.
By identifying what types of content resonate the most both with your field reps and their networks, you can refine your content production and curation efforts to drive even greater results. It’s a win-win for both corporate and your local force.
A local content marketing program involves maintaining a fine balance between brand interests and the interests of those with their boots on the ground. By investing in technology to maximize productivity, keeping the end consumer in mind, and optimizing as you go, you’ll be in a much better position for long-term success.
For more insights on how to shift to a local marketing strategy, download our latest free ebook, Making the Shift From Corporate to Local Marketing: Five Ways to Maximize Advisor Success in the Digital Age.