The term “content marketing” has been very kind to Kapost over the past few years. As content marketing has become the “next big thing” in digital marketing circles, Kapost has been able to associate ourselves closely with it and our company’s growth has exploded accordingly.
But what is content marketing? I’ve been working at the center of the space for years, but still I see no consensus.
Marketing has always been creating content, of course, so there’s nothing new to that. What I think is novel about “content marketing” is its focus on creating top-of-the-funnel, buyer-centric content, content that might not even mention the vendor or its offerings but focuses on the high-level interests and concerns of the buyer. Regardless of the precise definition, “content marketing” is indeed a new arrow in the marketing quiver. And, initially, the focus of our software had been to support this new “content marketing” initiative for our customers.
But at Kapost, our customers have asked us to do more.
The “content marketing,” “brand journalism,” or “thought leadership” at the top of the funnel is indeed important for earning attention and attracting new prospects. But marketing teams are responsible for content that introduces those prospects to a product and helps sales and customer-facing teams deliver a consistent company message across all stages of the customer lifecycle. After all, creating content to support the decision-making process and educate customers is what marketing does (and has always done).
Our B2B marketing customers produce all sorts of content for all sorts of functions, for example:
- Demand generation assets like eBooks, webinars, landing pages, and conferences at the middle of the funnel
- Product marketing / field marketing assets like sales decks, whitepapers, competitive battle cards, and product one-pagers at the bottom of the funnel
- Customer marketing assets like customer community posts, emails, and training materials for post-sale
B2B customers are increasingly choosing to interact with vendors digitally rather than directly with sales or account management personnel. Marketing must react by managing this previously sales-driven, person-to-person dialog with a content-driven, digital approach. But to succeed, marketers can no longer afford to operate in disparate silos. Instead, marketing teams must plan, execute, distribute (internally and externally), and optimize content, and the process must incorporate all levels of the funnel, all channels, and all functional groups. It’s the only way to deliver a cohesive, consistent customer journey.
Thus, at Kapost, we will now talk less and less about “content marketing,” that new marketing practice focused on the top of the funnel. Instead we will be supporting more broadly “marketing content,” i.e., all of the content that marketing produces. Whether it’s a cutting-edge thought leadership asset or the most mundane product one-pager, content is what marketing does, what it has always done. But given its new responsibility in managing the customer dialog, marketing must execute like never before, managing all its content across silos and the funnel with precision and excellence. Kapost is the platform, the marketing content engine, to satisfy this critical need.
As we move forward in our mission to solve the content challenge for B2B marketers, we are glad today to announce a new set of investors to help power our growth. Among them is Salesforce, a company whose technology has been instrumental to supporting tremendous sales-driven revenue growth in countless B2B companies.
As the buyer’s journey has changed, marketing has stepped up to manage more and more of the customer dialog, becoming an equal partner with sales. Given this new responsibility, marketing must execute like never before, creating and distributing strategic content across the customer lifecycle. So as B2B marketers contend with the challenges of this new era, Kapost is delighted to be partnering with Salesforce, which historically has elevated the sales game for so many B2B companies, to bring similar excellence to marketing through our content platform.