Intelligent Content – Should we be bullied by Data?

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To create a powerful piece of content, having the correct data and analytics is important – but should data lead the conversation or are we missing out on an opportunity for human connection? Data and audience analytics only give us half the picture, without human intelligence the story is only half told, and we fall short of forging a connection.

According to the Content Marketing Institute, Intelligent Content “combines the wonders of technology with human capability in a way that powerfully supports an organization’s goals”.

Lovely, but what is the real relationship between technology as an enabler and motivating human behaviour with beautiful content? Is it even possible?

The magic, we believe, lies in using journalistic skill and overarching human intelligence to really make your audience sit up, take notice and engage. Taken further, the content should ignite a mood, emotion or response, and ultimately drive behaviour. In short, it should light fires.

In content marketing the challenge is always to tell a brand’s story, regardless of channel, in the most compelling way, in order to evoke a response. That “response” is either to change perceptions, forge a brand affinity, sell product or all the above!  Easier said than done, or is it?

  • Forget B-to-B, or B-to-C

Think B-to-Me. We are talking to humans, people. With feelings and emotions who need to walk away from your message thinking a little (or a lot) differently about your brand than they did before. And it’s not about what your PowerPoint presentation to the board says about your brand, it’s what your customer wants to hear and how you have responded to their very real needs. Data can help with that bit.

  • Think like a story teller

Hire the very best editors and creatives your budget can afford. A great editor will take your brand message and turn it into a compelling piece of storytelling, whether in a picture or 140 characters, and elicit an emotional response. Your power point presentation “reworked” won’t cut it. A good editor will put the reader at the heart of the messaging, then the brand will be subtly be woven into the narrative.

  • Don’t let the Data push you around

We have all heard marketing tales of products that would never have seen the light of day had they “listened” to the research (we’d still be using Walkman’s).  Data will tell you the facts and figures, the how and when but human intelligence will provide the why – it’s what’s needed to really understand your target audiences’ inner workings and passions and enable you to respond with brilliant content. Editors, regardless of channel, should advocate fiercely for the customer and what truly drives them.

  • Measure, Measure, Measure

Beautiful words and pictures aren’t enough. Content agencies need to be accountable and here’s where data comes in again. Its the metrics that will enable you to measure success for your client and but it’s content informed by EQ that will create the relationships and ensure longevity.