ABM Interview: COO Fred Petrovsky Explains Content Marketing
Last week, The Association of Business Information & Media Companies (ABM) interviewed McMurry/TMG's Chief Operations Officer Fred Petrovsky about the state of content marketing, the recent merger of McMurry and TMG, how content strategy is developed and many more crucial elements to the growing importance of quality content in marketing.
Here's an excerpt of the interview, visit ABM's site for the full interview here.
ABM: Explain the current state of content marketing. What are clients looking for?
Petrovsky: Content marketing is becoming increasingly more complex for brands. It’s not just publishing a magazine like it was 20 years ago. It’s a very robust, strategic effort, often fueled by an integrated program. As a result, brands are realizing they can’t do it all themselves and still run their business, yet they understand the importance and the value so they’re increasing their commitment to content marketing.
As they move more of their spend into content, they are looking for outside advisors to help them develop programs and strategies that build their brands. We are responding by offering businesses experience in developing content across all platforms and formats. The kind of editorial, design and strategic skills we offer aren’t available at traditional ad agencies.
ABM: But what goes into these campaigns? How is the strategy developed, and how is it executed? Why do you think this is more effective than a traditional marketing effort?
Petrovsky: Well, content marketing develops strategy in a different way than traditional marketing or advertising. Traditional advertising would assume a one-size fits all approach to sharing information or content with a consumer; you develop a dazzling campaign and then go for as many repeat impressions to that campaign as you could possibly muster. Not to say that approach is broken, but it is certainly what has contributed to the average consumer being so overwhelmed by media and messages. I believe the average person is exposed to something like 5,000 ads a day.
In content marketing, we’re looking for relevance. We can’t assume that the same message or even the same medium would reach two different people. We look at the target audience’s trends and interests. For instance, are they active socially? Not just have an account, but also what are they creating, commenting, sharing? Does this audience own tablet or smartphone platforms? What are they reading? When?
That’s really the first stage to developing a content strategy. The second step is developing the content that will engage that audience and continually measuring and tweaking our approach so that we see a return for our clients. Content marketing is providing something that’s relevant and interesting. It doesn’t simply interrupt people, like ads; it engages people. Is that more effective than traditional advertising? I certainly think so, but an objective answer is that eMarketer.com just announced that marketers state content as their number one priority this year. That— and the relatively flat trajectory of digital and traditional ad spend — speak volumes.