Driving pipeline growth is at the top of most B2B marketing organizations’ priority list. And as such, content experience as a way to build engagement, generate leads, and shorten the sales cycle is increasingly important. Your content experience, after all, can help or hinder your rate of conversion and has the potential to accelerate your funnel if you manage and optimize it.
But who within your organization is responsible for this critical aspect of marketing? Your content marketers? Your demand generation team? And if it’s the latter, should the buck ultimately stop with them?
A Demand Generation Marketer’s Duties
A demand generation marketer is fundamentally responsible for generating demand for products and services. They drive pipeline growth through key channels such as email, content marketing, paid media, landing pages, and events. They’re responsible for lead forecasting and nurturing, funnel performance, database management, and working with partners to run paid demand generation programs. Demand generation marketers are constantly analyzing and interpreting data points across marketing efforts to continually enhance program performance, and are focused on measurement and attribution.
Their ultimate goal is to ensure the health of the funnel, so their focus is on using content to provide more marketing qualified leads to sales.
Where Demand Generation and Content Experience Intersect
If you’re unfamiliar with all that content experience entails, you may not immediately see the connection between demand generation and content experience.
But if you think of demand generation as creating touch points throughout the conversion optimization and sales cycles, and content as the ultimate way to do that, then the experience around that content is very much a part of demand generation at a functional level.
To understand where the two disciplines converge, let’s take a look at Hubspot’s definition of demand generation.
The goal of demand generation is to build and nurture key prospect and customer relationships for the long term. Demand generation is an ebook campaign, a weekly newsletter for blog subscribers, a meetup event, or a company-sponsored webinar. It's not a quick fix, a banner ad, or an email blast.
So what part of content experience aligns best with demand generation? If you look at how we’ve defined content experience thus far, where there’s overlap is around the third component of the definition—engagement.
Content experience is (1) the environment in which your content lives,
(2) how it’s structured, (3) and how it makes your prospects or customers engage with your company.
Since most demand generation efforts are content and relationship-driven, content experience works in service of demand generation. An optimized content experience is inviting, engaging, and when provided consistently helps to build the kinds of relationships needed to drive pipeline growth.
How Much Should Demand Generation Marketers Own?
While it’s clear that an optimized content experience can certainly assist in building the relationships needed to convert prospects into customers, it doesn’t follow that demand generation marketers should be wholly responsible for content experience in their organizations.
Where ownership makes sense
Demand generation marketers rely on content to create demand for their products and services. As such, it’s imperative that the content experience is one that compels prospective buyers to act or engage further with the company. This team most definitely has a stake in the content experience and sees the benefits of an experience that’s optimized for conversion. But that’s only one part of the content experience.
Where it doesn’t
Like the content marketer, the demand generation marketer has little impact on certain aspects of the content experience, such as environment and structure. They’re unable to code any visual elements or site navigation. So they can’t really have holistic control over the content experience—without the tools, anyway. Based on that alone, it would be unreasonable to suggest that demand generation marketers should hold the bag on the holistic content experience by themselves.
In order to fully own the content experience for their organization, demand generation marketers would need greater access to and control of structural and environmental elements of the experience. They’d need to be able to affect the visual elements of the site, as well as how it’s organized. Until such time, it’s not a slam dunk, and the demand generation marketer should not be the sole role accountable for the organization’s content experience.
So if it’s not the demand generation marketer, who should own the content experience in your organization? We dig deeper into this question in the Who Owns the Content Experience ebook.
About the Author
Christine is a Content Marketer at Uberflip, where she focuses on creating content for content marketers (and digital marketers, and demand generation marketers, and really all sorts of marketers). She also wrote the (e)book on content experience.Follow on Twitter More Content by Christine Otsuka