Melt Content’s Dan Miles spoke at a breakfast briefing for travel industry professionals organised by Marketing platform provider Marin Software to coincide with last month’s Travel Technology Europe trade show. Lee Hayhurst reports
Content marketing need not be “fluffy” and campaigns can be developed against strict return on investment objectives and commercial plans.
Dan Miles, managing director of Melt Content, told an audience of marketing professionals in travel that content is often “shrouded in fluffy brand metrics”.
However, he said it is a discipline that can have a very measurable commercial impact. One of the common challenges was “demystifying getting ROI from organic performance”.
Firms’ commercial objectives are increasingly to reduce reliance on Paid Per Click advertising in a fragmented marketplace.
“Use search data and social data to create crafted campaigns,” said Miles.” There are algorithms you can apply to content marketing to make sure it’s measurable.
“When you create your content strategy start with your commercial objectives and how you want to improve performance.
“Those are objectives that inform the kind of content you are creating. Focus your projects where you want to develop customer and where you want to develop a bottom line.”
Miles advised travel firms not to drown themselves in data. “Big data is ubiquitous. Just use that which you can.
“You can actually create very rich, diverse content strategies with just search and social data.”
It is vital that all firms do at least basic click path mapping through platforms like Google Analytics to give them insight into how people are hitting their online assets.
Miles said this ensures brands are not unnecessarily competing on highly competitive search terms.
Combined with more qualitative data, like analysis of the language people use to talk about target sectors, Miles said firms can validate their marketing objectives and strategies.
“Social insights will help you understand how to nuance that content for channels like Facebook and to create content to energise the social audience.
“Analysis of social data will give you an idea of what keywords and what topics and categories are emerging. It’s easy to revert back to the content that everyone else uses.
“Data from search and social thematic category insights will help broaden that and make sure that it’s tied to the reality of customers.”
And Miles advised firms to derive insights internally from other areas of their business, not just the research efforts of the marketing department.
“A lot of rich stuff can come from firms’ sales and customer facing teams, the parts of your business that deals directly with your customers.”
Miles said marketers considering a major content marketing campaign should first look at optimising the content they already have and conversion rates.
“Use that to justify doing the more creative stuff and that’s an easy sell internally,” he said.