Thursday, August 23, 2012

What do Brand Journalists, Storytelling and Triggers Have in Common?

Like most of you I spend A LOT of time reading blogs! I subscribe to my favorite marketing and sales blogs, and I learn something every day from any one of them. The multitude of ideas always gets me thinking about how I can improve our brand at iLantern.

I checked into one of my favorites, “It’s All About Revenue” from Eloqua.  There was a recent post about the best B2B storytellers. Looking deeper into the blog much of what these companies are doing is curating news and content for their audience. A light bulb went off.  The goal of curation is to take masses of information and pull out that which is relevant, pertinent, and significant for your audience.

This is easier said than done.

We can have RSS feeds, but can we hone in on that data that we are looking for – the data that reveals crucial moments about the companies and people we need to know about to preform our jobs at the highest level?  If we can hone in on the timely data, then we will be able to tell better corporate stories as brand journalists, marketers and sales people.  Using technology to hone in on the right data makes for better messaging, better campaigns, better microsites, and better phone calls. A curated version of data based on timely events helps create a story that is worth returning to and sharing via all the social outlets that are available. 

Brand Journalists are responsible for telling the story of the brand, but without the fancy marketing title.  What is a journalist-but a writer who knows news and knows how to tell a compelling story? Journalists spend lots of time researching, discovering, and innovating a unique voice that others will feel not only feel an affinity to, but also finish the piece more informed about whatever topic is presented.  A brand journalist simply has a more direct focus to educate leads and clients through effective storytelling. Brand journalists don’t even, necessarily, have to be specific about the brand as Cisco points out, but make no mistake they are advocates of the brand and their focus is to captivate leads and clients with stories that matter for them.

Brand Journalists face information overload like the rest of us.
Information overload isn’t just a buzzword, but a real problem.   Enter triggers.  Event data helps with the research and the composition of the story.  For example, Apple and Samsung are in a heated legal battle.  Do your leads and customers care about litigation?  They might.  And it might be worth you adding that into the fabric of a brand’s story.  Or it could be a million other types of triggers that your leads and clients care about.  Not to get too fancy, but segments might care about different things.  You might have brand journalists who create stories for all your different sectors and segments.  The possibilities are virtually endless. 

GI Joe said “Now you know, and knowing is half the battle.” (This might be dating myself, I admit.) I would add that it isn’t just “knowing”, but culling out the data that makes sense to share, as part of your brand’s story, is way more than half the battle; you’ve virtually won!

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