According to the AMA, over the past 5 years, marketers increased their content publishing by 800%, only to see engagement decline by 89%. As marketers, we are striving to produce content quickly, without really understanding the impact of what we’re saying and how it will be received by our audience. Keeping your audience engaged and loyal is hard work. Giving them binge-worthy content gives you a fantastic head start. In this blog post, we’ll discuss why you need to create a binge experience, what Netflix has taught us about binge-worthy content, and the 4 principles of binge-worthy content that will keep your readers coming back for more.
Why create a binge experience?
41% of B2B buyers engage with 3-5 pieces of content before engaging with sales – Hubspot, 2019
2019 is the year for intent marketing. If you think about buyer intent and binge-worthy content together, you will be more effective in your intent marketing strategy.
You need to master ABM. Thinking about ABM through a binge-marketing lens will make it more fun and more effective at engaging your prospects.
Your audience demands it. Your audience wants to consume content at the rate they want to consume it, not at the rate you feed it to them. Create an experience that they can own.
You’ve been told to test AI. There are platforms that allow you to execute binge experiences that leverage AI to deliver content in a way that drives decisions using data.
You need to shorten your sales cycle. Thinking through a binge-experience will help you reduce sales cycles and increase sales volume.
Bingeing and Netflix
Netflix is widely admired for how it uses data to encourage binge behaviour as well as an original content strategy. It uses the data to inform plot-line, casting, language and director decisions. When Netflix released Bird Box in December 2018, it was a big hit in as a streaming product and playing off the bingeing urge, however, with critics it was a big fail. They said that the plotline, characters, and backstory were underdeveloped. Critics are a different kind of content consumer. They expressed that Bird Box was something you would create if you drew all your ideas from your user data…which they did. Ironically, the strategy that Netflix was celebrated for previously became the focus of doubt. Netflix was using data to firehose ideas at people, rather than emphasizing quality. If you want true quality content, it can’t just be about quantity and the number of eyeballs.
B2B readers are more like film critics than Netflix viewers. They’re interested and invested in their reading – they’re doing it with a specific purpose and have targeted needs. They have the expertise that’s relevant to the process. If you draw them to content and make a promise that you’ll deliver something great and you don’t follow through, it goes way deeper than the failure of one piece of content — it will dilute your brand image in the eyes of your audience and decrease the likelihood of them buying from you in the future.
The Four Principles for Creating Binge-Worthy Content Experiences
1. Form follows content
Know the whole story you want to tell first, then select the best format(s) to tell it. The idea of having to produce quality over volume is changing the game. It’s not enough anymore to get eyeballs. You can’t rely on catching someone’s attention by being shinier, louder, or present. You have to have something to say and you have to know to whom you are speaking. It’s not rocket science. What if we all started marketing projects with the story, the conversation, the problem we want to solve for or influence AND let the form follow. This is table stakes in creating quality content. And there is SO much value to connecting content strategies to your marketing strategies.
2. Be original
This is not about being a rebel just because. This is about tapping into your organization’s right to be original. In this sense, being original means knowing what you represent as an organization — your values, your mission, your stories — and then tapping into and telling those things to your intended audience in new, surprising and powerful ways.
3. Create experiences for your intended audience
The reason experiences matter to bingeing is that appealing to emotional and sensory stimulation staves off boredom and keeps readers stimulated. And in order to create an experience that evokes a reaction, you need to tap into WHO you are creating the experience for.
4. Measure meaningful actions
Match your marketing goals with content goals. If your goal is to drive an increase in leads at the top of the funnel, then have a plan to test which messages and stories create the highest engagement. This isn’t about throwing spaghetti at the wall. It’s about identifying the beginning of the measured journey your audience takes to get to know you better. The more you know at the top of the funnel in regards to what stories your audience want to hear, the better you’ll be able to tailor the entire experience and potentially shorten that sales cycle.
To learn more about these 4 principles, watch our Binge-Worthy Content Webinar below.
Check out our Binge-Worthy Marketing Stream for more resources that will help guide you to make a binge-worthy content experience.