Full disclosure: I am not on the design team at TopRank Marketing.
But you know what I mean. You’ve eaten dinner at dozens, if not hundreds of restaurants in your lifetime. But there are likely one or two that stick out in your memory. What makes them memorable?
That question drove an intriguing presentation at B2B Marketing Exchange, led by four expert marketers:
Ryan Brown, Ceros
Darius Eslami, Carbon Black
Paige Gildner, Bluecore
Sharon Shapiro, Bluecore
B2BMX Speakers 2020
Short answer: What makes experiences different and memorable is if they’re really good… or really bad. Anything in the middle tends to blur together in our recollection. Only the extremes stand out.
“What makes experiences different and memorable is if they’re really good… or really bad. Anything in the middle tends to blur together in our recollection. Only the extremes stand out.” @NiteWritesCLICK TO TWEET
Case in point: The vast majority of B2B content. It’s…fine! But maybe not so memorable.
The Five Levels of Memorable Content
Ryan observed that, when a B2B business has customers or clients in the office, we offer amazing experiences: Everything from go-kart rides to monogrammed socks.
So why do we offer blocks of black-and-white text in a PDF to our digital customers? Not only does our static content fail to be memorable, it isn’t measurable, either. Interactive, immersive content can provide a better experience and help marketers optimize at the same time.
According to Ryan, there are five levels of “memorability” for great content:
Narrative. This is text content at its most elemental: ad copy, blog posts, stories, scripts.
Visual Elements. Images, graphics, photos and videos liven up the text, but are still static assets on the page.
Integrated elements. Forms, maps, chat, embedded content. This level pulls in multiple different types of content from external sources, like a lead gen form or a Google map.
Interactive Elements. This type of content solicits and rewards active engagement, versus passive consumption. It can include content you click, touch, or hover over to open content paths and customize the experience.
Immersive Elements. This type of content comes alive as the audience moves through it, with animation, actions triggered on scroll and click, parallax effects to give depth, and multiple layers of content.
Most B2B marketers are proficient in the first two levels, and many are getting comfortable with the third. But truly interactive and immersive experiences aren’t as common.
Barriers to Immersive Content
According to Ryan, one reason we get stuck with same-old content is the workflow between teams. Typically, content teams create the copy and hand it off to design. The design team isn’t consulted in the planning or execution of the copy.
Then, the design team takes the copy and goes through the design process in their silo. There’s no collaboration; it’s content + design.
To fix that workflow, Bluecore’s Paige and Sharon recommend that content and design teams work together, from planning to execution to optimization, in order to:
Partner on content development
Frequently sync on milestones
To illustrate how their process leads to more engaging experiences, 工作职能邮件数据库 Paige and Shannon showed off their Content Concierge, an interactive recommendation engine for their content library.
Versus their static content, Bluecore’s Content Concierge achieved a 93% higher interaction rate, and 80% more dwell time.
The other major roadblock for interactive experiences is the tools marketers use to create content. These tools tend to reinforce the divide between content and design, Ryan says. More complex multimedia experiences also require a third cook in the kitchen: A web development team or vendor partner.
The solution is to seek out tools that empower content and design to work together on interactive, immersive experiences.
Darius from Carbon Black shared how his team used Ceros to design different types of experiences for their customers. They created a choose-your-own-adventure style game for an immersive, long-form experience. But they also created a snackable March Madness-inspired tournament game that people could play in under a minute.