Content marketing has quickly become one of the most important marketing channels for any business. According to data reported by CMI, 88 percent of B2B marketers produce at least one piece of content a day. Of course, marketers aren’t the only one’s producing content — product, sales, customer service and other teams within companies are all producing customer facing content.
In order for businesses to continue to provide customers and prospects with the right content, via the right channel at the right time, they will need to embrace content as a service (CaaS).
Where does your content live today?
Take a moment and think about where all of the different content you and your team produce lives today. If your business is like most, it is probably spread out over a variety of places. Some content might live on Google Drive, other content might be based in a website CMS, while other content might be trapped inside a mobile app.
If you or a colleague wants to access and repurpose this content, how easy is it to do? Will you need to reformat the content so that it looks appropriate on a new device or channel? Can you even access the content yourself?
In some cases, you may not even be aware that the content you are looking for already exists somewhere else in the organization. This is the problem with the way content is managed by most businesses today. Content is siloed, hard to share and harder to repurpose for new mediums.
Meet CaaS, the future of content management.
While most businesses are struggling to manage all of the content needed to attract, convert and delight customers, there are some exciting new content as a service companies making it easier to manage and repurpose content.
Companies such as Prismic or Contentful are empowering marketers, developers and other business units to access, manipulate and share content from a centralized location. These platforms allow businesses to manage content in an agnostic way.
This means that content can be formatted so that it looks best on any given channel, making it easier to provide an omnichannel experience to prospects and customers.
We’re living in an omnichannel world.
According to research cited by Cybra, the opportunity cost of not embracing an omnichannel approach is 10 percent lost revenue. To bring the point home even further, Google found that the average generation Zer uses five screens to consume content.
For brands to remain relevant, business people simply must embrace an omnichannel approach when engaging with prospects and customers. Content as a service becomes all the more important when brands need to maintain a consistent message across devices.
Personalization is the next big marketing technique.
Prospects and customers are beginning to expect personalized experiences. Janrain reportsthat 74 percent of internet users get frustrated when presented with irrelevant things. Prospects will reward brands that are able to successfully personalize content. Forrester finds that 77 percent of customers will pay more when brands accurately make personalized purchasing recommendations.
Content-as-a-service platforms have the ability to help brands do personalization better. For example, if a website or mobile app can draw upon centralized content to select the most appropriate information for a specific user, brands can provide a better experience.
CaaS platforms coupled with personalization tools such as Optimizely, or those offered by marketing automation platforms, can create tailored customer journeys without needing to create an endless supply of unique content.
Getting data on content consumption.
How does similar (or the same) piece of content perform across different channels? Does this content resonate with your audience? Typically it is difficult for content marketers to answer these questions.
One version of content could be hosted on a blog CMS, another version could live in an email template. With content as a service platforms, it’s easier for content creators to understand how content is performing. Content insights can be centralized. Updates made to content based on centralized insights can be immediately pushed across channels with just the click of a button.
The way we consume content is changing, and swiftly. As consumers, we prefer personalized content provided by Netflix over cable. We want instantaneous, relevant content experiences at our fingertips, and we have little patience for brands that fall short of these expectations. We reward brands that provide an omnichannel shopping experience, and we consume content through many different screens.
Article credit : www.entrepreneur.com
The corporate world can be cold and unforgiving so it is important to learn from those who have been successful before a startup launches.
The best lessons that can be learned are from large companies that started out small but then grew into a corporate juggernaut. Regardless of how successful a company has become there were still growing pains during their infancy despite what some founders might say.
Learning what not to do is also another thing that can be learned like avoiding any customer service tactics that even remotely resemble any used by Comcast.
The following are lessons that can be learned from huge corporations that can help a startup run more efficiently.
Any Online Glasses or Contact Provider
There are so many providers of contacts and glasses online that it can be hard to differentiate one from the other. The biggest lesson that can be learned from these ecommerce companies is that of using coupons in an effective way.
The easy way to get contacts would be to order them directly through the optometrist but it is not the most cost effective way. The rebates and coupons that many of these companies offer help close the deal quite quickly as everyone loves $100 rebate for getting something that they needed anyway.
The future of coupons is bright as many aggregators are the first website visited when a buyer wants to save money.
Facebook has simply been killing it for the past decade without any signs of slowing down. The largest lesson that can be learned from this social media royalty is that of continuing to grow a business besides the main product.
Mark Zuckerberg has done a great job in investing in other forms of technology that could become beneficial. The Oculus Rift was one investment that had many people scratching their heads but now it is one of the leaders in virtual reality gaming.
Instagram was another investment that many people disagreed with when it was bought for $1 billion. The value of this now is around $35 billion which is a great return on an investment and helped Facebook corner another huge portion of the social media industry.
The employees at Facebook are also encouraged to work on their own special interest projects with hopes that another huge idea will make the company even more money.
Airbnb has taken the world by storm with a large portions of countries around the world feeling the economic impact of the website. This great idea not only generates money for users but has become the main way that many millennials book lodging as the rates cannot be beaten.
Mistakes have been made by the brand but they responded incredibly with the CEO and Twitter account both apologizing for a user’s home being trashed by people who weren’t appropriately vetted by the company. The most important thing that can be learned from this company is that of not being satisfied.
Despite their incredible success they have continued to do a great job marketing and building a positive brand image in the eyes of consumers. For a company that was rejected quite a few times when trying to find funding, this scrappy mentality makes more sense.
As you can see there are lessons about business all around us and large companies usually write about their story. Take the time to research companies that you as a founder look up to and you will be able to find a lesson from there as well!
Article credit : www.startupgrind.com
Startups will often go through several rounds of financing before they are able to generate enough revenue to finance their operations. The earliest funding round, the seed stage, is a critical period when money is needed to develop the business and prove the new product or service works before it is sold to consumers. In recent years, we have seen the emergence of “open source” term sheets and related equity seed investment documents that are designed to make a startup’s first financing as fast and efficient as possible.
What Are Seed Investments And How Do They Differ From Series A?
Seed capital is the initial capital used when starting a business, covering early-stage expenses like market research or product development. A seed investment usually refers to a company’s first round of financing from third party investors, which can include friends and family or even more experienced investors, such as individual angel investors or venture capital funds. Seed investments under $1 million will often use convertible loan notes – short-term debt that converts into equity – or equity seed investment documentation. The securities issued are sometimes referred to as Series Seed or Series AA.
If the seed round is about finding a business model, Series A is about executing that business model at scale. Series A usually comes after the company has shown some track record and the investment amounts are larger, which results in higher investor ownership levels.
What Is Equity Seed Investment Documentation?
These documents are, in effect, stripped-down term sheets and related documents that are designed to be less complicated, saving startups time and money in legal fees. They tend to have simple terms and be less extensive than Series A documentation, while imposing fewer restrictions on the company. There are several sets of “open source” equity seed financing documents available, including:
- TechStars Model Seed Funding Documents
- Y Combinator Series AA Equity Financing Documents
- Founders Institute Plain Preferred Term Sheet
- Series Seed Financing Documents
What Does Equity Seed Documentation Include?
While each set of seed financing documents are different, they typically provide a 1x liquidation preference (the right of one class of shareholders to be paid ahead of other classes in the event the company is liquidated) as well as limited investor protections. The documents also tend to include certain participation rights and information rights, among other things.
For example, the Series Seed Financing Documents, released in 2010, includes future rights, which state that holders of Series Seed are entitled to better rights that future investors might get in a future equity financing. It also includes a right of first offer on future financings, as well as information rights that entitle the investor to receive annual and quarterly financial statements, and a seat at the board. The Series Seed Financing Documents are somewhat unique from some other equity seed financing documents in that they also require the company to pay $10,000 for investors’ counsel.
When Should Equity Seed Documentation Be Used?
There are times when an investor is investing a relatively small amount and may prefer to purchase equity as opposed to convertible debt. These types of situations might lend themselves to the use of the equity seed documentation. Larger seed financings (i.e., $500,000 and above) will often use Series A-style documents, which are more robust and include terms not found in equity seed documentation (including more extensive investor protections).
For example, Series A investment documents will include registration rights, give the investor the ability to require the company to facilitate the resale of the shares. They also typically include anti-dilution protection, as well as more comprehensive protective provisions and representations and warranties. Some of these terms, like anti-dilution protection, are of limited value during this stage of financing if the investors believe the chances of a lower priced round in the future is remote, so their being omitted from equity seed documentation isn’t necessarily a reason for concern. Of course, no one can predict the future, that is why we typically see anti-dilution protection in most financing rounds.
Article credit : www.startupblog.com