It’s about the Quality, not the Quantity!
Is it fair to say that we are drowning in data, information and documents? According to SanDisk, the volume of business data in the world doubles every 1.2 years! Content is easier than ever to produce, but the random scattering of content across legacy files and folders has created a veritable digital landfill! There are numerous reports that validate the fact that the average business associate/sales rep spends 6 to 8 hours per week searching for content. Legacy file servers have become the equivalent of a black hole. That is a huge drain on performance and productivity, while increasing cost and overhead to your bottom line.
Okay, let’s add another factor to this dismal report. On average, 75% of marketing content is ineffective and winds up being rewritten by the sales people it was intended for. This creates a big problem for many organizations, because there is a lack of consistency and continuity in the message, as well as the cost of having sales people doing something other than selling. Also, indicators are that over 50% of the sales and marketing communications have been found to not be relevant to your customers, so no wonder sales people rewrite them.
Marketing organizations are often measured on the amount or quantity of content, collateral or assets they produce, as opposed to the quality and effectiveness of those assets. The reason is that most organizations don’t have the tools or feedback loops in place to measure the effectiveness of those assets. So, they continue to crank out stuff that misses the target, gets rewritten or goes unused. In a recent survey of Marketing Managers, the #1 issue they have is their inability to create a meaningful ROI around what they create and produce. Is it any wonder? You can’t manage what you can’t measure.
As pointed out earlier, the amount of data, information, content, etc. doubles every 14 months! So, what we have is more and more content piling on top of older content, without a way to filter out what’s working and what isn’t. Organizations need to be able to identify when their assets have become outdated and no longer being used, so they can purge those assets and update, replace or delete them. Again, organizations need to have a way in which they can monitor what assets are being used and which ones aren’t. They also need to be able to have a rating system in place that identifies which assets are providing value to their users and which ones aren’t. Tools like CollaboRate™, for example, allow users to rate the assets they are provided with and then tell why they rated them the way they did, so the people who are responsible for creating those assets will know, with pin-point accuracy, what’s working and what isn’t. Also, when a user does a search with a system that uses a rating scale, then the best-of-the-best of the search results bubbles up to the top so users don’t waste time looking at content that has a low rating and is of little or no value.
Remember the old adage that “less is more”? Sales people would much rather have fewer high value assets, than just have more assets to search through. So, those organizations that provide a way in which sales people can tag and search for the information and assets they need will also find an increase in productivity. When you provide better quality content and assets, that are current and relevant, then the whole sales process becomes more productive and effective. If you have a system that allows users to provide feedback and rate those assets as to the quality and value they provide to them, then you will also have greater sales and marketing alignment. At least that’s the way I see it, what say you?