Archana Chopda

Former Head of Marketing | Modern Work at Microsoft

Archana Chopda on defining a great content strategy

A great content strategy is a well-planned and thoughtfully executed approach to creating, distributing, and managing content that aligns with business goals, engages the target audience, and drives desired outcomes. It goes beyond random content creation and encompasses a strategic framework that guides content development, distribution channels, and performance measurement.

In this conversation, Archana Chopda, Former Head of Marketing | Modern Work at Microsoft defines what great content looks like and how to build a successful content strategy. Let’s dive in.

1. Tell us about your journey till now. 

My foray into marketing was somewhat accidental. While pursuing my studies in commerce and accounting, a friend asked for my assistance with an advertisement for a listing catalog. That experience piqued my interest in the field.

I found myself asking fundamental questions about the target audience and the value proposition of the product. Seeing the advertisement later on a magazine's back cover was an epiphany; I recognized marketing as my true passion.

Subsequent projects with a creative agency further solidified this passion. Although my formal education was in accounting and commerce, I pursued a diploma in marketing communications. Over the years, I've evolved with the industry, transitioning from traditional advertising methods to contemporary digital strategies.

2. What is great content and what is the right content strategy to set up for a particular brand?

Exceptional content is adaptable, encompassing the entirety of a consumer's journey. From thought leadership pieces addressing industry trends to product-specific content that drives revenue, content's versatility is its strength. Importantly, content is not just pre-sale; it also aids post-sale in ensuring customers maximize their product's potential. Its ability to be repurposed gives it longevity, making it a solution to many marketing challenges.

3. What would be some tips for nailing a content strategy?

First and foremost, a comprehensive understanding of the market is essential. One must assess if the market requires assistance, if there's awareness of the specific product, or even if there's a genuine need for it. When faced with an overcrowded market full of similar competitors, how can you stand out?

Engage with your sales teams to grasp the current industry trends, challenges, and the specific needs and growth strategies of clients. How can your product or technology support client growth?

By aligning these insights with your company's objectives, you can identify five to ten key themes to inform your content strategy. It's crucial to remember that marketing strategies need to be agile. As the market environment, including economic factors, constantly evolves, so should your approach.

Everything in marketing is dependent on your present situation; it is real-time. Therefore, what may have worked a month ago may no longer be effective.

4. What function, in your opinion, does content play in creating a brand's trust and authority with its target audience?

Marketers are entrusted to craft compelling narratives over time, ensuring sustained engagement and promoting company growth. If you don't take ownership of this narrative, someone else will, potentially in a manner misalign with your vision, harming your brand's reputation. Genuine audience engagement and trust stem primarily from your business content. Without this, you risk letting AI or competitors define your brand. Take charge of your market narrative.

The only way an audience can relate to what you're trying to say is via content for your business.

5. What do you think will happen to the market over the next few years, in your opinion?

Given the increasing prominence of AI and ongoing innovations, the landscape of marketing is set to undergo significant transformations.

Over the next three to five years, marketing will evolve more toward an active sales role. Data suggests that 8 out of 10 customers will already have a product or solution in mind before being approached by sales. This underscores the power of impactful marketing, particularly the rising influence of content marketing.

The integration of artificial intelligence into content marketing will be a game-changer. AI's ability to analyze data and automate processes will empower businesses to craft more effective content strategies. This will enable the delivery of personalized content on a larger scale, enhancing both engagement and conversions.

In conclusion, the prospects for content marketing are bright. As businesses continue to lean on digital channels for engagement, content marketing, augmented by tools like AI and personalized content, will remain pivotal in connecting with target audiences.

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Global Marketing Leaders 2023
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Global Marketing Leaders 2023 by Pepper Content is an exclusive curation of the brightest minds who have revolutionized the world of marketing. These visionaries have pushed the boundaries, disrupted the status quo, and transformed the way we approach content and marketing. Check out the full exhibit to be informed and inspired by the insights shared by these trailblazers.