Intel’s Pam Didner On Content Marketing Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned
Pam Didner is Intel’s global integrated marketing strategist, a contributor to the Huffington Post and a blogger about marketing and content at Pamdidner.com. Ebyline asked her about the future of branded content, Intel’s own efforts including blogs such as iq by Intel and Intel Free Press—and creating a personal brand alongside your professional one. The following interview has been edited and condensed.

 

Pam Didner

Pam Didner

Ebyline: Hi Pam, can you tell us about your role at Intel and how you see the content marketing landscape?

Didner: Intel sells products to over 100 countries and we have marketing teams on the ground in over 50 countries. My job is to write that global go-to-market plan. Of course, I don’t do it alone, it’s a collaboration. There is a quote by [economist] Herbert Simon…it was not directed content marketing but it summarizes the landscape today: “A wealth of information creates a poverty of attention.” It’s a huge challenge for brands to wade through. The customer’s attention span is this short. The secret is actually finding your niche, your opportunities, and removing the barriers.

 

Ebyline: Do you have any tips for brands that are struggling to get their message heard?

Didner: We are still working through that, to be honest with you. What I have found is in creating content there are a couple of key elements. One is the creative: the creative needs to be very catchy. Catchy headlines, catchy taglines. I’m not saying that sensational news sells but to some extent it does. A lot of people feel pressured, they have to generate a lot of content. Don’t. My take on this is less is more. Find the time to generate one or two pieces of content and re-purpose those.

 

Ebyline: Another challenge we often hear about from people managing brands is creating a brand identity. Do you think a brand’s personality grows in an organic fashion or is it influenced by content marketing?

Didner: It’s actually a combination of both. We are the stewards of our brands. It’s our job to determine who we are and what our company’s voice is and then the personality will naturally come through. Then let the customer be the judge. If you’re doing a very good job the perception your customer has shouldn’t be very far off. If you create content that really doesn’t match your persona it will certainly create a perceptional difference.

 

Ebyline: Do you have any advice for brands that are just getting started about how to build trust and authority with content?

Didner: When I started in the field of marketing there was no social media. It was focused on TV commercials, billboards, radio, the mass traditional media. It was more of a push marketing effort. We need to think from the perspective of are we providing value to the audience? Are you teaching them something they don’t know? Are you challenging them? Are you just trying to entertain them? Building a relationship is a long-term commitment, just like blogging. You have to do it day in and day out, there is no shortcut.

 

Ebyline: Can you tell us a little about how you and Intel measure the return on investment of content?

Didner: I don’t believe anybody has cracked that nut. I think we are still adjusting our metrics as we go. The success metrics for content marketing are really determined by your business objectives. Are you doing content marketing to generate leads? Then you content marketing metrics need to tie in to the number of leads. Are you doing content marketing to build awareness of your brand? Then you need to somehow tie back your content marketing effort with your brand equity. The hardest part a lot of people tend to overlook…is once that metric is determined we’re not necessarily looking at the back-end processes to determine do we even have that [data] to validate or support it on a regular basis?

 

Ebyline: How do you add value as an individual blogger in an ecosystem that has a lot of noise?

Didner: I’m not necessarily thinking about breaking through the clutter; it’s about sharing my personal thoughts. I learn marketing through doing it and reading and working at Intel. I try to apply some of that learning with Intel [to Pamdidner.com] but at the same time I have my own thoughts and I try to share that on my own blog. I don’t make a huge effort to differentiate between Intel and Pam. I think I do it more or less for myself.

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About Peter C. Beller

Peter C. Beller is director of content at Ebyline. He was previously a staff writer for Forbes and has freelanced for numerous publications. He can be reached at peter@ebyline.com.

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