Content Marketing And Its Overlooked Ability To Influence Customer Experience

 

I am an idea person.

Insights come to me all of the time and they can come from surprising sources.

But on this particular morning that I am about to tell you about, I didn’t expect to get an important insight into the power of content marketing.

I was just expecting to eat breakfast.

Let me explain…

I woke up one Saturday morning and learned that my wife had made breakfast for my sons.

As I came stumbling into the kitchen in a half-awake stupor, she asked me if I wanted some “flapjacks”.

I thought, “That was weird. I’ve never heard her use that word before.”
So I replied, “You mean ‘pancakes’, right?”

She said, “No, They’re flapjacks. Actually they’re called ‘Kodiak Cakes’ and they’re really good!” (My kids, who were already sitting at the table and eating them, agreed that they were really good.)

I said, “Kodiak Cakes? What are those?”

She then set the box on the table and said, “Read the back…”

kodiak cakes and content marketing

I grabbed the box and flipped it over to see what she was talking about.

And there on the back on the box I found this amazing story

Years ago, flapjacks were the hearty mainstay of frontiersmen from the frigid Yukon to the wilds of Alaska, and from the Rocky Mountains to the High Sierras.

These rugged mountain-men and homesteaders relied on a traditional flapjack that combined the rich, substantial taste of whole grain wheat with the light mellow taste of whole grain oats.

Although the old-timers knew of the excellent taste and abundant energy they received from their daily flapjacks, they didn’t fully realize that they had stumbled onto a superb nutritional combination.

Their flapjacks contained a powerful source of carbohydrates, protein and fiber – all with very little fat. Since then, the original flapjack has quietly disappeared from North American tables.

Today, few people even know that the frontier flapjack and the ordinary pancake are not the same.

Many are now discovering for the first time that the original flap-jack tastes a whole lot better than the lifeless creations that commonly pass for pancakes these days.

At Baker Mills, we set out to restore the flapjack tradition.

In the process, we soon realized we had to get serious about ingredients – real taste and real nutrition demand real ingredients.

The old recipe could not be compromised for profit.

Inexpensive fillers such as bleached flour, white sugar, vegetable shortening and artificial additives that have taken over so many baking products were definitely out of the question.

Only with a commitment to use the original ingredients could we restore this lost tradition.

We believe we have made good on our commitment with Kodiak Cakes, using only the finest American wheat and Canadian oats.

Kodiak Cakes, are not for the fainthearted, but for those who, like the old frontiersmen exploring and settling untamed wildernesses, require nutrition, vitality, and taste.

——

Wow. I couldn’t believe what I had just read.

I had never heard of flapjacks described in this way.

It was a history lesson, a story, and an amazing invitation that was “not for the fainthearted.”

I never knew there was a difference between flapjacks and pancakes, but now I did.

Not only that, I knew what made these flapjacks so special.

 

After reading the box, I had to try them.

And so when the next hot batch was ready and placed on the table, I made my move and snagged a batch off of the plate – before my boys swarmed in for them.

I put some butter on them and poured the syrup over them.

I was now ready for my first bite.

I plunged the side of my fork into the stack and wiggle it so I could cut off a small wedge of the stack to try.

I then stabbed the wedge with my fork and popped it into my mouth.

They WERE really good – just like my wife, my sons, and the box said they would be!

I seriously think they’re some of the best “pancakes” – oops, I mean “flapjacks” – that I’ve ever had from a box.

As I finished eating my first plate of Kodiak Cakes, I realized I had just experienced one of the often overlooked powers that great content marketing has.

 

Content Marketing Changes Your Customer’s Experience

When we usually think of content marketing, we usually think of it in terms of its “pre-purchasing” power.

In other words, we usually focus on its ability to influence prospects BEFORE they buy (i.e. by drawing attention to your company, by encouraging them to know, like, and trust you, etc.).

But the revelation that I got that Saturday morning during breakfast was the impact of content marketing’s “post-purchasing” power.

This is the overlooked power that great content marketing has…

Content marketing has the power to not only sell your product or service, but to BOOST your customer’s experience (and pleasure) with you product or service.

 

3 Secrets Baker Mills Uses to Tap into the Post-Purchasing Power of Content Marketing

The copy written on the back of the Kodiak Cakes box is so good I’m tempted to take it apart sentence by sentence.

But I won’t. 🙂

Instead, let me just point out three important lessons you can learn from the makers of Kodiak Cakes.

1. Don’t just create content for your ads, blog posts, podcasts, etc.

Don’t limit your content to the these pre-purchase avenues. Instead, create content that will be featured on your products themselves (or on/in the sales copy or sales scripts you use to sell your services).

Baker Mills didn’t waste the space on that box that their flapjacks come in. They harnessed it by filling it with content and story. 

Its Impact: This drew me in and made me care more about the product.

 

2. Tell stories that tap into the history of the type of product or service you offer.

Tell the story of how your type of product or service began to be offered to people. Paint the picture of its impact and its intrigue. Point out the good, the bad, and the ugly of how your type of product or service came to be and how it has evolved over the years.

Baker Mills explained things I never knew: what the difference was between pancakes and flapjacks, what type of people ate them, what made them flavorful and good for your health, etc.

Its Impact: This me gave information and categories I didn’t have before. This gave me criteria I would now use to judge and compare every other pancake mix. It also created intrigue and context for what I was about to experience.

 

3. Tell stories that tap into the specific history of the unique product or service you offer.

Explain your origin story. Tell them why your company offers the unique product or service that you do. Paint a clear picture of how your product is different, better, etc. Be descriptive in telling your customers what it will be like to experience your product and service.

Baker Mills told me they weren’t just concerned about profit, but they cared about taste and authenticity. They were committed to using the original ingredients and carrying on the tradition of the frontiersmen. And they explained how they only used the finest ingredients.

Its Impact: This caused me to experience Kodiak Cakes before I even tasted them. It made me an ally of Kodiak Cakes. It even challenged me to be like one of the rugged and brave frontiersmen who explored and settled the untamed wilderness.

 

Do you see how these three things impacted my breakfast that morning?

I wasn’t just eating pancakes. I was eating flapjacks.

And they weren’t just any old flapjacks.

They were flapjacks influenced by the tradition of the frontiersmen. They were flapjacks with the emphasis on real flavor and real ingredients.

That created meaning, anticipation, and the sense of adventure to my regular, old breakfast experience.

 

How This Could Backfire

Now don’t get me wrong.

You still need a good product or service. Kodiak Cakes really are great flapjacks.

You must have a great product or service, if you plan on using the above three “secrets”.

Why?

Because great content marketing that is used in the above ways to promote a BAD product or service will just make a bad product or service seem even WORSE.

But great content marketing that is used in the above ways to promote a GREAT product or service will make a great product or service seem even BETTER.

Apply these three “secrets” to your business today.

If a company that makes flapjack mix can use these methods, then so can you.

 

P.S. If Kodiak Cakes sound like something you want to try, then you can learn more about them on their website: KodiakCakes.com.

 

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Scott Aughtmon
I’m author of the book 51 Content Marketing Hacks. I am also a regular contributor to ContentMarketingInstitute.com and I am the person behind the popular infographic 21 Types of Content We Crave.

I’m a business strategist, consultant, content creation specialist, and speaker. I’ve been studying effective marketing and business methods (both online and offline) since 1999.

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