Officeworks amplification-first content marketing strategy

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Blog with business-wide support
By Susan Burchill, staffer. 16 November, 2017
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Since its first foray into blogging in 2015, Officeworks has recognised the opportunity content marketing brings: to conduct an ongoing conversation with customers about the topics and issues important to them.

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Streamlining the content strategy

The relaunch of its WorkWise blog in May 2017 marked a refining of Officeworks customer-centric strategy to focus squarely on small business. Based on consumer insights that showed running a small business is a unique journey, “made up of many small moments”, a new ad campaign and supporting content were created, aimed at highlighting that journey.

Given many small business owners don't have the support structure of their larger counterparts - HR team, marketing, finance, or business advisers - WorkWise operates as an adjunct to Officeworks product range, helping business owners navigate the daily challenges of running a business by offering helpful information, tips and advice. Articles cover four verticals: ‘Business basics’, ‘Grow and Lead’, ‘Productivity’ and ‘Workspace and wellbeing’.

As Officeworks national marketing manager Karl Winther said at the launch, “Officeworks hopes to inspire and support Australian small businesses in our own small way to make bigger things happen.” We asked content marketing manager Jamie Doyle for some insights into their blog and content marketing strategy.

Was there one particular champion in the business who pushed for it?

Our entire marketing leadership team have always been really strong champions of the hub and our content strategy, in particular, national marketing manager Karl Winther and national advertising and communications manager, Simon Davenport. They truly understand the role content plays in the marketing mix and the value of our long-term content strategy.

They truly understand the role content plays in the marketing mix and the value of our long-term content strategy.

What have been some of the most successful pieces of content so far and why?

Some of our best performing pieces are in the productivity space, which I think indicates that small business owners are really busy and juggling a lot of different roles. We’ve also seen a lot of interest in posts around social media and how to use social channels to grow your business. I think social media is a constantly-evolving area of marketing and relatively low-cost for small businesses, but it’s a huge time investment for business owners so they’re always interested in how they can get the most out of their channels and leverage them for business growth.

What’s your amplification strategy?

Our strategy is built around amplification first. We’re always considering how and where we will amplify our content before we start production. We’re trialling a range of channels, depending on the content and segment of our audience we’re targeting. LinkedIn has been a really strong channel for us this year, and with the introduction of video and some of their other new initiatives, I think this will continue to be a strong channel for WorkWise content.

What are your success measures for the content generally?

We’re really interested in engagement metrics and brand metrics, and we’ve worked closely with our content agency to create a robust engagement framework to measure the effectiveness of each piece of content we produce. But in addition to this, we’re also looking at the impacts of our content activity on our long-term brand metrics and it will be interesting to see how this shifts over the next few years.

What results are you expecting for the future?

Building a strong, connected and engaged audience is really important to us, and we’re looking forward to growing this community and really showing them how this content can help making bigger things happen for them and their businesses.

Does WorkWise have the support of the business overall, and how much does that help with its success?

Definitely. It’s really important to have the support of the business for the hub to be a success – and there’s a lot of knowledge and expertise we can tap into throughout the business, whether through our business specialists, merchandise team or store network. We’re continually looking for new ways to work with the business, and ways we can engage our retail team and our suppliers to create authentic, informative and useful content.

Which are some other blogs you admire?

In the small business space, American Express Open Forum is developing interesting content executions and targeted relevant storytelling. The other really interesting execution I’ve seen recently is HBF’s Direct Advice for Dads, which has really engaging and targeted content. It’s really inspiring to see Australian brands leading the way in this type of content marketing.

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When Susan was a youngster she didn't know what she wanted to be, but somehow she fell into advertising; then digital was invented so she worked on websites for a while. From there it was a small leap over to TV producing, scriptwriting, promo writing, and some copywriting.... Then when content marketing became a 'thing', she somehow fell into that. It's worked out ok so far - luckily she's always landed on soft things.