Francois Mathieu on Content Marketing

This is the part of a series of interviews with B2B marketers. In this post we're talking with Francois Mathieu from Uberflip about content marketing.

Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Francois Mathieu and I'm the Marketing Programs Manager at Uberflip. My role is to find and evaluate the best channels to reach our target customers and generate demand for our product.

I am also responsible for the lead management process once a new lead is created in our marketing automation system. I maintain the programs that segment, score and qualify those leads until they reach a certain point where our sales team takes over.

Francois Mathieu at the Inbound conference. Photo courtesy of  Esther Mathieu Photography .

Francois Mathieu at the Inbound conference. Photo courtesy of Esther Mathieu Photography.

How did you get into marketing?
Honestly, I never expected to become a marketer, and never got any formal education on the matter.

When I was younger, I wanted to play music and tour on a bus. Looking back, I was better at the business side of it than at the artistic part. At age 17, I was calling concert venues across the province to book my own concerts, and I was forming street teams over IRC chats to promote the shows. That was marketing, but I had no idea at the time.

One of my first professional jobs was in sales, and then it led to a marketing role. Sales was great for practicing one-to-one marketing and learn how to counter objections. Even though telemarketing sucked as a job, it provided me with invaluable experience.

After working for several years in database marketing at a major bank, I got into B2B marketing for the first time at Uberflip. No matter what people say, B2B marketing is very different than marketing to consumers and I've learned a lot since I joined the company.

Give us a 30-second pitch on Uberflip.
Uberflip is a slick content marketing platform that allows marketers like you and me to manage their B2B marketing content: anything from blogs, white papers, to webinar videos, etc. It gives you total control over your company's content library so you can update the content, the lead gen forms and the overall experience without much technical skills needed. The best part is that Uberflip integrates with all the major marketing automation vendors, so all the lead contact details get synced to trigger your automated nurture campaigns in real time.

We hear a lot about content marketing, how do you define it?
All content is marketing when done right. Increasingly also, all marketing has to be content marketing. People are now bombarded with so many offers and noise that if you can't provide any more value past the hyperlinked call to action, you just can't compete out there.

You're a prolific Twitter user, recently named one of the top B2B marketing influencers. You share some of the best marketing content. How do you find it? What tools or techniques do you use?
I don't work really hard to find content, I use two great apps: Quibb and Nuzzel. Quibb is a professional network to share and discuss the latest articles. I receive a digest from Quibb every day with the best links from around my network. Nuzzel is an app that alerts me when all my friends are sharing the same article on Twitter and I might be missing out. On top of those apps, I receive a few email newsletters that cover specific industries I'm interested in.

"Create something that is 10 times better than anything else."

Where should people start with content marketing?
The first step would be to layout a strategy and set some goals. What do you want to accomplish with your content? Who is it for? What are the deliverables required to achieve your goals? I don't see any other way to get started than with a plan. If you go in all the directions at once, your efforts won't pay off.

I would also suggest to figure out what is your unfair advantage. What can you bring to table that is unique, that none of your competitors can replicate because they lack the resources or the know-how? Then create something that is 10 times better than anything else.

Where do you find the balance between creating and sharing first-party content vs. third-party content?
When you are just getting started, content curation is a good way to build an audience on social media or using an email newsletter. By becoming a go-to source for great content links, you might be able to generate some traffic.

The benefit of creating first-party content though is that on top of generating traffic, you will gain authority in your field, and it will become much, much easier to drive the desired outcome out of your audience. Once you create a lot of content, you should still keep on sharing third-party content that is valuable for your audience, but don't hesitate to recirculate your most popular posts regularly so you get more mileage out of them.

Where does content marketing fit in the buyer's journey? How do you decide what content goes where?
Content fits at every stage of the buyer's journey. What changes is the media that will best communicate the message depending on the stage.

Maybe a blog post will best showcase your in-depth knowledge on a certain topic to attract readers, but when time comes to making an important buying decision, your prospect might appreciate a visual comparison chart.

What would you like to see change in B2B content marketing?
Thank you for asking so I can share how much I dislike the acronym "H2H".

"Does your content generate revenue?"

What should you look for when measuring content performance?
You should look at the bottom line as much as possible. Does your content generate revenue?

Different pieces of content might play different roles during the buyer's journey, but ultimately all of them should help either convert or retain customers.

I know that sometimes it's a bit hard to calculate the ROI of one piece of content in the short term, especially for long sales cycles. But in the meantime there are other metrics that can help like leads generated or assists on leads generated.

Who should marketers be reading or following?
It's a tough question because there's a ton of great marketers to follow. If I had to pick a few marketing blogs I'd say Andrew ChenApril DunfordBrian BalfourLincoln Murphy, and Noah Kagan.

What's your favourite 90s dance song? 
I know it's not a dance song but since it was on Dance Mix '93, I'm allowed to pick "Jump Around" by House Of Pain.