How content marketing is helping Philips move into healthcare

Blake Cahill, global head of digital and social at Philips, explains how content marketing is playing a key role in the brand’s transformation into a healthcare company.

Content marketing is helping Philips to establish itself as a thought leader in healthcare
Content marketing is helping Philips to establish itself as a thought leader in healthcare

Why is content marketing important to the Philips brand?

We’re at a transformational period in our history at Philips, moving from a company known for its TVs, radios and lightbulbs to a global player in the healthcare space. Content marketing is a great way to become a thought leader in that space and build trust and loyalty with both consumers and healthcare professionals who may not have traditionally associated this with Philips before.

Do you feel Philips is seeing a strong return from its content marketing?

Content marketing such as our Future Health Index thought leadership hub or our consumer-focused programmes show a clear example of the gains from content marketing when done well. That said, any brands looking for immediate ROI should steer clear of content marketing programmes as their main purpose is to establish long-term relationships. As a company that’s over 125 years old, that’s fine for Philips – but it goes against what traditional marketers expect.

Do you agree with Marketing Week columnist Mark Ritson’s recent argument that the world of content marketing is becoming “cluttered”? What can brands do with their content to help cut through this clutter?

It’s true that companies of all sizes are creating way too much content without any idea of how to use it or whether there’s even an audience for it. But you have to understand the definition of content marketing which, at Philips, we summarise as being a long-term programme delivering consistent and high quality content that provides value or utility to the end-user. If you provide quality content that adds value to the lives of your audience, how can there be too much of it?

Because of this I would tend to disagree with Ritson and say that just because there’s too much bad content in the world doesn’t mean that content marketing in itself is bad.

READ MORE: The big debate – Is content marketing really nonsense?

How does producing content help brands actually sell their products and services to customers?

That always depends on the objective of the programme. Just like email marketing or advertising, there’s no one-size-fits-all content marketing objective. You need to ask yourself why you’re creating the content and use observable and measurable habits of the visitors on your content hubs to inform the way you write product marketing collateral in future.

A great example is a recent content-driven campaign we executed for World Sleep Day which immediately generated multiple sales of our sleep apnea solutions even though the content was focused on awareness and education around the issue.

These examples demonstrate that consumers are more likely to buy from a brand they like and trust. In a world with so much marketing and corporate chatter, content marketing is one differentiator in making you the brand that consumers like and trust.

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