Whether your brand chooses to take a gamble on controversial ads that prompt an on-line dialogue or curate user-generated content to define its social presence, there is no doubt that content strategies must be as revenue-generating as they are socially activating.

Like any marketing tactic, challenges are inevitable when creating content that resonates with your brand, customer and budget. Members recently discussed two challenges – how to manage non-working media costs and how to develop a B2B media strategy – at the LA Chapter Roundtable Discussion, led by Dee McLaughlin, VP of Global Marketing at Forever 21.

How to Control Non-Working Media Costs

McLaughlin shared that Forever 21 has recently increased their user-generated content to be 90% of all their marketing content. The result? Revenue has doubled and, each time users add #F21xMe to their posts, their revenue and social following increase even more.

By allowing millennials to be an active part of the brand, they are “feeding their feed” to buy products and share them with friends and followers via social media. However, McLaughlin also noted that the production and management costs of all this content are rising at alarming rates.

One solution CMOs discussed was moving content curation and creation in-house, noting that talent in agencies is becoming more vendorized. Therefore, top creatives aren’t as drawn exclusively to agency work as in the past, allowing for marketers to pull great team members into their organization.

Judy Hackett, CMO of Emerging Business at Dun and Bradstreet, said her company created an entire in-house agency that is managed financially like an external one, allowing them to stay on budget and still get great creative output and bottom-line results for the brand.

For Campbell Fresh, they didn’t want a start/stop campaign, but rather a fluid, ongoing creative strategy (and team) – one that would be as nimble and adaptable as their brand – said Suzanne Ginestro, Chief Marketing and Innovation Officer of Campbell Fresh, a division of the Campbell Soup Company.

She searched for a long time until she found their current creative team that keeps the company up-to-date with ongoing trends – like consumers’ concern about where their food is coming from – and maintains a high-quality, consistent content strategy.

Overcoming B2B Content Challenges

For brands in the B2B space, content can be regulated and strategy may look quite different from that of B2C companies. So, marketers must get creative when thinking about how they can grow their online voice. Looking internally at existing resources and team members may be a great place to start.

Dun and Bradstreet capitalized on this idea of employees activating content in a B2B company. They partnered with SocialChorus, an employee engagement app, to highlight pre-approved content and incentivize them to share with their own networks. The partnership allowed employees to actively participate in an online discussion and grow brand awareness in an organic way, resulting in a high-quality dialogue that was on-brand and engaging.

CMOs must always be looking for new ways to overcome these challenges – leveraging digital media to interact with other businesses, employees and consumers. By harnessing the power of their own internal creative teams and encouraging employees to be the vehicle for social discussion, brands can build a dynamic content strategy that is equal parts creative, engaging and within budget.