To create a strategy to communicate to chief procurement officers (CPOs) that procurement and supply chain optimisation is key to competitive advantage, while positioning Efficio as the partner of choice for improvement.
Efficio enlisted Grist via a stringent selection process, and we began by performing a ‘content audit’ to identify the best channels for its content marketing programme.
Hosting a structured half-day workshop allowed us to document the key communications objectives, and provided valuable insight on audience profiles and competitive differentiation. The exercise revealed that a platform from which to inform, engage and inspire CPOs and other senior decision makers around procurement and supply chain optimisation was a business priority.
From here, Grist drew up a detailed plan to produce two separate streams of content: a compelling client magazine and a series of articles focused on services and sectors. The strategy was clear: the magazine articles would draw readers in, the more service-oriented content give them a reason to call.
Global client magazine The Source would serve as a showcase of Efficio’s thought leadership - fresh thinking, valuable insight and practical advice which help this senior audience run their businesses more effectively.
We recommended commissioning subject-specialist journalists with a unique understanding of procurement and supply chain issues to bring independent authority to the magazine’s articles, and also stressed the importance of setting up a steering committee to help the programme gain traction internally: input from Efficio specialists would be vital to the programme’s success. Employees from across Europe contributed to editorial meetings, suggesting topics with wide appeal and contacting key clients for interviews.
Our initial strategy day also identified that more business-oriented content would better engage with clients and prospects, and the first issue of The Source included a client interview and accompanying photoshoot at St Pancras International with Hitachi Rail, as well as an in-depth case study with Tryg, a leading Scandinavian insurer.
Through its work with Grist, Efficio was able to recognise that while supply chain leaders often know what needs to be done, they struggle with the execution of these ideas. So wherever possible, content drew on ‘real world’ client examples, with a focus on how companies can overcome the organisational barriers to effective execution.
Features included a review of whether procurement should have a place on the board, and how the first 100 days of a new chief procurement officer can often define the success of the role. There was also a masterclass in managing temporary labour spend, an overview of latest technology solutions and a functional health check for new CFOs.
In a survey of those who downloaded the inaugural issue, 94% found The Source to be of interest and said that they would recommend the publication to others.
A number of respondents expressed surprise at the quality and relevance of the content, claiming that articles had generated discussion and served as ‘food for thought’ around key issues affecting the procurement industry, and that they looked forward to wider debate on the topics.
Another commented, “Beautiful layout. Good content. Not a magazine full of content paid by advertisers. Well done.”
Efficio COO Alex Klein has witnessed a positive industry reaction to its updated content marketing programme, and attributes a significant difference to audience engagement to its new magazine. “Showing our commitment to understanding the broader procurement issues has been the main ingredient of what we believe has been a successful launch,” he added.
Now on the fourth issue, The Source continues to build relationships with clients and prospects, helping to communicate the full extent of Efficio’s expertise and, with a new Grist-designed website in place, generating a regular flow of qualified sales leads.