Holistic content marketing solutions don’t begin and end with the words on a given page. Thoughtful content strategy starts long before any writing happens. Content calendars, customer journey maps, archetyping, brand guides and personas are all foundational components of content marketing strategy that ensure brand alignment and create the means to reach audiences with the right message at the right time. And when it comes to not only knowing your audience, but knowing them intimately, personas are the perfect place to start.

We can all agree that good content begins with good inputs and personas are nothing if not an exercise in translating audience assumptions into audience insights and understanding. Some brands require extremely robust persona work to support effective content strategy, while others can leverage relatively lean personas to validate editorial calendars and plan everything from blog posts to social media updates and case studies.

Trellis Legal Intelligence: Show Them We Built This for Them

Trellis Legal Intelligence is in the business of helping legal teams build smarter cases. Trellis’ intelligent platform makes state trial data searchable for the first time — ultimately saving legal teams time and effort while creating tremendous insight to how judges rule.

The platform was built by litigators for litigators, so both the B2C and B2B content marketing efforts in the brand’s earliest days were guided by personal experience and insight. For Trellis, persona development was less about demystifying its target audience and more about documenting and refining known audience traits for future team members who would not have the same personal experiences to color their understanding of prospects.

Through the course of a persona workshop, the Trellis and Communications Strategy Group (CSGⓇ) teams were able to draw on personal experience and sales insights to create a fairly comprehensive portrait of its primary personas. That information was supplemented by research to create a set of personas on the individual and firm level to guide content creation and marketing decisions as Trellis geared up to expand its offerings, team, client base and brand awareness.

Modiv: Launch New Offerings to New Audiences with Authority

For Modiv, a real estate investment platform, the challenge was altogether greater. After an extensive rebrand, Modiv launched with additional offerings that would not only expand its portfolio, but also its list of target audiences.

While Modiv knew its existing investor base very well, the host of new potential investors that came with the new offerings created a need for significant data collection and research to support the development of comprehensive personas. Not only did the additional portfolio offerings bring new potential investors to the company, the inclusion of accredited investors brought new regulations and additional complexity that had to be addressed in every piece of content and digital marketing.

Modiv and CSG knew that SEC regulations, especially those addressing some of the target audiences, would have to be primary considerations, but with new offerings and a new brand to launch, it was not an option to tap existing customers for insights. Instead, the teams worked with stakeholders and conducted third-party research and data to compile working personas. After seeking out research about the demographics that were most important to Modiv’s expansion, including their expectations and needs with regard to financial decisions, the next challenge came in reconciling those external inputs with internal insights. Following significant groundwork, the teams rendered data-informed personas with enough depth to support the creation of content and ads that could pass muster according to numerous regulations.

The resulting personas supported and informed relevant content across every component of the marketing ecosystem — at launch and beyond.

Successful content marketing in Denver (our home base!) and everywhere else requires thoughtful planning and proven strategies. It’s the kind of work we love to do because it makes a difference for our clients and their customers.

For more from the minds behind CSG, explore our work.