Key excerpt (with our bold)...
This means that the part of the mission that used to belong almost exclusively to sales is now shared between marketing and sales, with more and more of the responsibility shifted to marketing. That mission is to shape the buyer’s vision.
Beyond the intuitively clear sense of what a buyer’s vision is, it’s created by a set of assumptions about both the challenge the prospect is trying to solve and the critical capabilities that are necessary to solve that challenge. There are sales methodologies built around shaping the buyer’s journey. But if the bulk of the decision journey doesn’t happen with sales, then sales has a narrower than ever window in which to do this hard work.
This is largely what content marketing is all about — vision shaping through information. It’s for this reason that I call content marketing “the alchemy of intent”. A big part of vision shaping is framing the challenge or even identifying a challenge the prospect didn’t know they had, a “latent need” in the vernacular. Content marketing is about using various media to turn both latent and blatant need into an intent to buy, transforming it into a sellable need.