How to Create a Culture Where Content Marketing Thrives

Insights from what was once small pilot project that grown into a multi-award-winning publication and is influencing the entire organization to think differently about content.

When Dusty DiMercurio began his work at Autodesk, he had a bold vision of what was possible for the design-and-engineering software company. To win over allies, however, Dusty started small by launching a blog called Line//Shape//Space. Four years later, he’s grown that small pilot project into a multi-award-winning publication and is influencing the entire organization to think differently about content.

Leading by example, Dusty and his team are changing the culture of Autodesk, teaching how to tell stories that are so good their audience wants to engage with them.

Content Marketing Institute asked Dusty to highlight how the culture at Autodesk has changed and what lessons he has learned from his years inside the organization.

Learn the ropes by starting small

Line//Shape//Space was among Autodesk’s first concerted efforts to connect with very small businesses (VSB). Autodesk’s business traditionally came from larger companies, so focusing on the small business market was a substantial shift.

The research into VSBs uncovered common needs and pain points among customers regardless of industry. First, Dusty learned many VSB owners had worked for larger companies and were familiar with the types of tools Autodesk offers. Paired with that finding, the research also showed that business owners’ greatest challenges were less about learning Autodesk software, and more about the struggles of running a business — which became the focus of Line//Shape//Space in those early days.

Dusty and his team set off to build a site specifically for this audience. They studied other successful content hubs targeting similar audiences, including American Express Open Forum. He says that understanding what others are doing is incredibly helpful as you build your own hub.

Help internal teams realize that marketing is fundamentally changing

Dusty’s team models what’s possible using content marketing, and in doing so helps the larger organization recognize the importance of great content as a means of pulling audiences in (while Dusty’s team runs Line//Shape//Space, the organization has industry-based content teams outside of Dusty’s purview). And Line//Shape//Space continues to inspire dispersed content teams to try something new, including new approaches to blogs and content hubs.

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Source: Content Marketing Institute