89% of B2B marketers report that content marketing is their most effective way of bringing in new leads and sales. Which is why a strong B2B content strategy should be the backbone of any marketing campaign.
Not sure where to start? Read out tips below on setting up a successful content plan.
What Is B2B content strategy?
Chances are, by now you’ve heard about how important a strong content strategy is. However, unless you’ve spent some time focusing on marketing efforts in the past you may not know what B2B content is.
Basically, B2B content is offering valuable information through various mediums to other businesses to mark yourself as an authority in the industry. Not only does this lead to increased traffic and higher Google rankings, but it also increases the number leads your business will bring in.
Know Who You’re Creating Content For
There’s an old marketing adage that states “if you’re talking to no one everyone you’re talking to no one”. The saying still rings true today, which is why it’s so important to know exactly who your content will be geared to.
While target market research is very helpful, we suggest creating an ideal target avatar. This means crafting a fictional character that matches someone that would fall into your demographic.
Give your avatar a name and get detailed. What do they do for a living? How many children do they have? How far did they get in their education?
Then go even deeper. Think about what keeps your avatar up at night. What parts of their day can be made better? Who do they admire? This information should be at the center of all of your content.
What Problem Will You be Solving?
Out of the questions listed above, the most important is what problem will you be solving? Is it a problem that your avatar even knows they have? Do you need to let them know that it’s a problem? Most importantly, how will you educate them on how your product or service fixes the problem?
Another valuable asset in marketing is letting your audience know just how affected they are by this problem. For example, everyone knows that a lack of sleep leaves you with low energy throughout the day, but do they know that not sleeping also increases your risk of heart attack? This is educating your audience on the realities of the problem you’re helping to solve.
Highlighting What Makes You Unique
Unless you’ve landed on an entirely original product, you’re going to have some competitors. Even if your idea is entirely unique, it won’t be long until the copied ideas start popping up. So it’s important to learn how to highlight what sets you apart from similar products and services.
Even subtle differences can give you an advantage over the competition. For example, your product may be more eco-friendly, safer for children, or perhaps a portion of your proceeds goes to a cause your avatar is passionate about. Highlight these differences and incorporate them into your content.
Know Content Type
Not all B2B content lands the same. It’s important to know what type of content your audience is most responsive too. Often these media choices will depend on the industry, for example, fast pace industries may respond better to a short info graphic than an in-depth blog.
You may find that your audience responds to a blend of content, like a short blog paired with a video that gives more information on the subject. See where the engagement lies and follow that.
And Where to Publish It
Today there are countless social media platforms and media outlets where you can meet your audience, and trying to get your content on all of them will quickly dry up your marketing budget.
Instead, focus on 2-3 platforms that have been known to attract your type of audience. Don’t just limit yourself to social media either. White label blogging through other sites and media sources is also a great way to get your content in front of the right audience.
Set Clear Goals
And by clear goals, we mean realistic goals. Many businesses expect to start producing content and have the traffic rolling in within weeks. The truth is between audience research, content production, and engagement you’re looking at 4-6 months before you start seeing real results.
Which is why consistency is key in any content marketing campaign. Set a clear and realistic goal on where you would like to be in terms of traffic and engagement in the next 6 months, then an additional marker for a year from now.
Stay on Top of Management
Many businesses start off with a strong content campaign that tends to taper off as time goes on. We get it, your business takes enough time and energy without having to come up with fresh content on a regular basis.
This is where you have a couple of options. You can use a content platform that allows you to create your content in bulk and then slowly leak it out to the public. While this will ensure your content is consistent, it also requires you to invest a high number of hours up front.
Your other option is to hire a content agency that both creates and distributes the content on your behalf. This offers a higher ROI as getting the right kind of content engagement is what these businesses are all about.
Track and Regroup
While we would love to say that most businesses hit their content campaign out the park on the first try, this often isn’t the case. Fortunately, there are a number of analytics tools available to offer insight on which content is performing well and which isn’t.
Once a month take a look at your analytics and try to spot trends. Is your audience responding more to a specific type of content? Is one platform bringing in more leads than another?
Take this information and use it to restructure your content. Remember, your audience will change and it’s up to you to change with them.
Taking the Right Steps Today
The more you know about creating a B2B content strategy, the more successful your content campaign will be.
If you’re ready to start putting some action behind your content, we suggest starting with our article on 4 Actionable Content Marketing Tips.