Last year, 28% of marketers reduced their digital advertising budgets to create more niche content. Smart businesses use a B2B content marketing strategy to get high quality leads. Want to create a perfect strategy? Follow the seven steps below.
1. Set Your Lead Generation Goal
You can get leads through a B2B content marketing strategy. A specific number will help you track success. Also, tracking can reveal opportunities. You can improve your content over time. Start by reviewing your current lead generation tactics. This creates a benchmark for the new initiative.
In general, content marketing can generate triple the amount of leads compared to traditional marketing. If you choose an organic-only promotion plan, you may not see results for months or years. Do you want a fast bump in leads? You need to integrate paid advertising as part of your plan. Setting expectations can help you plan.
2. Create Your Offer
Every B2B content marketing strategy needs an offer. Examples include downloads, demonstrations or webinars. Several considerations will guide the process.
First, find valuable organic keywords that your target audience uses. This keyword research will influence your content. It helps you put together the offer. Second, optimize it for search. As you publish, all of the elements should perform well. This includes text, graphics, design, development and more. Third, prioritize your niche. Don’t mimic generic content. Don't copy another site. Create something unique to your business.
Keep these considerations in mind as you build your offer. Your offer will not only please prospective customers but also build the trust necessary for a conversion.
3. Generate Related Content
Now, you have an offer that encourages leads to submit their information. You need to create a plan to draw prospective customers. You should promote the same offer as a call-to-action on many pieces of content. This creates many paths for conversion.
Ideas for content vary. Most include the following types:
- Blog or Vlog Posts;
- Case Studies;
- Company or Industry News;
- Customer Quotes or Reviews;
- Data Visuals;
- Demos and Webinars;
- “How To” Articles;
- Interviews with Thought Leaders;
- Polls and Surveys;
- Question and Answer (Q&A) Videos;
- Success Stories;
- White Papers;
Create each piece of content. Add the offer at the bottom.
4. Connect the Conversion Funnel
First you developed an offer. Then, you created content to engage your audience. Now, you need to connect the conversion funnel to your CRM. This requires more than checking the form inputs.
Your sales team must know about the offer and related content. This helps them stay connected to their contacts. Also, they can join in the feedback loop with marketing.
As they talk to prospective customers, they can identify common questions. Then, you can generate more relevant content to address those pain points.
Organizations that capitalize on their funnel outperform their competitors. A recent study by Microsoft on CRMs revealed several insights, including:
- 50% overall increase in productivity;
- 40% reduction in customer service labor cost;
- 20% overall decrease in labor cost;
- 10% reduction in consultation time;
- 5% increase in sales productivity;
- 2% increase in revenue.
Connect your conversion funnel to the sales team. You’ll get better feedback. Then, your lead generation can improve over time.
5. Saturate Your Website with the Offer
Although you will promote your offer through a content marketing campaign, make it easy to find on your website. Link to it from relevant webpages. As a user lands on your website, you don’t know where they are at in the decision making process.
Smart businesses that saturate their website with a valuable offer. 48% of marketers support the customer’s decision making process with specialized content. Often that occurs on the business’s website.
6. Promote the Content
Let people know about your new content by promoting it on many mediums. Several channels work well for a B2B content marketing strategy. This includes social media, word-of-mouth, and paid advertising .
First, organizations can use social media to reach prospective buyers. According to Pew Research Center, 77% of workers use these platforms while at work. Also, customers trust information when it is shared by someone they know:
- 24% use social media to make professional connections;
- 20% search for information to solve professional pain points;
- 17% to build personal relationships with coworkers on social media.
Second, word of mouth promotes content in the B2B market. When a worker benefits from your content, they will likely share it with a coworker or professional connection. Your content gains authority and exposure.
Third, paid advertising fills the gap while you wait for organic traffic. Google’s algorithm will take months, and sometimes years, to rank content. You need to create some of your own traffic quickly by paying for placement. The Google ad network allows you to target prospective customers based on demographic information, geography and interests. Retargeting software helps you cookie website visitors and target them with your offer at a later date. Also, industry publications put your content in front of a niche audience. Each of these paid channels creates fast exposure.
7. Launch and Track
After you launch your B2B content marketing strategy, data helps you improve the plan. Track your conversion funnel. Compare it to your lead goals. If you fall short, look for areas to improve. If you succeed, find opportunities to speed up growth.
Often, companies use A/B testing to check key elements of the campaign, including:
- Channel Strategy;
- Ad Units Used;
- Form Placement;
- Landing Page Layout.
Tell Us Your Thoughts
We always appreciate feedback from our readers. How are you implementing your B2B content marketing strategy? Tell us about your plans in the comments.