Why do business-to-business companies need a B2B Content Marketing Strategy? Content Marketing has been the latest internet marketing buzzword for a while now. However, just like most elements within the evolution of internet marketing, the B2B world tends to lag behind. When I first started working with B2B’s in the late 90’s they were unsure websites were necessary. “Why do we need a website Paul?” They would ask. “We go to all the trade shows, we have a sales force who calls on all the right people, we have great brochures, etc.” At the turn of the century they questioned SEO, then PPC, and then in last few years, Social and Video.
Content Marketing is the convergence of all the great elements of Internet Marketing and when wielded correctly, can have a huge impact in your B2B business. But act quickly, while your competitors are still in the stone age. Here are the 4 rules for starting and maintaining an effective content marketing strategy for your business.
- Key Phrase Research is key. You must understand the words and phrases your target audience use when searching for your products/services. Ideal phrases would center around problems your potential customer is trying to solve.
- Think About Concentric Circles. Your buyers are real people and deal with issues beyond what your company does. When developing a content calendar focus on content that goes beyond your sweet spot. For example, if you provide accounting software, other topics you might write about could be about, cutting expenses, going green, or maintaining customer relationships, etc.
- Remember the Funnel. There are 3 key stages to the universal marketing funnel (Awareness, Evaluation, Decision). Your content calendar should include articles for each stage:
- Awareness – Information that is useful and beneficial before the buyer is in market. This will help them become aware that you exist.
- Evaluation – Information that will help them evaluate all the ways to solve their business need.
- Decision – Content that helps buyers understand why they should do business with your company and nobody else.
- Focus on Frequency – For most B2B’s you should post a blog article at least once per week. Posting erratically or opportunistically won’t work. Pick a day and a time and get those blogs out. Pick your topics a quarter at a time. This will help you stay consistent and on point. It will also make it easier to get the content written on time.
B2B Content Marketing is Worth the Effort
One of our clients is a manufacturer of industrial ultrasonic cleaners. We post a blog for them every week. We make sure that it is well optimized for search and is promoted properly in social media. Over the last 12 months we have seen their leads increase by over 100%.
It’s time to embrace innovation and take the next step in the evolution of Internet marketing. When wielded correctly, B2B content marketing can have a huge impact. Let you competition remain in the stone age while write your way to leads and sales leveraging the 4 rules for maintaining a successful content marketing strategy.