You’ve no doubt heard the term ‘content marketing strategy’ before, but do you know what it means?
Often, people throw such buzzwords around without an explanation but that stops now. We’re talking about how to create a B2B content marketing strategy that ensures your business is spending its resource in the most effective way possible.
In a nutshell, a content marketing strategy is:
“A strategic marketing and business process focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience, and ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.” Source: Medium
Content marketing is delivered online using social media, e-newsletters, blog articles, video content, eBooks and other interactive or downloadable content. Your content marketing strategy is what holds the key to winning the trust of your audience and, ultimately, what converts a browsing visitor into a regular buyer of your products or services.
Successful content marketing creates brand advocates who are keen to support and invest in your business or organisation, long term.
Here, we provide some key tips to create the most appropriate content marketing strategy for your organisation. We discuss what it should involve, and how to create the content your business needs to help its growth.
Set a goal (and stick to it)
What does your organisation or business want to achieve? That’s what your content marketing should be aligned to; your key objectives and aims.
There’s no point in having amazingly creative content if it doesn’t attract your target audience. There’s often a big focus on writing in a specific style or tone but the winning content is the content that turns those browsers into buyers.
It’s really that simple.
It’s about giving your audience valuable information at the right time in the customer journey for them be influenced by your content and, ultimately, make a purchase.
Who is your target audience?
Before writing a single sentence, you need to know who your target audience is and why.
Content must be tailored to this specific audience or audience groups, and you should know your audience/s inside out, upside down! Completing a customer persona exercise will help you do this.
Once you’re familiar with your audience’s key characteristics and norms, you should research their needs. You need to ask yourself: ‘What might they want from you?’ and ‘What questions do they likely have?’
Your content needs to hold the answers.
What are your competitors doing?
Before you write any content, or decide how this content should flow online, have you checked out who your competitors are and what they’re doing?
Whether you’re operating within a highly crowded market or niche sector, you should always do your research on the competition and find out who your key competitors are.
Through competitor analysis, you can see what kind of content is working for your audience – and the kind that falls flat on its face. You can also gain a sense of perspective and inspiration in developing relevant content, however, that’s where competitor influence should stop.
You don’t want to mimic your competition, it’s vital to create your own unique selling points (USPs) to differentiate your offering.
Every strategy needs brilliant tactics
Now that you’ve got the basics of your content marketing strategy in place, you need to create a tactical plan.
Develop and organise the topics your content will cover and the key focus within each piece of content, then decide how and when you’re going to deliver it. Assign ownership to each deliverable and ensure this is an ongoing responsibility so that new content is consistently developed in a timely way.
You need to seriously consider the content you’re going to create and how this appeals, and is relevant to, your target audience. It’s about securing that ‘always switched on’ customer rather than having them switch off while browsing your website, social media, newsletter, or any other content for that matter.
Values and voice
It is paramount that you ensure every single piece of content – whether that’s a social media post, website article, press release or video – represents your organisation’s core values and voice.
Keep reviewing them both and ensure you stick to your values and maintain a consistent tone of voice – it’s this that makes you different from the rest.
A good way to ensure your values are highlighted is to regularly blog about them. Remember, every time you create a new blog article, you’re adding another indexed page to your website which presents another opportunity for Google to rank your website within relevant search engine results.
Measure your efforts
It’s important to regularly take stock of your content and assess its success based on how well received it is by your audience. This enables you to see what kind of content works best so you focus your time and energy on what’s working rather than plugging away at what’s not.
You should always be learning about your target audience, educating yourself on how they’re interacting with your content. You can never do enough research. Find out how they’re accessing your website – is it via social media, Google Ads or video content from your website appearing in online searches?
Track the amount of time people are spending on your website, how long it takes to convert a sale (on average), and also to lose one. It’s often hard to track exact ROI when it comes to B2B sales, but arming yourself with as much information as possible will enable you to improve your content marketing strategy and identify the key pieces of content that really appeal to your audience. This will inform you where to invest your future efforts.
Create a winning B2B content marketing strategy
Need help to create or improve your content marketing? Drop us a line at email@example.com or pick up the phone to 0191 691 1293 – we’re happy to help.