For many people, when they think of content marketing, B2C (business-to-consumer) examples are what come to mind first: retail company social-media accounts, TV ads geared to consumers, email campaigns around seasonal savings, browser ads, and press around product launches. But while B2C and B2B (business-to-business) content marketing strategies might have a lot in common, B2B marketers ultimately need to take a unique approach and have specific considerations to keep in mind.
So what makes B2B unique? How do you tailor your B2B strategy to produce marketing content that your audience will respond to? Here are 3 steps to building a successful content marketing strategy for your B2B organization.
1. Make It Useful
This seems obvious at face value, but look deeper. B2C marketing can find success and traction through creative concepts alone, tapping into audiences’ desires and interests on an individual level. But a company is not going to approve a major IT services purchase based on a cute TV ad. According to WordStream, B2B content marketing should first and foremost show actionable value to the viewer or their organization.
So consider how you can prove your value to potential customers. You’ll want a convincing argument for the value of your products or services, but you’ll also need proof of that value. Share case studies of successful customers and data-driven results in the form of data visualizations, motion graphics, interactive infographics, and other content that shares measurable results. All this will help B2B audiences generate buy-in within their organization.
2. Know Your Audience
Is your purchaser the CEO, CMO, or CFO? Perhaps they’re at the managerial or junior level, and need resources that will help them communicate value to their department head.
You’ll speak to each of these audiences differently. So if you don’t yet know who you’re trying to reach, before you write another word of B2B marketing content, take time to analyze your audience and come up with a persona or personas. Even better, invest in a detailed customer segmentation engagement. This way, you’ll have a clear target audience in mind every time you create a new piece of content.
3. Consider the Right Channels
Now that you know your target audience, where can you reach them during their workday? Their email inbox, LinkedIn, and direct mail are just some of the options that might reach your purchasers effectively. Investigate how you’re currently interacting with key accounts and determine what’s working best. Where applicable, try A/B testing to get a quantitative picture of success.
Launching Your B2B Content Marketing Strategy
Once you’ve invested time into building the foundation of your B2B marketing strategy, you can move back into producing content with a much more defined approach. Plan to reassess your strategy throughout the year, taking note of your most and least successful campaigns. Over time this data will help hone an approach that keeps your audience engaged and ready to purchase.
For more on B2B content marketing, check out these resources: