Every B2B content strategy should start off strong with a good foundation. This foundation needs to consider the audience being targeted, the brand vision, the campaign’s goals, along with the information the audience needs to know.
Initially, it is essential to clearly define an audience so that marketing can be targeted accurately to the right market segment. One method to target a market is by establishing a buyer persona. The other method is to survey an audience through market research. Buyer personas allow a business to take a holistic view of who they wish to target by understanding key aspects including psychographics, demographics, and other relevant characteristics. Surveying an audience permits first-hand information to be obtained, and this information can be combined with a buyer persona to add further depth to market research.
Use research to build a strong foundation for a B2B marketing content strategy. Good B2B market research needs to be more in-depth because B2B customers may need more convincing to help them reach a buying decision along their customer journey and throughout their long purchase cycle. With enough detail involved in research to match target customers more effectively, businesses can make the most attractive offer and the most engaging content for their audiences.
With customer centricity being an important consideration, a B2B content strategy should address the needs of ideal customers that are found through research. The premise is to use a content strategy as part of a brand-led marketing methodology to both attract the attention of customers as well as serve their needs. Additionally, the content produced will showcase your business’s expertise within its industry, putting it at the forefront of potential customers’ minds. Further considerations include keyword research, tone of voice, achievable goals and KPIs, budget, and brand vision.
Which target keywords will your content rank for? Ensure content created is targeting keywords that answer specific questions an audience is searching for. Typically, the tone of voice used in B2B content tends to err on the side of being informative and knowledgeable, for good reason. It sets businesses up as perceived experts and thought leaders. Customers are looking for content that leads and helps them to decide upon the ideal solution to their problems. Content should be intentional and should result in supporting a business in achieving attainable goals and reaching business KPIs. While producing content can be low cost, a budget may also need to be reserved so that it can be allocated for content distribution if paid strategies are being used. Additionally, content must remain true to a business’s overall brand vision as well as support your marketing funnel and nudge prospective customers further along the customer journey.
With all this in mind, it can be difficult to balance a content strategy that meets all these requirements. A solution to this is creating two types of content: core pillar content and supporting satellite content, each of which targets these requirements individually. Produce key pieces of core, pillar content to target chosen keywords, supports the business’s marketing funnel, and encourage customers along the customer journey. Create satellite pieces of content to support the core pillar content. These satellite pieces can be knowledgeable, can keep to a business’s goals and KPIs, and can be true to the business’s brand vision.
A content strategy should involve two further stages beyond the planning stage: creating the content, as well as content distribution and promotion.
When creating content, cater it to the format that an audience prefers to consume, though there are some general guidelines to follow. Although it is possible to find out an audience’s preferred consumption methods through customer research, use blog posts and videos to better showcase expertise, as both these formats work particularly well for B2B marketing. Case studies and infographics are also powerful ways to impart information to potential customers and answer the specific questions that they are searching for.
Keyword research will help a business to rank with organic content distribution on search engines. However, a business will still need to implement a content distribution strategy that includes social media, relevant forums for its industry, email newsletters, and traditional PR methods. Additionally, consider repurposing long-form content into short-form versions and redistributing these short-form content pieces on platforms where short-form content thrives.
With a rugged B2B marketing content strategy in place, along with a strong foundation in customer research, a business can position itself as an expert in its field while guiding potential customers in their upcoming decision to purchase. This expertise can help sway the perceived value of the business in the minds of key decision-makers during the purchase process, especially when a business places customer centricity at its core.
Staying focused on customers’ needs is core to our business model at SQN. We help our customers to concentrate their efforts through an effective content strategy and the power of partnerships through sponsorship. With this in mind, we believe we can help your business create an effective content strategy for your B2B marketing efforts. Get in touch with us today to give your business’s B2B marketing content strategy a boost.