How to build a B2B content strategy in 5 steps
Goals and Objectives: What needs to be accomplished?
Strategy: How will we get there?
Execution: How do we make sure the plan is executed properly?
Measurement: How will you know if you’re successful?
If I’m feeling all passionate about content strategy, then how can I take that information and use it in my own organization to help promote a B2B Content Strategy? Well…that’s exactly what I want to talk about today!
The best place to start when creating a Content Marketing Strategy is with a good old S.M.A.R.T goal! No not that kind of smart. The type that has a specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based objective behind it.
Remember: Don’t overcomplicate your goals with flowery language or lots of jargon. Keep them simple and easy to understand so everyone can get on the same page when you start working together!
The most common mistake we see in B2B Content Marketing is companies trying to do too much at once. This happens because they’re either trying to be all things to all people (don’t try to sell everything), egg shell buyers, or they just don’t know what to prioritize and let every product and service have its own content strategy.
It’s important to start with one goal at a time and be S.M.A.R.T about it! For example, if your #1 priority is increasing sales leads, where do you begin?
How to Build B2B Content Strategy to Increasing Sales Leads
Step 1: Start by creating awareness for your company’s products or services
This may sound like the easiest step, but when was the last time someone just happen to wander onto your website? How did they hear about you in the first place? Where are they coming from? What keywords are they searching for before visiting your site that led them there in the first place?
Once you’ve answered these questions (and created some fresh new content!) make sure all SEO efforts are focused on helping people discover your company and how you’re going to help them solve their problems. Publish content regularly, many times a day if possible. The idea is to make it easy for people looking for information to find your company, products, and services when they need them the most!
Step 2: Grow your subscriber base by creating great branded content
In order to really grow an audience that can become advocates for your brand, it’s important that you not only create a clear buyer persona but also define a target market, then create compelling offers that speak directly to those buyer personas.
Don’t just have a ‘generic’ subscribe form on every page of your website with no call-to-action or incentive behind it! Use targeted offers to get people to sign up. Maybe give them a free trial of your product or service, offer an eBook for download, or even just send them helpful industry-related information every week!
You want to create so much value around your company that it becomes the ‘go-to’ place in your industry and something people look forward to getting in their inboxes each day.
Step 3: The sales process begins with relationships…so start building them
Now we’re getting somewhere! You’ve created amazing content, you’ve grown your email list and social media following (among possibly other goals) but now what? How does all that content lead to more sales? Well like I mentioned earlier, nobody is going to be interested in what you’re selling unless they know about it first. A strong content strategy will help your sales team find more qualified leads through the use of keyword targeting, organic search engine visibility and lead nurturing email programs, etc…
But before any of that can happen you need to build relationships with people. It’s important to recognize that every single person who visits your website is a ‘potential customer! Sure some may not ever buy anything but it doesn’t mean they don’t have value for you as an organization. People will only share your content if they believe in your company, so create advocate marketing campaigns, offer special discounts, or just engage with them on social media.
Step 4: Make it easy for your customers to buy from you
This one speaks for itself, but by now you’ve created a strong content strategy and have built relationships with your audience so it’s time to put the two together! Make sure all of the most important information about your product or service is easily accessible on each landing page. Don’t have a complicated online cart that makes people go through hoops just to pay for what they want. Ensure both your website and email communication feels personal and friendly and try and make yourself available 24/7 (without being creepy) whether it be through social media, chat boxes, or mobile responsive websites.
At this point, we can almost guarantee that some kind of revenue has been yielded by your content strategy, BUT if you take this one step further, you could greatly increase conversions and ultimately make even more money!
Step 5: Revise & Repeat
This may seem like the most obvious step but it’s also probably the most important. Nobody ever got to the top of their industry by relying on ‘just’ 1 great idea (or any other number for that matter). If something has worked for you in terms of bringing in revenue once don’t be afraid to try it again! Just because something didn’t work last time doesn’t mean it won’t work now or next time so always be testing new ideas to see what resonates with your audience. At Tandem we’re fortunate enough to have what we call our ‘ideation’ room where every day someone is coming up with new ideas to test. Some make it, some don’t but what’s most important is the fact that every single one of us here at Tandem is always learning and evolving as a team!
While you can have a solid content strategy without following these 5 steps, it will be much harder for you to truly succeed if you’re just winging it each day. Whether you’re producing videos, hosting webinars, or blogging on your company website there are certain elements that need to be in place for you to stay relevant within your industry.
What are some ways do you go about creating a content strategy? Have any tips or tricks to get the most out of your content? Let us know in the comments below!