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Regardless of whether you’re a B2C or B2B company, you still need to have a content strategy sorted. Quality content is vital to driving organic search traffic, engaging with customers, and reinforcing trust in your brand.
If you’re stumped on how to create a banging B2B content strategy, fear not! We’ve got the lowdown on how to create a B2B content strategy that just works. Read on to find out more.
Start with research
Research is fundamental to shaping your B2B content strategy. There are a few areas in particular that you need to look into when you are gathering information and data.
Carrying out a website content audit will help you to analyse how your existing content is performing. Knowing what is working well and what is letting your site down means you can design a content strategy based on previous successes. It will also help you to define metrics and objectives for the future.
Researching your competitors’ content will give you an idea of what your B2B needs to do to be in with a fight chance. SEMRush and other such tools will provide you with useful data on search volume and keyword competition, which you can feed back into your own content strategy. You can even hijack competitor keywords that are low in competition but still relevant to your niche and make this integral to your content strategy.
Create strong buyer personas
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Next, you need to research your customers: who is your target audience? After all you’re tailoring your content to them, so any B2B content strategy you create needs to be optimised with them in mind.
Creating strong buyer personas (a fictional, generalised representation of your target customers) will help you to better understand their behaviours and preferences. Establishing demographic and psychographic information is critical to creating engaging, valuable content.
Hubspot offers detailed — and free! — persona templates, if you need a hand creating yours.
Remember that creating B2B buyer personas is different to B2C personas for a number of reasons. When you’re making B2B buyer personas to improve your content strategy, remember these key differences:
- B2B customers will tend to make collective decisions as a business — multiple people will tally up the pros and cons of buying your product, software or service
- Impulse buys don’t tend to be a thing in B2B — B2B purchases are much more considered than B2C buying on a whim
- The customer isn’t always the end user — this could be someone buying the product for the wider business or for a specific job/team
- You need to show why your product is valuable and beneficial to them — earn their trust and credibility with educational content, social proof and stats
Remembering these core components when creating your B2B buyer personas will help you to keep the customer at the centre of your content strategy, and will make tailoring your content to their needs much easier.
Promote your content and make the most of social media
You may think that social media is only for B2C marketing but it’s really not. Great news!
Social media is a powerful tool for B2B content strategies too — content on your site is great, but it needs to be in conjunction with other content tactics. Otherwise, how are you going to drive traffic to your website?
93% of B2B organisations use social media content to promote their product or service.
Unlike B2C brands however, B2Bs tend to catch their customers on LinkedIn. That’s because the platform is a great space to share expert knowledge, build relationships and promote your brand. In fact, a whopping 94% of B2B marketers using the platform to shout about their business and make connections with prospects, and say that the business platform is the most effective to work on. Other strong social platforms to distribute your B2B content on are Twitter and Facebook.
Find out where your demographic spend their time and use a combination of organic and paid content to target them effectively. B2Bs can learn a lot from B2C brands when it comes to growing your online business through Facebook ads, so don’t think that you should just stick to ‘business-related’ platforms like LinkedIn.
Remember to listen to the conversations in your niche and monitor what people are saying before you engage.
Manage content production
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Managing your content production efficiently is a huge part of creating a successful B2B content strategy.
An editorial calendar will help you to organise the content you are planning to publish in the future. This can be as far-reaching as a year into the future, taking into account the potential for seasonal content marketing.
Use your editorial calendar to plan out all of your content marketing — from your blogging, to your social media ads and posts, to email campaigns and wider marketing efforts.
There are various social media marketing tools that will help you to create an editorial calendar (as well as analyse the performance of your posts for improvement). Alternatively, you can download a free content calendar like this one and map out your content for the year ahead.
Keep evolving and refining your strategy
Lastly, one of the most important things you need to do for a fully working and successful content strategy is to keep moving forward.
The same content that worked for your B2B last year is not necessarily going to work for you this year. Times change, new trends come along, and industries evolve — particularly in the digital market.
Your content strategy cannot remain stagnant. If your brand can’t keep up with trends, it will quickly become irrelevant and boring. Customers won’t be interested in your content or your product anymore. Instead, they’ll flock to a competitor that’s churning out new, interesting content that applies.
Spend time researching trends on the horizon, and acknowledge them in your content.
You should also revise your strategy depending on how content is responded to by clients and prospects; if you’re seeing high levels of engagement and traffic to your site, keep doing what you’re doing! If numbers are dipping, it’s time to review your performance and implement some changes.
Creating a B2B content strategy doesn’t have to be complicated. Follow these guidelines and your strategy will rival that of your competitors.
Thanks to Patrick Foster for this great guest post – please make sure you check out his website before you leave!