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How to create a successful B2B content marketing strategy in 6 simple steps

How to create a successful B2B content marketing strategy in 6 simple steps

High-quality content starts with a successful content marketing strategy. But how do you create a successful B2B content marketing strategy? Read our blog to find out more.

Quality content starts with a successful content marketing strategy. However, only 40% of B2B marketers have a documented content marketing strategy. So, why do so many B2B marketers not have a content strategy if it's so important?

The simple answer is that creating an effective B2B content strategy can be challenging and time-consuming. That’s why we’ve put together this simple 6-step guide to creating an effective B2B content marketing strategy. We’ll also cover what B2B content marketing is, how it’s different from B2C, and how B2B businesses can benefit from a content strategy. 

What is B2B content marketing?

B2B content marketing involves creating, sharing, and promoting content that appeals to your target business audience. This content increases brand awareness, drives traffic to your website, and increases leads and sales. B2B content marketing includes blogs, podcasts, and email newsletters. 

How is B2B content marketing different from B2C?

Target audience 

Business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing involves targeting individual consumers that fit your target audience. However, business-to-business (B2B) marketing involves targeting one or more people within a business before the final decision-makers are involved. 

Length of the sales cycle

Typically, the B2B sales cycle and marketing funnel are longer and more complicated than for B2C. Individual consumers tend to buy products or services more quickly than businesses. An individual may read a blog about a new product and purchase it within minutes. 

With B2B marketing, multiple stakeholders may need to be persuaded of the value of a product or service. This process takes time and can be very drawn out - 74.6% of new B2B sales take over four months to complete. 

Audience motivation

B2B audiences tend to be driven by logic and rationality when purchasing. The business may have an approved buying process that they have to follow that involves multiple stakeholders. However, B2C audiences are often motivated by their needs and wants, especially for smaller purchases.

Why should B2B companies use content marketing?

71% of B2B marketers said content marketing became more important to their organisation in the last year. 

One of the main reasons content marketing is so important for B2B businesses is the high ROI. Content marketing is a highly cost-effective way to improve your business’s online visibility and search engine rankings. Producing high-quality evergreen content can yield long-term results that continue to drive leads for your business for years to come. 

We’ve got more information on the importance of B2B content marketing in our blog ‘Why is content marketing important for B2B?’.

Why do you need a B2B content marketing strategy?

According to the Content Marketing Institute, 64% of the most successful B2B marketers have a documented content marketing strategy, so you should too. 

An effective content marketing strategy is essential for creating quality content and driving traffic and leads to your site. A strategy acts as a roadmap to help your content achieve specific and measurable goals that align with your wider business objectives. This ensures that all the great content you create is relevant to your target audience and helps to move them along the marketing funnel. 

Check out our blog ‘What is a content marketing strategy and why should you implement one?’ for more information. 

How to create an effective B2B content marketing strategy 

Although B2B content marketing strategies will vary depending on your offering and target audience, some key steps are still essential to every successful content strategy. 

1. Decide on your marketing goals 

The first step in every effective content marketing strategy should be to establish your goals. What do you want to achieve with your content marketing? 

Common B2B content marketing goals include:

  • Increasing traffic to your website 
  • Lead generation
  • Brand awareness 
  • Thought leadership 
  • Engagement 
  • Increased sales 
  • Higher conversion rates

Whatever your goals are, you should set them using the S.M.A.R.T. goal-setting technique. This ensures that your goals can be monitored and tracked. Otherwise, you have no way of measuring if your goals have been achieved. 

Specific: Your goals should be specific and focus on one defined metric. You should also include specific tasks that will help you achieve your goal. 

For example, a specific goal might be increasing website traffic by publishing 3 blog posts monthly. 

Measurable: Your goals should also be measurable and include specific numbers.

For example, a measurable goal might be to increase lead generation by 15%. 

Attainable: You should be confident that you can reach your goals. There’s no point in creating unachievable goals - before setting them, you should check that you have the capacity and time to achieve them. 

For example, increasing website traffic by publishing an extra blog post monthly is attainable for many in-house B2B marketing departments. However, setting a goal to write 10 more pieces of content might be unattainable.

Relevant: Your goals should be relevant to your broader business goals. 

For example, if your business wants to focus on brand awareness, you might set a goal to increase organic traffic by writing 5 new blog posts and 10 social media posts a month. 

Time-bound: Your goals should always have a realistic timeframe and deadline. 

For example, a time-bound goal might be to increase lead generation by 15% within 3 months (or by a specific date).

2. Identify your ideal audience and their needs

This step involves identifying your target audience and creating one or multiple buyer personas. 

If you’re new to content marketing or have limited resources, you might choose to focus on just one buyer persona. However, splitting your target audience into subgroups and creating a unique persona for each subgroup can also be helpful.

Make sure you focus on both the business and the individual within the business that you’re trying to target. 

Information you might include in your buyer persona:

  • Their role in the buying process
  • Job title 
  • Industry 
  • Company size and location 
  • Their fears and worries 
  • Their goals and motivations 
  • Challenges they experience in their role

3. Map the buyer’s journey 

Most B2B buyers undertake a lot of online research before making an enquiry or a purchase. So, it’s essential to know what questions your ideal customer has or what kind of research they’re undertaking, so you can create valuable and relevant content for them.

The buyer’s journey has three distinct stages: awareness, consideration and decision.

Awareness (top of the funnel)

In the awareness stage, the prospect starts to be aware that they have an issue or a problem that needs solving. They’re likely to use research to learn more about their problem and what’s causing it. 

Content designed for prospects at the awareness stage should focus on pain points rather than your product, brand, or company. You should be trying to educate them and answer their questions. For example, a manager might ask, ‘why is my team working ineffectively?’.

Types of content at the awareness stage might include:

  • Blogs
  • White papers
  • Guides
  • Ebooks 
  • Checklists 
  • Tip sheets
  • infographics

Consideration (middle of the funnel)

By this stage, the prospect knows what their problem is and what is causing it. Now they’re looking for a solution. They’ll likely research many possible solutions and evaluate the pros and cons of each approach. 

This stage’s content should be focused on the solution rather than the problem. You should communicate how your specific solution solves their problem. For example, a team manager might Google ‘how to make my team more productive’ or ‘what’s the best team management software’. 

Consideration stage content might include:

  • Longer blog posts
  • Comparisons 
  • Webinars 
  • Quizzes, calculators or tools 
  • Product feature videos 
  • Customer testimonials 
  • Case studies 

Decision (bottom of the funnel)

In the decision stage, the potential customer has decided on the best way to solve the problems and just needs the final push to decide. This might involve gathering evidence to present to decision-makers who make the final purchase decision. For example, after deciding on the best team management software, a potential customer might look for more information about its features or how it works. 

Content at this stage should focus on providing as much detailed information about the product or service and overcoming any worries or objections the prospect might have. 

Decision stage content might include:

  • Product feature videos 
  • Customer testimonials 
  • Case studies 
  • Information about free trials, coupons, or consultations
  • Data or statistics 

4. Research new content ideas 

The next step is to research new content ideas. First, develop 5-10 topics your buyer persona might be interested in.

You can then use a keyword search tool, like Semrush, to help you undertake more specific keyword research. This will help you find relevant keywords that link to your selected topics. You just need to type in a seed keyword, and the tool will find loads of linked keywords that you can target in your content. 

For more in-depth, have a look at our blog ‘How to do keyword research’.

5. Create a content calendar 

Once you have your content titles, you can put them in a content calendar. This should include the content topic, titles, keywords, type, writer, and publishing date. Typically a content calendar includes 3 or 6 months' worth of content.

Having a content calendar makes it easy for the entire team to see the content plan, and it’s clear whose responsibility each piece of content is. 

6. Measure and monitor your results 

According to the Content Marketing Institute, 95% of successful marketers use metrics to measure content performance. So, it’s essential that you routinely monitor the results of your B2B content strategy and check if you’ve met your goals. 

For example, if your goal was to increase organic traffic to your website, you might be tracking metrics such as the number of organic visits per month, the number of leads from organic traffic per month, and keyword rankings. 

When to get help 

If you don’t have the time or resources to dedicate to creating an effective content strategy or still don’t know where to start, it might be time to get some outside help.

At Logica Digital, we have over 15 years of experience creating successful content strategies for B2B businesses. Contact the team today to learn more about what we do and how we can help you see real results with your content strategy!

Blog written by

Kezia Humphries
Content Executive

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