Do you feel like your B2B content marketing strategy has become stale and your methods don’t seem to be getting the results they used to?
In the fast-paced world of digital marketing, it’s vital to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and tactics if you want to stay relevant to your audience and avoid falling behind your competitors. If you haven’t changed up your content strategy in the last 12 months, it’s time to take stock, figure out what’s working, and consider what new tactics you can employ to make the most out of your content.
- Brands can leverage AI to produce and promote content at optimal levels.
- Personalized content improves your conversion rates and builds one-to-one brand-customer relationships.
- Your employees can tell your brand story more convincingly than anyone else.
- Live video demonstrates your authenticity and transparency to customers.
- Data enables companies to continually improve and refine their strategies based on real insights.
- Content marketing agencies help save costs and execute more scalable strategies.
AI-Powered Content Production and Distribution
The amount of data that websites, apps, and businesses are collecting about online behavior and customers is growing at an exponential rate. In fact, worldwide data consumption is expected to reach 174 zettabytes (that’s 21 zeros!) by 2024 — nearly double it’s 2021 rate.
Image Source: Finances Online
While the sheer volume of this data means that it can be difficult for humans to process effectively and gain insights from, spotting patterns and trends in data is something that machines are very good at.
Artificial intelligence software can now assist in all stages of content marketing — from spotting upcoming topic trends in the research phase and optimizing headlines for maximum impact and click-through rate, to automatically determining the best social networks and best times to promote content.
Intelligent software can not only speed up the content production process and make it more efficient, but it can help you to make content that better serves the needs of your audience too.
AI and increased data collection have also made it possible to deliver a highly personalized experience to each individual member of your audience.
When you have data about demographics, browsing behavior, and previous engagement with your brand, you can use this information to deliver “hyper personalized” content experiences to each user, custom-designed to be as useful and engaging as possible.
Salesforce reports that 84% of customers say being treated like a person, not a number (AKA receiving personalized attention) is very important to winning their business. This applies as much for B2C content marketing as it does in the B2B context.
Further, customers expect personalized conveniences like connected processes (think omnichannel communication), sellers who understand how they want/need to use products and services, and instant, on-demand engagement).
Image Source: Salesforce UK
As anyone on the sales team knows, it’s making this human connection with someone that can make a sale. The same is true in content marketing. When your content is targeted in its delivery, prioritizes topics that your customers care about, and has responsive design for seamless consumption, you can expect your leads to stick around.
By personalizing your B2B content marketing strategy ,you not only streamline your sales funnel and improve your conversion rate, but also helps build relationships with the individuals making purchase decisions for their companies.
Employee Generated Content
Influencer marketing can certainly be effective, but it can also be challenging to carry out in a B2B setting.
The answer is to use your own employees as influencers — the people who work for you are the best advocates for your business. It’s for this reason that over 70% of marketers use their employees as influencers.
Employees who advocate for their companies (such as by sharing brand content!) also help drive significant growth — employee-shared posts reach a staggering 571% wider audiences, and the leads they generate are 7X more likely to convert to sales.
Image Source: Peer to Peer Marketing
Of course, for employee influencers to be engaging, genuine, and persuasive, it’s vital that they really believe in your brand and are passionate about the business succeeding.
Your internal influencers can tell the story of your brand in a way that nobody else can. But it’s essential that you nurture a positive culture of growth and support at work, and do whatever you can to make every individual employee feel as if they are an integral part of the company and the brand.
Each individual can give a unique viewpoint, and consumers tend to trust content with a human face more than generic bra. Each employee can also bring his or her unique ideas to your content plan to keep things fresh and ensure you’re never stuck for content ideas.
Your employees can be your most effective salespeople so make sure you invest in employee engagement as much as you do in your content marketing strategy.
HubSpot’s most recent State of Video report highlights exactly why it’s more important than ever to make video part of your digital content strategy. Their survey found that 90% of marketers say video has increased leads for their company — up from 86% in 2022 and the highest rate ever reported since the survey has been conducted.
Image Source: HubSpot
Other must-know stats from the survey drive this point home even further:
- 91% of businesses use video as a marketing tool, and 96% see it as a critical part of their strategy
- 92% of marketers say video gives them a positive ROI (another all-time high)
- 87% of marketers say video has a direct positive impact on sales
- 96% say it helps increase user understanding of their products and services
- 96% of consumers say they watch videos to learn about products and services
- 79% say video has directly convinced them to make a purchase
The takeaway — if you aren’t already using marketing in your content marketing strategy, the time to start is right now.
And while all types of video will continue to grow in popularity in 2023, live video, in particular, is one strategy that is certainly worth considering integrating into your content strategy.
Live video is becoming an increasingly important part of several social networks. 80% of consumers would rather watch a live video than read a blog post. And Facebook has said that users spend 3 times longer watching live videos than standard videos.
As live video is unedited, it’s a great way to demonstrate authenticity and transparency, and build trust in your brand. Live video can also be interactive and is effective at engaging your audience.
As well as being a popular content format, live content converts extremely well. One survey found that 67% of people watching a livestream would go on to make a purchase.
Image Source: Livestream
Data-Driven Content Strategy
Content marketing is no longer an optional part of your marketing strategy, but a must-have in today’s digital age. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find a business or brand that didn’t engage in some form of content marketing.
Today, successful B2B content marketers have increasingly sophisticated, data-driven content strategies with measurable goals and insights-based optimization that delivers higher ROI.
Consider this — while 94% of businesses use content marketing in some capacity, only 9% say their strategy is very successful. Many don’t even know if their strategy is successful or not. For those companies, I’d strongly venture to guess a missing piece to their puzzle is lack of data insights. Further, an overwhelming majority of marketers — 87% — say data is their most underutilized asset.
Those businesses that are serious about content marketing will use insights from available data to construct their B2B content marketing strategy and plan, then analyze the results to ensure success. They’ll look for ways to refine and continually improve their strategy to find, engage, and convert the right audiences.
Along with this increasing sophistication in content marketing will come more reliance on tools and technology to deal with the data and manage strategy. The number of martech solutions is continuing to grow rapidly year on year, and there are definitely some exciting developments to watch out for in the future.
Hiring an Agency
You may not think of hiring a content strategy agency as a way to improve your own B2B content marketing strategy, but it’s fast becoming one of the top ways companies level up their execution. Here’s why — content marketing requires many moving parts and frequent, high-quality, high-volume content publishing. When you are running a business and focusing on serving your customers, content inevitably takes a back seat sometimes.
The problem is that your strategy then loses momentum, and you then lose potential customers to your competitors.
When you hire an agency, you have a dedicated, full-time team focused on your content. You can count on optimized content, reliable delivery, frequent publishing, and a data-driven approach. While it may mean a financial investment up front to hire your new agency, outsourcing content marketing ultimately saves companies up to 90% compared to what they’d pay to hire, equip, and manage an internal content team.
Boost Results from Your B2B Content Marketing Strategy Today
Content marketing offers too many benefits to ignore, but not everyone has the time or resources to be able to write and produce their own content in-house. Hiring a writer or the services of a content marketing agency like ours help you to produce higher quality content, save you time and money, and put you in a better position to achieve your business goals.
If you’re interested in getting more traffic and leads for your website, or documenting your content marketing strategy, check out our Blog Writing Service. Setup a brief consultation and I’ll send you a free PDF version of my books!