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B2B Lead Generation: The Power of Content Marketing

Content Marketing

B2B Lead Generation: Content is King!

Without a doubt, social media participation has taken off in the B2B world in 2012.  We have seen a surge in business blogging, infographics, and online videos.  Businesses are learning how to harness the power of social media platforms to promote their content for increased reach.  Companies are successfully attracting leads and increasing conversions via inbound methods. The increased success for B2B inbound marketing in general stems from the marked improvement in the relationships between buyers and sellers during the sales process.  The primary, and probably most important goal of the inbound process – lead generation – has certainly seen growth.  The main reason for increased lead generation via inbound methods is attributable to the power of content.

B2B Inbound Marketing: Effective Content Required

B2B marketing is traditionally seen as rigid and structured.  Indeed, many companies still strongly adhere to the strategy of generating leads via direct marketing methods such as cold calling, trade shows, and email blasts. In direct marketing, a company may share its content through printed materials.  Inbound marketing is changing the game for B2B marketers.  Rather than generating leads through the “interruption” methods described above, inbound marketing seeks to attract potential leads via online techniques such as social media and SEO (search engine optimization).  Inbound marketing cannot happen effectively without online content, so a blog for your website is a top priority. The nature of your company’s content will vary depending on your products and solutions, so it is crucial to identify your target market and niche.

In B2B Marketing, Relevant, Engaging Content is Key

Creating your content won’t happen easily at first. You may worry about your writing skills or the depth of your knowledge, for example.  A good piece of advice is to keep your audience, or target market, in mind, and this will assist you in creating content.  It may not happen naturally at first, but the writing process really does get easier the more you do it.  It may also help to remember that people are drawn to your content because they like it, not because they are forced to view it.  In other words, create content that you personally would enjoy reading, and steer away from sounding pushy or sales-y.  Lead generation is more likely to occur when your content appeals to the reader on a personal level.  Which leads me to another important piece of advice – be yourself and be genuine when creating content.  It’s true that you need to produce good content when lead generation is your goal.  Creating content that resonates with your potential leads is the key to attracting them to your website.

Effective B2B Inbound Marketing Has Passion and is Consistently Branded

Inbound B2B buyers are a progressively savvy group who know what they are looking for and how best to find it.  To achieve the full power of your content for lead generation, it is imperative for your blog posts to be completely connected with your brand and what you represent.  Potential leads and buyers want to know what you can do for them, and how you can do it better than your competition.  I recently heard Jack Krawczyk, the Head of Monetization for StumbleUpon, speak in person at the 2012 Dallas Digital Summit.  This is one thing he said that really stuck with me:  “People don’t buy what you do – they buy why you do it”!  In other words, your leads want to know what you stand for and why you stand for it.  I find this to be an important reminder as I create content for my own blog, since this sentiment resonates quite strongly with B2B buyers.  When you have passion for your company and its products or solutions, it is obvious to your leads.  The power of your content is affirmed through passion, and is something potential leads will certainly notice.

In summary, it remains important to remember the mantra, “content is king” when planning your B2B lead generation strategy.  The more attractive your content is to your target market – because it has resonated with them on some level – the more likely you are to see measurable increases in lead generation. Never underestimate the power of content.

What are you doing to take your content marketing to the next level?

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  1. Indeed, Content is King, I agree with this post and I like the quote “People don’t buy what you do – they buy why you do it”!. Thanks for sharing Jennifer.

  2. Agree totally and am so curious about folks that simply ignore this important concept and simply play in the pay per click world. I have even launched a content development part of my business for as a sales trainer (http://www.adrianmiller.com) I often see that this is one component in a person’s sales plan that is sorely missing. I will definitely share your views.

    • I appreciate your comments and also your insights, Adrian. Hopefully more people will begin to understand and share the same views about content!

    • Mark Salke says:

      Hi Adrian,

      I agree that content is very important to an integrated marketing effort, but if you’re driving clicks for e-commerce, really, what beats PPC Ads?

  3. This is spot on. I agree ‘content is King’ – but it’s often hard to get inspired to create that awesomely, engaging content that viewers love and share.

    I stumbled upon this gem INFOGRAPHIC and wrote about it – as a tool for inspiration:
    B2B Lead Generation & Inspiration from Pixar http://t.co/6s1FkXxw

    I printed out the INFOGRAPHIC and pinned it up in my office! When content marketers find a way to feed the creative beast that’s required for great content, all the other great tips pointed out here will benefit even more, I think.

    -Michael

    • I appreciate the comments, Michael. So true, it’s not always easy to find inspiration to write compelling and engaging B2B marketing posts – but I think we’re getting better at it.

      Thanks, too, for sharing the Pixar infographic – what a fun infographic and post! I like your idea of printing it out- it does serve as a great reminder that we never know what will inspire us.

  4. Jennifer,
    Many people write great content and content definitely is the king. However, I liked the fact that you mentioned, “Engaging Content is the real Key”.
    Thank you for sharing. It is an awesome article!
    Regards,
    Kumar

  5. frances peterson says:

    Yes its true! having a good content in your blog is additional point for your b2b lead generation strategy. Sometimes we are worried about our skills in our writings but as what they say, practice makes perfect. All we need is a little bit of self-esteem in things we do.

    • I really like that, Frances, and it is true – practice does get us all a little closer to perfect – and good self-esteem goes a long way!

      Thanks for your comments, I appreciate it.

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