Content Marketing Strategy

Now that 2016 is officially one week old, it’s time to really shake off the confetti and focus your content marketing strategies on the new year. A year in which, according to Content Marketing Institute, 76% of marketers plan to create more content than 2015.

So with this continuous increase in content, what does 2016 look like for B2B marketers? What channels can we target and how can we be most effective?

For those who were able to catch yesterday’s webinar, Marketing Resolutions: 10 Things to Try in 2016, hopefully you’re well on your way to pinpointing some new campaigns and optimizing older assets.

For those who missed the webinar, we discussed 10 important trends and challenges that modern marketers continue to face in the consistently crowded content world and how to help cut through the clutter. We categorized these different approaches into 3 different groups: location, content, and being relevant.


Where is everybody and what are they looking for?

1. Mobile

According to WeAreSocial, 31% of web page views were on mobile devices in 2015 – a 39% increase from 2014. Those numbers will continue to go up in 2016 making it crucial for marketers to plan their content around mobile experiences.

Often with mobile, less is more: Plan your campaigns accordingly and use tools that account for mobile displays and responsiveness, using clean layouts and clear messaging.

2. Video

Imagine if by 2017, 69% of all consumer internet traffic is video. Crazy, right? Well, that’s exactly what Cisco predicted. If you’re not already using video, think of simple ways to add it into your content arsenal.

Simple approaches like recording customer testimonial videos on your phone at events, or turning webinar slides into a video can go a long way. If you’re already using video, optimize your current videos by adding a layer of interactive content to increase new assets and customer engagement.

3. Relationship marketing/ account based marketing (ABM)

Understanding your audience and taking initiatives to further segment them into more specific groups is becoming increasingly important. ITSMA’s 2014 Account-Based Marketing Survey found 80% of marketers measuring ROI believe ABM approaches outperform non-ABM campaigns.

Implementing ABM takes time and resources, so start planning now on how to use marketing automation to organize account data, and making resources available to provide more relevant content for each segment.

4. Customer advocacy

Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up at the top of the sales funnel and always be thinking of new leads and brand awareness. However, keeping the energy level high on a current customer relationship is a great way to spread word-of-mouth referrals and gain social shares.

“A direct referral lead is over 36x more valuable than a lead generated by a cold call, 10x more valuable than a trade show lead, and 4x more valuable than a web lead,” said Ken Krogue, co-founder and president of

Different approaches to customer advocacy can include giving awards and recognition to customer achievements or giving special treatment at events. These programs are easy to promote across many channels and allow users to interact both with your brand and each other.


Making stuff people want.

5. Repurposing content

Having great content is not re-inventing the wheel with each piece – we’re all strapped for time. Most companies only have a few core messages that their content is built around.

By taking a “zoom in, zoom out” approach to your central ideas, you can break large assets into new formats and sub-topics. Take white paper chapters and turn them into blog posts, take research reports and turn them into infographics.

6. “Snackable” content

Similar to repurposing, taking your large core assets and using them in much smaller, bite-size formats allows you to create more content but also to provide a variety to your audience and maybe be more playful.

Without exhausting resources, you can gain valuable metrics about what types of content are performing better and build off of that data. Plus, everyone loves fun, bored-at-work pieces that engage them for a slim 5-10 minutes.

7. Interactive content

To help cut through some of the noise and engage your visitors more uniquely, incorporate interactive elements into your content.

If you’re just experimenting with interactive content, start small by adding short surveys and polls to some of your social posts or at the end of your blogs. This will allow you to learn more from your audience, but also allow them to learn more about themselves, making your content a valued resource.

Being Relevant

Once the content is made – is it resonating?

8. Testing and optimization

If you’re not already testing, you could be leaving a lot of value on the table. Even minor, incremental tweaks over time can have a large impact if you’re landing page or emails are getting thousands of views – a small percentage point can make a big difference.

Use your marketing automation tool to A/B test subject lines, and different messaging. Also check out free testing tools like Optimizely to see what is the right fit.

9. Personalization

In 2016, buyers will have more choice than ever in the content they choose. Personalized subject lines, according to Adestra, are found to be 22% more effective in open rates.

Use merge tags and dynamic text where possible in your emails, and, most importantly, clean your data to reflect your prospects and accounts accurately. A clean database will allow you to segment better and learn what content each segment is responding to.

10. Quality

Last, but not least, the quality vs. quantity argument. For today’s modern marketer, the argument is not really valid anymore. Your content needs to be both of great quality and in large quantity.

Hone in on your core company message: what’s your brand DNA? How are you different? Use those answers to make high-quality “center piece” assets and fuel many channels with different parts and formats from that core piece.


With content increasing more than ever this year, your audience will be inundated with much to choose from. Obviously not all of the approaches we covered can be executed immediately, but when focusing your strategies, the bottom line should always be “how do they serve my customer?” Marketing is always meant to serve your customer, and that’s through WHERE they get the content, WHAT the content is, and HOW relevant it is to them. So in 2016, make sure you’re reaching your customers in the places they are with the content they want.

Don’t forget to watch the full webinar here!