Being trapped inside a bubble is one of the biggest problems when generating content, and one of many b2b marketing mistakes that can hold a typical marketer back from producing great content.
It should always be in a marketer’s mind that it’s all about the audience, and that everything we create is content, from blogs, vlogs, and social media to apps or reports and even podcasts. Essentially everything that has your brand or name tied to it.
Aims, Objectives and Adapting your Message
When releasing content, try to consider what the aim of it is. For example, are you trying to increase brand awareness, or perhaps see growth in sales, or maybe improve your reputation or brand’s social media engagement? You’ll need to liaise with your sales team for these but be prepared to take their comments with a pinch of salt!
There are many possible objectives. An example would be a pension company: if they were to target someone in their 20’s they would factor that in, because receiving a pension is not an immediate concern, unlike someone in their 60’s for whom it is. So, the objective of the messaging will need to reflect the targeted audience’s needs – sales and affordability for the former and brand reputation for the latter. These are some factors worth considering when trying to avoid not just b2b marketing mistakes but typical pitfalls that come with the job title.
Questions you need to ask
Let’s be clear: content marketing is hard work. There are no short cuts. So you need to ask yourself five simple questions before you start:
- Do you need to adapt your voice or messaging?
- Does your content meet a need or a problem?
- Does your content suit your audience’s interests?
- How will it translate into social media?
- How will you measure your results?
Once you’ve answered these you are half way to producing good quality, relevant content!
Humans and Algorithms
These are two major factors of considerations for a marketer planning their content, humans and algorithms.
Humans are difficult in all sorts of ways. For example people have short attention spans and prefer ease of use over other considerations. This means they often have a natural preference to access information from mobile applications rather than their desktops, which calls for a simple tone of voice.
Algorithms however are easier, though they continuously change when it comes to the search engines, so keeping an eye on your SERPs and adapting to these changes should be a priority if your brand is to appear high on organic searches.
Trends and Tips
There is so much to be aware of, so my top tip is to never give up learning and reading about other peoples’ experiences.
On a more granular level, here are some key tips:
- Currently videos are getting bigger than ever with platforms such as TikTok booming, with short videos catering to short attention spans. Don’t dismiss it for even the most conservative B2B product or service, as the audience is growing exponentially.
- Podcasts are good! Although you will only reach a limited proportion of your target audience, you will have their undivided attention for 30 minutes!
- Artificial intelligence is ubiquitous throughout all platforms and decides how relevant your content is to the end user, tailoring everything they see. There are endless algorithm to consider, but some to keep in mind relate to engagement traits, time spent on platforms, relevancy, recency of content and existing relationships. Google’s ‘page experience’ algorithms are also crucial.
- UX is more important than ever these days, such as how suited your content is for mobiles, relevancy of your calls to action and links. Patagonia clothing is an excellent example of best practice that uses relevant newsletters that relate to their outdoor-oriented audience and connect with their community with authentic purpose.
- Influencers should never be ignored – they’re in every market. Use them as much as you can, as they’re worth thousands of likes! My influencers are CIM and assorted academics – what are yours?
Content marketing is vital to get right if your position on the SERPs or your website/social media communications are important to you. I hope I’ve given an insight to it, but it’s only really scratching the surface. Do contact me if you would like to discuss yours – I’m always happy to discuss it.
Credit: a big thanks to CIM for Chris Lee’s helpful Webinar on this subject 27.4.22