This is a guest post by Anupriya Basu. Anupriya is a writer and content marketing specialist at BuyAutoInsurance.com. She is involved in researching and writing SEO-optimized content for the auto insurance sector.
Unless you’re already famous and have a huge engagement on social media, you will need to make an elaborate content marketing plan to connect with your target market.
If you’re thinking that your product or solution will automatically pull people to your website, you’re mistaken.
Google’s search algorithm has undergone a major overhaul and to rank on the search engine’s pages, you must create content that answers what people are asking online.
Don’t worry, well-thought out content marketing efforts can reap amazing results just like researching auto insurance can get you the best quotes.
However, you must chalk out a plan to get those results and answer questions like:
- Who’s your target market?
- What is your target market reading online?
- How can you make your content better than competitors?
- What are your content marketing goals?
What you do in content marketing for a B2B company is quite different from the strategies for a B2C company because the target market in the former is focused, and the buying cycle is longer.
Since your target market takes longer to make a decision, you have to continuously lure them with engaging content.
The fundamental idea behind B2B content marketing is that companies also use search engines to find solutions to their problems, and if your business doesn’t rank there, you will miss out on potential clients.
Let’s jump into the tips that will get you started with your content marketing strategy.
Create a Storyline Around Your Brand
You might be in favor of talking about just your product on the landing page of your website; however, you have to think if that kind of content will make an impact on your audience.
If your answer is no, you should think about weaving a story around your product or solution.
Check the website of any company these days; they talk about how their product can solve your problem or why they started their company. They tell stories to make their businesses seem more human.
The First Round website is a great example of how you can connect with your target market.
Though this company focuses on providing the first round of capital to startups, they specifically emphasize the importance of hiring the best or connecting with a community of entrepreneurs to start out for a smooth journey in building something new.
Every page of this company’s website tries to address problems that aspiring entrepreneurs might be facing in starting their company.
The visual look of the website matters, but so does the content on each page.
Take a look at the philosophy of the First Round. You can see how they are offering much more than the initial round of funding.
Whenever you’re creating content for your website or social media accounts, avoid the following in the beginning:
- Content that talks so much about your product it fails to communicate the value you’re trying to offer.
- Focusing way too much on selling that it puts off the person coming to your website.
If you’re finding difficulty in creating a storyline, try thinking from the perspective of your target audience or what you would like to read in a website.
Create different storylines, get feedback from others, make changes, and then publish the final words.
In between all this, keep search engine optimization (SEO) in mind! Truly, it’s not rocket science; it’s including keywords that your audience is searching online in a smart way.
See What Your Competitors Are Doing
This becomes all the more important when it comes to online content. Your content is ranked against your competitors’, so it’s crucial to see what they’re doing online.
You might run out of new content ideas for your business, but taking a quick look at other companies in your industry can give you tons of topics to write on.
You also have the option to break your content into different formats, such as:
Words make an impact, but that’s not the only thing you should focus on because the attention span of people is much lower these days.
That’s why making an infographic or a short explanation video can bring variety as well as engage your audience better at times than a 2,000 word article.
Of course, we aren’t downplaying the importance of long articles or how-to guides — it’s all about keeping a balance.
And that’s why you should keep checking for your competitors’ content. If you notice that a lot of companies in your industry are creating infographics or publishing original research, you should consider doing something similar.
Webinars are also a great way to communicate how you’re trying to solve a problem or a trend that might impact an industry. You just have to host a great webinar to make a mark.
For instance, this short 3-minute video from MuleSoft explains what APIs are in a creative and simple way.
Make Your Keyword Research Strategy Perfect
As a new business, you’re trying to rank with Google’s algorithm which looks for relevant content on your website.
Whenever a user types in a string of words in the search bar, Google tries to answer that with pages matching the context and intent of the user’s question.
Rather than just focusing on what you feel might work, you have to conduct a keyword research to make your content more relevant for users.
Google’s keyword planner is the first place you can look for keywords in your industry. But there are other ways to find out what users are asking, such as with short-tail and long-tail keywords.
With short-tail keywords, you can reach out to a larger customer base; however, the chances of conversion are low because of low intent. When someone types in just a word or two in search engines, they’re usually in the initial stage of their research.
With long-tail keywords, you can target a highly-focused group of people who are in an advanced stage of considering your product or solution.
Let’s take an example of what a company looking for cyber security solutions might search. This is the result you get when you type “cyber security solutions” in the search bar.
A small business owner might start his/her search with this search string, and you can check the competition for this keyword on Google’s keyword planner.
However, when you scroll down this page, you will get to see the other keywords people are using to search for a solution.
Here’s what you will get if you keep going down the search result page. This is a good starting point to know what people look for in the market.
Do you notice how specific some of these questions are?
If you add these keywords in your website or search engine ads, there’s a higher probability for you to rank than a generic keyword.
Another interesting way to find out what keywords are working is to check the ads that come up when you type in a keyword for your industry.
This will give you an idea of what keywords are working in the industry because the leading players are using those in their ads.
Or maybe stay away from these generic keywords because the competition is high.
Create a Social Media Presence
It’s true that social media has a reputation for getting leads and conversions in the B2C market; however, don’t write it off as a wasteful effort for B2B.
Almost everyone is active on one social media platform or another.
That’s why it’s important to assess which platforms your target market is active on to create a presence. It doesn’t make sense to create an account on every available platform.
LinkedIn is one networking platform that works the best for B2B companies, and most companies are already using it to target decision-makers in their industries.
According to LinkedIn, B2B companies get 46 percent of their social media traffic from just LinkedIn. So that’s one platform you must be present on.
Along with sharing relevant content on your company page, you can use LinkedIn Ads Manager to create targeted ads for your audience.
Collaborate With Other Startups
Networking is one business practice that has always reaped fruits for as long as people have existed. So, why not collaborate with other startups, entrepreneurs, and influencers online?
Collaborations with the right people can teach you a lot in content marketing as well as give you ideas about how to create more content for your business.
Here’s how you can leverage collaborations:
- You can write guest posts on other leading blogs on topics that you’re an expert in that will give you a lot of exposure. This can also help you in earning backlinks for your website.
- You can connect with your partners or experts in your field to get insights on a topic that you can publish on your website. Experienced people might give you information that will add value to your content.
- You can connect with influencers in your domain to help you promote your products/solutions and can benefit from an already engaged audience.
To conclude, these tips are just starting points in your entrepreneurship journey and you will learn a lot in content marketing as you follow along.
Just remember to always keep experimenting with new strategies to connect with your audience.