B2B Content Marketing

Part
01
of two
Part
01

Best Practices - B2B Content Marketing Strategies

Some three best practices for B2B content marketing are measuring success, embracing user-generated content (UGC), and knowing the target audience by creating buyer personas.

Measure Success

  • According to research, more than 50% of B2B marketers fail to properly document and fully utilize analytics, thus making it difficult to measure the success of the campaign.
  • According to the Content Marketing Institute, the following are the most important metrics, according to B2B marketers:
    • Sales Lead Quality (87%)
    • Sales (84%)
    • Higher Conversion Rates (82%)
    • Sales Lead Quantity (71%)
    • Website Traffic (71%)
    • Brand Lift (69%)
    • SEO Ranking (67%)
    • Customer Renewal Rates (66%)
    • Purchase Intent (64%)
    • Subscriber Growth (62%)
  • As per G2 Crowd, each B2B marketer has different goals, so a good rule of thumb is to ensure that one determines their KPIs, monitor relevant analytics, and keep track of the most critical metrics that count towards achieving the goals.
  • According to the Content Marketing Institute, return on investment should be measured with 55% of the most successful B2B organizations measuring their content marketing ROI. Average B2B marketers spend 26% of their total marketing budget on B2B content marketing, while the most successful ones spend 40% of their marketing budget on B2B content marketing.
  • Some analytical tools used to measure content ROI are Google Analytics, MonsterInsights, Hotjar, BuzzSumo, and Hubspot CRM.

Embrace User-Generated Content

Know Your Audience and Create Buyer Personas

RESEARCH STRATEGY:

We were able to determine these three best practices by compiling lists of best practices from reputable sites such as Forbes, G2, Entrepreneur, Content Marketing Institute, and from B2B content marketing experts like Neil Patel. These three best practices are mentioned four times out of five lists we compiled. Also, we have included success metrics and quantitative data for each best practice, and these are the main reasons why we have considered these three as best practices. Neil Patel was featured in INC and was labeled as one of the most successful and ubiquitous digital marketers. He is a New York Times, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and IndieBound bestseller and was recognized by President Obama and the United Nations as one of the top 100 entrepreneurs under 35. His clients include Amazon, eBay, Google, Salesforce, NBC, General Motors, Hewlett Packard, and Viacom. Thus, we can be confident that the data from his company and blog is reliable and credible.

Part
02
of two
Part
02

Best Practices - Developing Content Marketing For B2B Content Marketing Campaigns

Three best practices for developing content for B2B content marketing campaigns are creating (1) guides/helpful content, (2) evergreen content, and (3) video content.

Findings

1. Guides/Helpful Content

  • One best practice for developing content for B2B content marketing campaigns is to include guides and other helpful types of content as part of such.
  • Including helpful content as part of a B2B marketing campaign is important because it helps a company establish trust and authority among readers/customers.
  • In fact, an article published by Entrepreneur Magazine said that the premier way to established trust and authority is through publishing helpful content.
  • Creating helpful content as part of the campaign is an implicit marketing tactic, as it deviates from a traditional selling mode. That deviation is valuable though, as noted in the following statement from the aforementioned Entrepreneur Magazine article: "If . . . content [is] too promotional, people will eventually lose the trust and faith they have in . . . [a] company, and" said company will ultimate lose or hinder its authority.
  • Rather, the point of creating helpful content is for companies to prove how helpful/valuable their services are, while doing so in a non-selling manner.
  • Creating guides and other helpful types of content is a best practice for a B2B content marketing campaign because (1) it was expressly described as such by at least two reputable sources and (2) due to the statistics included above showing its effectiveness.
  • Guides are a specific type of helpful content that is best practice to include as part of a B2B campaign.
  • One reason why guides perform so well is because "they receive 10% more backlinks than other types of content."
  • It's recommended that guides be as unique as possible and provide content that people can't find elsewhere.
  • Creating guides and other helpful types of content is a best practice for a B2B content marketing campaign because (1) it was expressly described as such by at least two reputable sources (Entrepreneur Magazine and Business 2 Community) and (2) due to the statistic included above showing its effectiveness.

2. Video Content

  • A second best practice for developing content for B2B content marketing campaigns is to create video content.
  • Video content is widely recognized as "the most engaging" type of content.
  • A survey found that "59% of B2B decision-makers prefer video over text content."
  • The use of video content is prevalent among companies' B2B marketing efforts, as 87% of companies produce such content. The popularity of video content has been on the rise, as just 63% of companies produced video content for marketing in 2017.
  • Videos are effective because they tell stories, is personalized, and increases time people spend on websites.
  • Creating video content is important for a B2B content marketing campaign because of its strong return on investment (ROI). Eighty-three percent of marketers believe video content yields a solid ROI.
  • Usage of video content is less common among smaller companies, largely due to the perceived work level required for such. However, there are simplified video creation tools like Lumen5 that make video content creation easy and fast to do.
  • Video content is also linked to evergreen content, as a study conducted by BuzzSumo found that video content "holds its value and is shared on social media much longer than other forms of content."
  • Video content also boosts SEO rankings, as it was determined that "it is 53 times easier to rank a video in Google’s search results than other content."
  • Creating video content is a best practice for a B2B content marketing campaign because (1) it was expressly described as such by at least two reputable sources (Vende Social and Business 2 Community) and (2) due to the statistics included above showing its effectiveness.

3. Evergreen Content

  • A third best practice for developing content for B2B content marketing campaigns is to create evergreen content.
  • Evergreen content is content that remains relevant long past when it was first published. As such, evergreen content doesn't become outdated, which is possible through the information it communicates. For example, evergreen content might address universal truths about a particular industry, rather than talking about the latest trends.
  • Evergreen content is so important to include, as part of a B2B content marketing campaign, because it's known for yielding a strong ROI, as it will continue to retain its value to readers, without becoming outdated.
  • In developing evergreen content, it should be detailed and in-depth.
  • To ensure that content becomes evergreen, the right keywords need to be used to cover those most people are including in their search terms.
  • Within 30 days, blog posts with evergreen content receive up to a 283% increase in traffic compared to seasonal/news-related ones.
  • Even during the second and third months after it's published, evergreen content has "an average of 30% return on traffic."
  • Creating evergreen content is a best practice for a B2B content marketing campaign because (1) it was expressly described as such by at least two reputable sources (Precision Marketing Group and MarTech Advisor) and (2) due to the statistics included above showing its effectiveness.

Your Research Team Applied the Following Strategy:

We identified the three best practices included above by looking for best practices specific to developing content for B2B content marketing campaigns. To do so, we reviewed numerous, credible sources that have published articles about such, ranging from marketing sources such as Precision Marketing Group to media-related publications such as Entrepreneur Magazine. As is noted above, we ensured that each of the best practices is indeed a best practice by finding each expressly described as such by at least two credible sources, as well as through statistics showing its effectiveness.
Sources
Sources

From Part 01
Quotes
  • "More than half of B2B marketers fail to fully utilize analytics to effectively track and measure success. Without a documented strategy and without utilizing analytics, there’s no way to know for sure if your campaigns are effectiv"
Quotes
  • "B2B decision-makers value the opinions of other professionals when making buying choices, and persuasive user-generated content helps inspire them to take action. You can encourage UGC with influencers, search out great UGC via hashtags and keywords and prompt existing customers to contribute to your UGC by rewarding them for doing so. "
Quotes
  • "This entry goes right along with the previous tip. To know if you are meeting goals, you have to determine KPIs, monitor relevant analytics, and keep track of the most important metrics that truly matter to your overall goals."
  • "Displaying reviews can increase conversion rates by up to 270%. If you're a B2B company selling software or services, claim your free G2 profile in minutes to create content that converts. "
  • "Recently, CMI stated in its B2B Content Marketing Research that teams that create well-researched personas were successful, but only 42 percent of B2B companies were actually talking to their customers."
Quotes
  • "Today, nearly all top-performing B2B content marketers – 90% – put their audience’s informational needs ahead of their company’s sales/promotional message."
Quotes
  • "Percentage of total marketing budget allocated to content marketing (average) 40%"
Quotes
  • "Neil can count brands like Amazon, eBay, Google, Salesforce, NBC, General Motors, Hewlett Packard, and Viacom among his clients. He's also led presentations for staff at major companies including Facebook and Thomson Reuters."
  • "He was also named one of the top 100 entrepreneurs under the age of 35 by the United Nations, and was awarded a Congressional Recognition by the U.S. House of Representatives."
  • "In 2016, Neil co-authored Hustle: The Power to Charge Your Life with Money, Meaning, and Momentum. The inspirational career guide is a New York Times, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and IndieBound bestseller."