It’s not the piece itself that’s important. It’s the planning and strategy that went into it.
Great levels of coordination go into great content.
In this post we show great examples of B2B content marketing, including the behind-the-scenes work that makes it effective.
By effective I mean reaching performance goals like leads, sales qualified leads and closed-won deals.
These are great examples of B2B marketing.
RingLead Shows You How To Co-Create Content
Co-content creation brings a number of benefits to your online marketing program. In B2B marketing you need to have domain expertise. As educators and experts, you need to reach your target audience by providing valuable insights.
This isn’t easy to sustain.
Tactics like co-creating content means you can build your library without spending enormous amounts of dollars hiring writers and editors. Just start looking for other marketers who fit a specific set of criteria to partner with.
According to Amanda Nelson, Director of Marketing at RingLead, says when looking for partners for your next downloadable e-book, video or podcast, consider the following qualifiers:
Do you market to the same buyers? Your co-marketing partner has an established audience that consumes their content. Teaming up for co-branded content means you can reach their audience, and they can reach yours. This is a major benefit in co-content creation. Reaching a qualified audience without having to pay for it (besides the cost of the actual content production) is huge. Just make sure the audience is qualified to buy your product. You and your partner should know this before creating content.
Are your products and solutions complimentary? If you reach out to marketers with competing products then your outreach efforts may not be fruitful. Your audience should be able to buy both products. This is a good indicator for whether co-content creation makes sense.
Is the marketer an expert in the right domain? Look at what your potential marketing partner has published or talked about in presentations. Proposing to create content around a topic they’re familiar with will make the writing process much faster.
Are they good writers? Again, looking at their existing work, finding good writers means less time stuck in revision Hell.
Creating content in an efficient manner requires agreeing on the concept and the content. Perhaps you’re combining sections from an existing ebook, curating a group of blog posts, or creating a tool. Whatever it is, identifying the ingredients before beginning to produce makes the entire process easier.
The introductions, transitions and conclusions are areas where you have to pay attention when combining content. Co-created content should flow and be cohesive. Every idea should relate, it should be a smooth story.
Transition sentences and paragraphs make co-created content seamless.
Use Google Documents to collaborate. Use the suggestions options and allow your partners to see your changes and accept or give feedback. Use comments, tagging their username to get their feedback.
Be picky in choosing co-marketing partners. It's like putting together a team of superheroes.
If you choose your co-marketing partners well, the back and forth editorial process will be efficient. And you’ll wonder why teamwork isn’t always easy.
You’ll go from Google Docs, to content cover, to content library in no time.
Lastly, Ringlead shows that design matters. Polished looking content is trustworthy content.
It's shallow. But it matters.
LeadGenius Re-Posts Content Well
Publish or perish may exist in academia. But in marketing, it’s publish or miss growing brand awareness.
LeadGenius, a customizable B2B lead generation and data enrichment service, has a good process in place for doing this. They keep content creation efficient.
William Wickey, content marketing manager at Lead Genius, achieves this by asking authors if they can adapt their content to his blog. This makes it easy for authors because they don’t really have to recreate new content.
You're getting great content posted to your site with minimal effort. Not enough?
An even easier tactic is to ask permission to repost published blog posts.
Keep in mind, you should use canonical URLs to avoid duplicate content penalties from Google.
To do this successfully, create a simple template for guest blogger outreach. It should be personalized to the content you’d like to adapt or re-post. State why you like it. State the benefit to the author for publishing it on your website. This shows you’ve read it and convinces authors your publication is valuable.
Here's a great example of an outreach email. Notice the proper choice of links, content and clearly stated request:
We caught up with William Wickey, content marketing manager at LeadGenius, for a quick lesson on content re-posting.
Here's what he said:
I use two tools to identify content for reposting:
I monitor about 200 sales and marketing blogs using The Old Reader. I look for broad trends as well as individual pieces that I think would be a value-add to our audience. If something grabs my attention, I will then start following the links. Each day, I add to the list of people I want to reach out to and then send emails in one batch at the end of the month.
Using BuzzSumo, I start with a topic that is relevant to our audience such as B2B lead generation on Twitter, optimizing sales funnels, SDR training, etc. and identify content that has already had proven engagement elsewhere on the web.
Content re-posting makes up a small part of the top of funnel content strategy at LeadGenius, but it provides a variety of benefits. Stay tuned for a more in-depth post on this topic.
Edifecs Has Great B2B Content Strategy
It’s a broad term. Ask three content strategist to define "content strategy" and you’ll get three different answers.
A good content strategy in B2B marketing provides the most valuable information in the best way possible for your target audience.
One of the best examples I’ve seen of this is Edifec’s resource library. Edifecs is a healthcare IT platform that unifies financial and clinical transactions. As such, they serve a wide range of industry verticals.
The problem they need to address is making it easy for buyers in the research stage to find the content that is relevant to their industry or research stage.
To solve this, Edifecs uses a filter system for users to find exactly the information they’re looking for. It's a great user experience, and a great example of demand generation.
It filters content based on industry vertical and content type. When you select the industry vertical you're in, and select the content type you’re looking for, that content is automatically populated.
Software Advice Uses Industry Reports To Establish Authority
Being a renowned expert comes with many benefits. B2B marketers know well enough that authority and trust is gold when it comes to branding.
It’s hard to measure, as are all brand assets. But brand authority is important.
One way you can achieve this is by publishing industry surveys and studies. Software Advice, a provider of reviews and research on thousands of software applications, publishes studies targeting a variety of verticals. For example, medical, construction, retail, manufacturing, and online marketing software.
When they publish a study their PR managers do outreach to promote the use of their research in a variety of content formats, from blog posts to e-books.
Software advices makes sure writers and publishers get first crack at breaking the news. They email writes and marketers prior to publishing the report. The email includes links, turn-key bullet points and information on how to attribute credit to Software Advice.
Essentially, they make it easy for you to use their stats and findings. These are essential steps for a good B2B content marketing workflow if you’re publishing your own studies. Put on your PR and media relationships hat if when publishing a study or survey.
Here’s an example email from Software Advice.
Notice how it is personalized, pointing out our Pipeline Marketing blog and findings from the survey.
Act-On Creates Free Tools To Generate Demand
Free samples work for food products, why not B2B or SaaS products?
A free tool sounds easy to create. But it’s only easy for one person: the end-user.
A free tool like a software app can require the same level of effort as the paid tool. But if done correctly, it can drive significant demand for your product.
Free tools must fill a need. It should fill a need for qualified buyers and be designed to grow user adoption organically.
It should be easy to share and find it’s way in front of champions who will freely promote it in the right online communities.
Lastly, you should be collecting lead contact information. The more valuable your tool, and the more resources you spent creating it, the more sales qualification information you should collect from users.
A free tool should decrease the time it takes for prospects to see the true value of your product. This takes some up front effort, but if you design the campaign correctly, you’ll create a strong channel for lead generation.
Marketing automation platform, Act-On, has three free tools for online marketers. All of which show off the value of it’s platform, giving marketers the ability to use essential tools in online marketing.
For more information, we covered how to build a successful demand generation campaign around a free tool or app.
Integrate Creates Videos For Specific Job Roles
Video content is hot right now. Video content is one of the top five most effective b2b marketing tactic, according to Hubspot. And we previously wrote a deep dive on effective B2B video content.
Rather than posting videos based on themes or topics, Integrate, a media integration platform, created videos that target job roles. It’s a great example of putting users first, and providing information that is most relevant to the page visitor.
Ninety-five percent of B2B buyers prefer shorter content formats, this may be true for B2B researchers who are often not the buyer or budget authority. Millenials now make up the vast majority of B2B researchers, meaning they are major consumers of your content.
Integrate offers researchers and prospects two minute videos describing how each type of job role can benefit from the platform.
For people who prefer to watch instead of read, videos are a no-brainer.
Creating short, relevant messaging requires getting your buyer persona correct from the beginning. More on creating the right B2B buyer persona here.
That's All For Now
There are numerous B2B content marketing examples that can inspire your demand generation program. Follow our blog for continued coverage on B2B online marketing.