B2B Content Marketing Secrets

According to Content Marketing Institute’s latest report, B2B marketers’ biggest challenge is producing enough content to feed their online channels. As an agency managing content marketing initiatives for our clients, we learned that content quantity is key for driving traffic, but the secret sauce lies elsewhere.

B2B Content Dirty Little Secret

Creating a lot of content is easy, however it is not necessarily the most important goal. The most important goal is to create content that translates to measurable benefits (website traffic over time, lead generation, utilization of social channels) in a given budget. While content marketing becomes key for marketing teams, and by proxy to reaching business goals, it should be viewed as a business activity and measured as such. Also, one should take into consideration that it is perfectly okay to redistribute old content – if it still brings value to readers. Therefore, a content plan should be viewed as a long term effort. In order to creative both effective and efficient B2B content programs, we’ve learned is that the trick is to mix and match different content types and spread them across the editorial calendar. Though the traditional “one post per week” method still works, it brings limited value compared to a more sophisticated approach that we will present in this and future posts.

Evaluating Content Types

Before we create a content plan we need to establish the parameters used to compare different content types. We analyze content types based on the following parameters:

  1. Engagement level – how engaging is the content, measured by amount of distribution it receives on online channels by users. The more people share this content, or engage with our client based on this content, the more engaging it is. In this context, engagement is not a vague parameter – it is a quantifiable item in our plan and ongoing monitoring.
  2. Shelf life – how long will this content item be relevant? Some content pieces are relevant months (and sometimes years) after they were written, and some are irrelevant a day or two after they were published.
  3. Effort and resources – yes, that annoying thing called budget is playing a key role here too. If we are aiming for an effective online presence, how can we optimize our resources to provide the best value for our marketing efforts? That’s a tricky one.

So how to create an effective and efficient B2B content marketing operation? We will touch that point in our next post.