Creating B2B marketing content is a significant investment of time and money. That’s why it’s essential to understand the reasoning behind all that content.
That’s where your content marketing strategy comes in.
What Is a Content Marketing Strategy?
A content marketing strategy is your action plan to attract prospects to your brand and convert them into customers using marketing content. Think of it as the roadmap for your marketing campaigns.
According to Content Marketing Institute, 69% of top-performers in B2B content marketing have a documented content strategy.
To contend with the best, your team needs to learn how to create a content marketing strategy that is not only engaging but informative in key areas of focus for your audience.
How to Develop a Content Marketing Strategy
The good news is, your content marketing strategy doesn’t have to be complicated. You can get started in a few straightforward steps.
1. Start with Your Marketing Content “Why?”
From the outset, it’s important to understand what you want your content to achieve.
Do you want your assets to generate traffic?
Maybe you’ll use the content to help qualify marketing leads, providing them with whitepapers in exchange for their email addresses.
Or will you create in-depth content to build your credibility as a thought-leader in your industry?
Most likely, you’ll do a combination of content based on your most pressing marketing needs (like filling your sales pipeline with quality leads).
PRO TIP: Does your content pass the “So what?” test? Put yourself in the target customer’s shoes and test your content with “So what?” A blog post headline that says, “We won the best-in-class award again last year,” might earn a reader’s “So what?” response. Instead, use a headline that focuses on their pain point.
2. Create Your Buyer Personas
You can create content all day, but if your target audience doesn’t relate to it, you’re wasting your time. That’s where your buyer personas come in. These are representations of your ideal customer.
And who knows your customers the best? Most likely, it’s your sales reps.
Get together with your sales team to understand your ideal customers’ attributes.
Dig beyond the dollar amount.
Maybe the sales team’s favorite customer was easy to work with and motivated to move the sale forward (shortening the sales cycle). And to sweeten the deal, maybe they jumped on the multi-year contract.
With that knowledge, you can define the problems your product solves for your ideal customer and use that information to guide your strategy.
3. Assess Your Existing Content
You’ll want to take a look at the content you’ve created, taking into consideration ROI.
Has your recent content performed as well as you’d like? Maybe there’s room for improving your marketing content — from rethinking quality over quantity to understanding how your target audience consumes it.
4. Collaborate on B2B Content Marketing Ideas
As a marketer, you’re probably stretched thin with existing tasks. That said, creating your content marketing strategy isn’t a solitary process.
In fact, collaborating on the strategy with colleagues across the organization will do a couple of things:
- You’ll have the opportunity to align the sales and marketing teams — a valuable opportunity for understanding how the content can help both teams qualify leads.
2. The strategy will take on more meaning if others in the organization know about it during the development process. That includes getting buy-in from key stakeholders and making them part of the process rather than ‘selling’ the finished product to them after the fact.
Get Your Content Marketing Strategy up and Running
Content creation is an ongoing and necessary process for attracting the ideal prospects to your brand.
However, rising above the content noise to reach prospects requires knowing who you’re targeting and the problem they need to solve.
And that starts with your content marketing strategy — your action plan for reaching your target audience, bringing them closer to your brand, and (hopefully) converting them into customers.