78% of CMOs believe custom content is the future of marketing – Social Times
With B2B buyers now completing around 60% of the sales cycle before they make contact with a salesperson, if you can’t manage to engage with them during their research stage, you may never convert them to a customer at all. Obviously, outbound marketing channels like email and telemarketing can be used with highly targeted data to reach a large group of prospects. But, if you want prospective customers to find your company organically (in order to keep costs down and generate business growth) you’ll need a different approach...
A hot topic for demand generation and business growth in recent years has been content. With its relatively lower cost compared to traditional channels, content has the potential to attract and convert leads 24/7. Whether it’s white papers, ebooks, tip sheets or infographics, content is basically information that will show an understanding of the prospects’ pain points; suggest a potential solution; and position the company as a thought leader within the industry. The important factor when growing a business organically with content is that the information must help the reader in some way; and the content should be ‘gated’ behind a form on a landing page. This means that when the prospect completes the form to download the contact, they are then open to be contacted again on the details they submitted (such as email and phone number etc).
During the research stage of the buying cycle, B2B buyers are most likely to use the internet to gather information. The starting point for this investigation is typically search engines, and this is where blogs become priceless. Thanks to the search engines’ thirst for new content, blog posts are an excellent channel for search engine optimised text. Basically, by writing blog posts (of at least 400 words) based on keyword phrases you know your prospects will be using, you are more likely to see your blog posts appear higher on the search engine results pages.
Thought leadership and engaging text will draw the prospect to your blog post, which will ultimately drive them to your landing pages (for conversion to lead status).
B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads than those that don’t – Social Times
With engaging content placed on gated landing pages; and blogs written with search engine optimised text; is there any other way to generate demand and help your business grow organically? There sure is… social media.
Social media sites are a great way to show your organisation’s thought leadership; take part in industry discussions and display a solution to prospects’ problems. The key with social media is ensuring that your organisation is active on sites that are popular with your prospects. If there is no possibility of generating leads from a particular social media network, do not waste time and money posting there. The length of post and tone of voice will be dependent on the channel you’re using; for example LinkedIn is typically more formal than Twitter which is generally short, sharp and punchy. Ultimately though, any post that refers to your product/services, should drive the prospect to a landing page to convert them to a lead.
To find out more about generating B2B leads…