Senior Marketing Executive, Alison, is a former Forensic Scientist who moved into professional services marketing in 2008 and is a Chartered Marketer and Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (MCIM).
Content Marketing in a B2B Environment
Content marketing is defined as “a type of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs, and social media posts) that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in its products or services.” - Lexico
If you think about your favourite supermarket, they may share recipe ideas using products sold in the shops, rather than promoting the products themselves, or they may have an affiliation with a sports personality to showcase their produce as being healthy and of good quality. They know that you don’t want to hear “buy this chicken, it’s only £3.50” and that you will relate more to “enjoy dinner with the family this weekend”.
The same rules apply if you operate in a business to business (B2B) environment. Clients don’t want to be sold to; they want to build relationships. Start by identifying who your ideal clients are, put yourself in their shoes, work out what their key problems are and focus on solving them.
Here are 4 tips to help keep your content marketing on track:
- Give value. Share news and updates on the topics your clients are interested in, not just what you want to tell them.
- Be authentic. Sick of fake news and media hype? Your clients are too. Be honest and open and report key findings in an unbiased way. Be prepared to reference any statistics or research. And try ‘real’ photos, rather than stock images.
- Humanise your brand. People buy from people, so don’t be afraid of introducing your staff through social media posts, video and podcasts, and let your personality shine through.
- Adapt to online language and jargon. If your business is in a traditional sector like law or accountancy, how will you use language (and dare we suggest emojis?!) to stand out from the competition?
Whilst B2B content marketing can be challenging when it comes to creativity and engagement, it is important to tell convincing and persuasive stories and not just give sales information or self-promotion. Measuring results from content marketing can also help you to improve and amend your strategy. Whether this is through website clicks, leads, impressions or engagement, you can begin to identify what is working and what isn’t with your target audience.
As we talked about in a previous blog, clients in the digital age have greater access to information. With the ease of research and ability to make up your mind about a service, company or individual before even contacting them, content marketing is and will continue to be vital for your business.
Cal Partners is an award-winning marketing agency working exclusively with clients in the professional services sector. Not sure where to start? If you need help with developing a marketing plan for your business, download our free Discovery Document.