Content Marketing, Content Marketing, Content Marketing. It seems to be the only thing that marketing professionals can talk about these days. Many B2B marketers talk about content marketing without really understanding what it is and why they should care about it.
Rather than re-invent a definition of content marketing, let’s look at how experts define content marketing. The experts at the Content Marketing Institute define content marketing as:
According to this definition, B2B content marketing is a strategic approach to creating content that drives profitable client actions.
By this definition, the term “content” can cover a variety of different elements. Let’s take a look at 5 different types of marketing collateral that you didn’t know were actually content marketing.
1. Your Company Blog
I would actually argue that your blog is the center of your B2B content marketing strategy. Why do I believe this? The blog should be at the center of your content marketing strategy because it’s a way to easily produce consistent content while also providing a foundation for larger content pieces like ebooks, white papers, case studies, press releases, email newsletters, etc.
2. Client Case Studies
Client case studies or client examples are definitely content marketing. The purpose of these content pieces is to guide a potential prospect down the sales funnel and encourage them to become a client. As such, it’s content marketing. When you are designing your case studies or creating client examples, ensure you are answering questions that prospects are posing and share information that will help them to make the decision to become a client.
3. Any Client Communications
That’s right – any client communications. This includes everyday emails, project updates, newsletters, any direct mail pieces, invoices, collection notices, etc. Every touch point with a customer can be considered a chance to market to that client, to retain and to upsell them. Ensure all of your communications with clients and prospects reinforce the overall messaging of your brand and drive “profitable client actions.”
4. Sales Proposal
Yup! B2B content marketing does not end once you get a prospect to the proposal or pitch stage. The sales proposal or pitch may be one of the most important pieces of content marketing you and your team create. It’s often the final piece of content that a prospect engages with before becoming a client or going to a competitor. Make sure your proposal reinforces your brand, is consistent with your other content pieces and positions your firm as the experts.
5. Your B2B Website
Your B2B website should be a living, breathing resource center. It’s often the hub of all your content marketing efforts. All newsletters will drive traffic to your website. The blog is located on your website and should attract traffic to your website. All content pieces live on your website for easy downloads. Social media posts drive visitors to visit your website. Your website should be considered the first step in an overall B2B content marketing strategy. If your website is not current and working well, your content marketing efforts will be in vain.
Got questions about B2B content marketing? We’ve got answers. Send us your questions in the comments below. Check out our guide on Creating Content That Closes Deals and our blog, B2B Content Marketing Tips to Build Relationships.