Content Marketing: Make Small Changes for Big Results

Content MarketingProspects are swimming in content today — from you and your competitors.

The flood of popularity for content marketing makes it harder each month to stand out from everyone else.

How do you avoid content commoditization? You can use a number of techniques to burn your light brighter than the competition and do it without significant expense.  Most of the tips I suggest in this post don’t require much in upfront costs, just some additional time for brainstorming and production.

Let’s dig into the ways to add value to your content.

Make their job easier

In an average workday, prospects and customers have limited time to consume content.  They often have a computer folder loaded with marketing material they need to read and evaluate.  A vital method to differentiate your company is developing content that’s interactive or quickly absorbed.

While there’s nothing wrong with producing white papers and case studies, also create checklists, cheat sheets, and templates that can reduce and simplify a customer’s workload.

My favorite is templates. You can develop them as content calendars, customer questionnaires, buyer personas, and many other useful tools.

Content Sharing
HubSpot produced a PowerPoint template that lets you add snappy graphics for your content sharing.
Social Media Swipe File
Digital Marketer developed this swipe file of headlines for social media.
Quick Reference
At the end of a white paper for the heavy equipment market, this quick reference table delivers important load material info with an easy, at-a-glance format.


Where to next?

Your content marketing shouldn’t exist in a silo. If you have similar content that may benefit them, tell your prospects and customers where to find it. You often see this in books, with a Further Reading list.  Or online articles, with hyperlinks to related topics.

If you create a SlideShare presentation, do you have additional info on the subject? Then include a link to it.

SlideShare
At the end of a SlideShare presentation, I included a link to my blog entry with more details on the topic.


Adjust your company biography to fit the content

When you read B2B marketing documents like white papers, you see at the end of each document a brief biography of the company that produced the content. 

These bios contain the same text from one document to the next.  They include information about years in business, products and services, and, if a public company, stock market information. 

Sure, it’s easier to cut and paste this section into every document, but you’re wasting an opportunity to position your company. Instead, remind your prospects in the bio section how you solve problems discussed in content they’ve just consumed.

Create customized content

Before the Internet, you had few options to personalize marketing, other than writing your prospect’s name in the salutation of a letter.

The evolution of web analytics has gone far beyond names. It can now analyze a customer’s behavior on your website and other marketing channels, which allows you to develop content that is personal and relevant. In fact, Demand Metric reports, “78% of CMOs think custom content is the future of marketing.”

Custom Content
It may require extra time and resources from your marketing department, but personalization’s positive impact on ROI can pay for itself.


Your company’s reward is better engagement and increased revenue. For example, HubSpot remarks, “personalized calls-to-action result in a 42% higher conversion rate than calls-to-action that are the same for all visitors.”

Here’s another vital reason to personalize content. Google co-authored a study last year that revealed 46 percent of B2B buyers conducting research on future purchases are millennials. This generation expects content tailored to their specific needs and interests. They’re resistant to the mass communication model of marketing.

Conclusion

Even small changes to your content marketing can boost engagement and relevancy. With so much information racing through the Internet pipe every day, it requires nimbleness to adjust content so it distinguishes you from the competition.

Have you discovered other ways to make your content unique in your business sector? Please share them in the comments section.

Free-Content-Audit-Template

Additional Resources:

The Marketer’s Guide to Getting Started With Content Personalization

Content Marketing Personalization: When and How to Use It

The Talking Billboard: Introduction to Personalized Digital Advertising

 

Word cloud image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

David Coyne

David Coyne

David Coyne is a B2B copywriter and marketing consultant with 25 years experience in the business-to-business sector.

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Are You Overwhelmed by Your Content Marketing?

I recently came across an article on the site Social Media B2B about making content marketing more manageable. In the research report B2B Content Marketing: 2013 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends, 64% of marketers stated that their biggest challenge is creating enough content. It got me to thinking what techniques and resources I use for managing both my content production and client projects over the last several years.

I’ve found I employ a combination of cognitive techniques, software and templates to keep the wheels of production turning and the workload under control. Test these yourself:

1) Implement a Time Management System. I never used any specific system until I found Pomodoro. It breaks your activities into 25-minute segments, and it emphasizes focusing on a single chore rather than the more common approach of multitasking. Recommended!

2) Use Boiler Plate Templates. Speed up the structuring of your content with preformatted shortcuts. Although not the only copywriting format I use, the motivating sequence is one of my favourites. Download The Motivating Sequence – Cheat Sheet. Also give these templates from the Content Marketing Institute a look.

3) Determine Your Optimum Times for Productivity. I do most of my challenging creative tasks, such as writing, in the morning when I feel my brain is fresh. I reserve my slow period for less taxing activities, such as answering emails, filing client info and returning phone calls.

4) Write It Down. Developing an outline of major projects keeps things running smoothly. I break down tasks into more manageable chunks. It may sound like extra work, but this technique has really helped me keep on top of projects.

5) Use a Social Media Dashboard. To manage your content posting and distribution, use a program such as HootSuite or Sprout Social. This saves time jumping from one account to another.

I’ve been involved in content creation for two decades, and it does take some time to discover what process works best for your personality and habits. Be open to experimenting.

David Coyne

David Coyne

David Coyne is a B2B copywriter and marketing consultant with 25 years experience in the business-to-business sector.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterLinkedInGoogle Plus