We are moving quickly from “content clutter” to “content saturation”. Social media platforms, such as Facebook, now direct stories into members’ news feeds based in part on how much time they spent recently on similar stories. This removes any doubt that you are going head-to-head with your competition. The right B2B content mix may make the difference between being seen and being buried.
Content consumption is constant
A few generations ago, we only spent about two hours a day consuming content. We read the newspapers and maybe a trade magazine or two. We watched the evening news. Today, web-based content is accessed all day, every day. We now consume as much as an estimated 11 hours of content daily. We’re on our devices as we eat, socialize and work.
What’s going to make the right people want to read your content?
B2B marketers who actively work a well-planned content marketing strategy believe they are more effective than those who shy away from it. At least one study has confirmed that nearly 73 percent of sales people who used social media to sell, outperformed their peers.
Some B2B marketers fear running out of things to say. There’s only so much they can tell people about their brand. This concern evaporates when you use a content strategy that pulls ideas from various sources.
B2B content mix resources
While original content is best for your promotional communications, it’s not necessary to post new content every time, in every channel. Here are some other sources which, when used correctly, can position you as a trusted expert in your industry.
- Earned content: Your PR efforts are a gold standard. Reposting your media coverage provides you with credible, unbiased reviews by journalists. Earned also includes testimonials from your customers.
- Shared content: Share or “curate” content from other useful sources which relates directly to your industry and/or brand. This includes helpful resources, industry news, videos and customer-contributed content. Sharing it “as is” is a great way to bring other perspectives into your content mix.
- Owned content: This is why most people jumped onto your page in the first place. Owned content includes white papers, research reports and other brand-related information. This is also where readers expect to see a call to action. Make sure it’s there!
Build your community
Social media gives you a valuable opportunity to listen to, and engage with, your audience. Create a sense of community by asking questions, taking polls and posting other conversation starters. Use hashtags to help all participants monitor the feedback and remarks.
How much of each content type?
Try varying your content mix by channel. Facebook and Twitter are more social. They are ideal for promoting events and building a following. Your blog can be a more formal mix of owned, shared and earned. The right percentages may vary by your product and industry.
Start with the 60/20/20 rule, and adjust as you monitor your analytics results. That’s 60 percent shared or curated content, 20 percent owned (promotional) and 20 percent earned (publicity, testimonials). Your goals should include sales and customer retention. Consistently providing people with high-quality content will keep them coming back.