If you’re in the business of B2B marketing, you may have seen the latest report from the Content Marketing Institute and Marketing Profs. The latest online marketing trends for 2014 clearly show the state of content marketing, what’s working and what isn’t, and how you can fix it. Some of these strategies you may already know and some you may not. And yes, some of these may take a little more time than you think you have, however, that will be time well spent. While the choice of yours, it is definitely in your best interest to take advantage of what is working and make changes to what isn’t.
You Should Be Using Content Marketing
Chances are that if you’re reading this blog, you’re already interested in content marketing. If you’ve already tried your hand at it, you are not alone. According to the latest numbers, 93 percent of B2B marketers are using content marketing to reach their target demographics and grow their customer base.
Now, just because the majority of B2B marketers are using content marketing, doesn’t mean they’re doing it in the most effective way possible. Using effective content marketing strategies is your chance to publish stellar content that your customers need and want. What services do you offer that can really help another business?
One more thing to think about is this: if 93 percent of B2B marketers are using content marketing, you’ve got to be at the top of your game. You’ll be working in a highly competitive environment.
Create More Content
One of the biggest mistakes that content marketers make is not producing enough content. Nothing will alienate your audience faster than sporadically posting content, no matter how great and useful it might be. Consistency is the key here, and you should be posting at least two to three times a week. Don’t feel overwhelmed, though. Not all content has to come from you; featuring guest writers and interviews with industry experts counts as great content publishing, too.
However, even if you are posting more content than ever before it doesn’t mean it’s good content. Are you farming out your blogs and content to writers who don’t understand who you are and what you do? That is a costly mistake. If you think your customers can’t tell bad writing from good writing, you’re wrong. Start analyzing how well each post you publish does. Take note of what doesn’t work and see if there is an easy way to fix it. It might be something as simple as tweaking the post title. Just as importantly, notice the type of content that is working well for you. If it works well, keep doing it.
Integrate You Campaigns
You can’t just rely on one campaign through one channel and expect to get the most effective results. You should post your content through various social media channels; which ones depends on who the target demographic for your content is. All of your campaigns should be integrated as well. Link each campaign so that you can offer up your best content across all of your content platforms. Get your potential customers to sign up for a newsletter, like your page, and follow your posts.
Once your campaigns are integrated, make sure you are tracking your conversions. It’s great to have a huge email list to send out all of the great content you post, but you also need to make money to keep posting. You need to track who does convert to real, paying customers by monitoring your conversions. You’ll maximize your time and effort, and hopefully stop wasting time focusing on dead ends.
Know What’s Working and What Isn’t, and Fix It
Just because you are doing content marketing doesn’t mean your using it in the most effective way. You might be doing some things well, and be lacking in other areas. If you really want your business to take off, you’ve got to be able to recognize where your marketing campaign is lacking. Once you’ve identified those weaknesses, fix them. It really does no good to know where you’re lacking, but do nothing to change it.
Here are some of the top 10 content marketing tactics that you should be doing if you want to grow your business:
2) Social Media (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest)
4) Invite guest writers to post on your site.
5) Guest posts on other sites
6) Study and post case studies that will support market trends and the latest findings.
7) Create a webinar
9) Mix up your media, and post videos whenever you can.
10) Get into the conference scene and present your expertise and how you can help other businesses with your skills.
Document Your Strategy
What are you doing to document your marketing campaign strategies? Are you doing anything at all? Going along with the idea that you need to fix what isn’t working, if you don’t know what’s working and what isn’t, you can’t fix it. You don’t want to create a random campaign that doesn’t have an overall goal and real strategies behind it. It looks sloppy, and you’ll lose customers if you’re even able to attract them in the first place. Online marketing is systematic and strategic.
A few things you should keep in mind when documenting your marketing efforts:
1) What are you posting and why?
2) Where are you posting it?
3) How often are you posting?
4) Do you have a goal and a strategy on how to get there?
5) How many clicks, shares and downloads did each post get?
6) Are you following up with important comments and questions?
7) Are your writers and social community managers in touch and communicating with each other?
8) Share parts of your strategy with your customers. You don’t have to give away all of your secrets, but you are there to help, and if you’re successful, you should be sharing that secret to success.
You may not be able to employ all of these tactics, but you should try to do most of them. And yes, according to the latest content marketing report, the number one complaint that marketers have is lack of time. So everyone is in the same boat. If you want your online business to be successful, find the time to employ strategic tactics so that you can make the most of your precious time so that you can set yourself up for success.