Publish or Perish- The New Paradigm for B2B Marketing? (Part 2 of 2)
A few weeks ago, I posted on the importance of getting your business to think like a publisher. Presuming you buy into the need for this mindset, what do you do about it? If you are a B2B marketer, how exactly do you think like a publisher?
Here are some thoughts:
Create targeted content- It goes without saying that you need to create high quality content. However, you could have videos produced by Steven Spielberg that generate little or no interest from your audience. To build relevance, organizations need to build a range of content that appeals to the broad array of stakeholder interests and concerns associated with what you sell.
Here is what I mean by this. Consider a complex technology solution sale and the number of people who can get involved in the process. Is the content you produce and manage adequately oriented around the business owners, IT personnel, line managers, and contract/procurement teams that all have influence in the buying decision? Is it organized in a way that these influencers can easily learn about the issues that are central to their function in the buying process?
In my own practice, I have observed lots of companies who are trying to reach multiple stakeholders with the same message, through the same channels. At best this results in a mishmash of generalized information that proves to be only marginally useful for engaging the influencers in the buying decision. As well see in an upcoming example, segmenting the message creates an opportunity for better focus and more relevance.
Consider not only who they are but where they are in your relationship-So much of what companies do from a content perspective is oriented around prospecting and closing new business. For businesses whose model is subscription based (e.g., SaaS models), information about how users can generate more efficiency and value from the solutions they already buy can be even more important to the long-term health of a business by further cultivating the relationships they already have.
Make full use of the channels at your disposal-Today’s content distribution mechanisms give you a wide range of options for targeting who you talk to and what you say. Use them to segment the content that you feed to the various constituents you are trying to reach. For example, Dario’s company (from Part I) uses a blog for driving awareness and education and the company home page for driving sales. This bifurcation of purpose allows his company to be extremely focused in messaging and UI design.
Give it to them in the media format that they want- There is lots of choice now on how you communicate with your audience, so don’t force white papers on customers as the only way to learn about your offerings. Besides, have you heard about the Forrester report that states that video increases the likelihood of a front page Google search result by 96%?
Give your audience a voice- I heard a very interesting statistic from SplashMedia, that stated that only 14% of prospective customers were inclined to believe the marketing messages that came directly from the selling organization, while 78% of prospects tended to believe the opinions of other customers. To be sure, giving your customers a voice is a big risk, and may not be such a great idea for companies who are not highly responsive to customer needs and complaints. Then again if you can harness the enthusiasm that people have for your offerings, (as implied by the statistic above) customers can be a great way to generate complementary content that helps close new business.
In the end, keeping these ideas in mind will help you think more like a publisher. While your audience is not paying for your content, it is sacrificing its time and attention to read/listen to/watch what you create. Orienting your organization around building specific messages for the right audience at the right stage in the customer relationship is most likely to generate the engagement that you need for driving and sustaining growth.
Leave a Reply Cancel reply
- Analytical Methods (1)
- Analytics (9)
- B2B Sales and Marketing (15)
- Big Data (1)
- Brand Measurement/Tracking (2)
- Brand Measurement/Tracking (1)
- CEM (1)
- Channel Management (4)
- Cloud Computing (4)
- corporate development (1)
- Data Mining (6)
- Email Marketing (1)
- Enterprise Sales and Marketing (12)
- Enterprise Software (10)
- Evolutionary Computation (1)
- IT Spending (2)
- Marketing (1)
- Peter Fader (2)
- Predictive Analytics (6)
- Sales Effectiveness (10)
- Sentiment analysis (1)
- Services (3)
- SMB (7)
- Social Media in B2B Sales (12)
- Social Media Strategy (9)
- Software (3)
- Strategy (2)
- Technology Sales (8)
- Uncategorized (5)
- WCAI (3)
- What B2C teaches about B2B (1)