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3 Innovative Ways B2B Content Marketers Nailed It

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These days, content is as varied, creative, and effective as ever before…which means it’s even more challenging to stand out in the crowd. In the B2B industry, competition is fierce. There are countless ways to use engaging content to drive your business, but which methods will work best for you?

We have picked out a few particularly impressive examples in the hopes that you’ll find a method that resonates with you and your brand. Let’s take a look.

Customer is King

Obviously, your customers (past, present, and potential) are incredibly important to you. So, why not sing their praises to the world? Drift, a conversational marketing service, has elevated customer appreciation into brilliant content marketing, and everybody wins. Here’s how.

First, they feature success stories with their customers on their blog. They talk about how great the company is, and how they were able to help them achieve such amazing success. This shares social proof with potential customers who are in the consideration phase, and assures them they’re on the right track.

There are plenty of examples of customer testimonials, and the reader gets a comprehensive rundown on how the services work, but in an easy to understand, conversational way. Next, the sharing starts, and both companies link back to the other, exponentially raising the share radius and providing some tasty SEO juice in the process.

Drift’s blog is also full of informational content, and the writing is funny and quirky enough to make all of it easy to read. So, you have a great company that clearly loves its customers, happy customers who are willing to testify how great Drift is while enjoying tons of brand exposure, and potential clients who are reassured they’re onto something good. Like we said, everybody wins.

Educate and Sell

There are so many different marketing experts and industry rock stars out there, and they all have great insight and advice to share. Likewise, there are countless new entrepreneurs and startups that need some guidance. Problem is, you have to search and filter through an enormous amount of unorganized and vague posts before you happen upon some relevant industry content, and then hope that it’s well written and pertains to your pain points.

Enter First Round, a thoughtfully curated collection of digital magazines that cover a variety of industries and let the experts do the talking. You need to find and digest this content quickly and efficiently, and come away with actionable tactics you can consider and employ right away. That’s a stated goal of First Round, along with providing entertaining and engaging content that the experts themselves offer. This is a prime example of how strictly offering education and insight is both impactful and beneficial for everyone involved.

Time is Money

Here at FeedOtter, we are all about content marketing solutions, specifically, automating content digest emails so of course we need to include an example from our own experience!

Trimble had a problem. They are an international company that offers unique positioning products, innovative hardware and software , and complex informational solutions to massive companies on several continents. They had a tremendous amount of helpful content to push out to current and potential clients, and had counted on emails and newsletters to do so.

Problem was, all of this needed to be integrated and organized to be sent in a timely and efficient manner. Oh yeah, and in five different languages. Newsletters were taking all day to curate and compose, and they were trying to write unique code and design entire systems to do so. Yes, email campaigns work, but the effort spent in formatting and translating them was costing a lot of time and money.

Enter FeedOtter, a content management service that was able to provide Trimble with newsletter templates, integration with scheduled automated email services, and translation services right away. Within two years, Trimble’s website traffic from subscribers doubled, monthly conversions increased by 150%, and the creative team was able to focus more on the quality of the newsletters.

The takeaway? Hire the right experts to do what they excel at, and utilize your team to keep the quality up where it should be. If it works for a huge company like Trimble, it can work for you, too.

Do you have any examples of brands who rock at content marketing? We’d love to chat with you about it in the comments below!

 

 

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What New Research Tells Us About Content Marketing

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In the fast-paced and dynamic world of digital marketing, it’s hard to keep up with all the trends and changes. And, to get more specific, the ways successful marketers are using various forms of content to optimize their message are advancing at a fast and furious rate. To get the full benefit of any analysis of content marketing, it’s got to be current. Like, yesterday current. So, here’s a roundup of the latest research regarding how effective content marketing can be for you today.

Crunching Numbers

Nothing gives you more data to digest than a good old-fashioned research report. The Content Marketing Institute, one of the industry leaders, just released their massive 2018 research report, and there’s a lot of numbers to crunch. Let’s look at a few of the most telling numbers and what they mean for the future of content marketing.

“96% of the most successful content marketers agree that their organizations have built credibility and trust with their audience.” This speaks the very essence of why content is effective. It’s not quick or easy, but by providing educational and informative content to relevant audiences on a consistent basis, you establish yourself as a thought leader. This equals trust and confidence which can’t be bought or installed, yet trust and confidence are what every marketer dreams of getting from their audience.

“Nearly all of the most successful B2B content marketers (90%) prioritizes their audience’s informational needs over their sales/promotional message, compared to 56% of the least successful.” Following on the trust message from the first set of data, this is an important fact to keep in mind. Consumers and buyers are canny, and blatant outbound messaging that serves only to tout one’s own product is typically sniffed out and rejected. Stick with the content that helps and informs the reader.

And there is a crucial bit of data here, also: 81% of all respondents say that a well-documented content marketing strategy both “aligns team around common mission/goals” and “makes it easier to determine what types of content to develop”. This clearly shows that deliberate support from the top down can unify both your team and your strategies, and conscious documentation and analysis will always pay dividends.

What the Experts Are Saying

Next, we’ll jump into an interview done by MarTech with Randy Frisch of Uberflip, one of the world’s utmost expert on all things content marketing, and hear some of his theories on the future of the industry. There are a lot of eye-opening ideas and progressive thinking here, and we’ll highlight a few of them here:

Frisch puts emphasis on the content experience, rather than the marketing aspect, and highlights three core components of this experience.

  1. The environment in which we serve our content
  2. The structure in which we organize it
  3. The way we compel people to engage through elements like personalization

Frisch elaborates on this by reminding us that creating content is really just storytelling, and telling the right story to the right people is crucial: “Make sure the stories you tell speak to the items that people talk about when you’re not around.”  In other words, make sure the content can stand alone as an engaging and informative piece, and not necessarily as part of your brand.

He goes on to talk about how great content is discovered, emphasizing the importance of SEO-rich content and how voice-activated assistants will only give you the very top choice on any given search engine (which is an interesting topic on its own). But, as Frisch notes, “But once you’ve captured someone, then what? That’s the big question. Most of us are obsessed with the first click. But to me, true content discovery happens once you’re found.” In short, he’s saying that you have one chance to grab the reader once they get to your content, so it better be instantly engaging.

Finally, Frisch explains that the greatest future challenge is to personalize content for the target audience without invading their privacy. He explains, “After a year of marketers scrambling to become GDPR-compliant, there’s going to be an ongoing threat to our ability to personalize unless we find ways to show that we can be trusted to turn that data into a relevant experience.” He’s absolutely correct; privacy and having one’s personal data sold and exploited is a hot-button issue these days, so finding a balance between ever-evolving technology that can pinpoint the target consumer while respecting their privacy is essential.

And The Award Goes To…

We’ll wrap this up by recognizing a perennial marketing powerhouse. Marketing Dive issues awards to the top marketing movers and shakers every year, and the “Disruptor of the Year” award went to Burger King. Their quirky multi-pronged approach to connecting with elusive and savvy digital consumers is truly impressive. Through innovative apps that steer you towards the nearest Burger King (activated when you’re in close proximity to a McDonald’s), to tackling current issues like net neutrality with humorous and informative commercials, and fun interactive events like serving Whoppers with holes in them for National Donut Day, their marketing scheme utilizes the “hactervize” model and keeps their brand in conversations that are infinitely shareable. By keeping a sharp eye on sites like Reddit and Imgur, they were able to produce instantly relevant content and boost their sales far higher than the experts predicted. Staying current and nimble shows other content marketers how striking while the iron is hot is yet another way to stay ahead of the game.

What We Can Conclude

These are just a few examples of all the tasty bits of content marketing news out there. As this post shows, you can get different insights from case studies, interviews, and research reports…they all offer their own valuable lessons, so always read as many forms of marketing advice that you can find. Setting up Google Alerts for specific topics you need to stay on top of is an ideal way to get started, and discovering curated marketing websites and checking in on them often is another great way to stay updated and in-the-know. No matter how you choose to stay informed, you don’t want to miss anything important. You can bet the competition won’t.

Have you seen any good research on content marketing lately? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!