Does B2B Mean Boring 2 Boring?

B2B , business to business marketing, business word on wooden cubes over blur background, banner, with copy space for text

Of course, B2B doesn’t mean Boring to Boring, but the way some people market B2B you’d think it does mean that.   Today’s marketer faces challenges that are growing as fast as content on the internet, and that’s nanosecond fast.

According to a Content Marketing Institute study, 91% of B2B businesses understand how important content marketing on the internet is for their bottom line, but only 20% describe their content marketing practice as “very successful” and only 4% claim that their content marketing is “extremely successful?”

That 24% of respondents attributed their success to content creation that is of higher quality and that is produced with more efficiency, better content strategy, and better targeting of prospects and what content those prospects want. 

Half of the companies in the study that are engaged in content marketing report that their content marketing does not result in better engagement with their company and more revenue.  Why is that?

First, let’s look at some common problems that keep our content from getting the engagement levels that are commensurate with the time that we put into our content creation.

7 Common Problems

  1. Boring Content. Let’s start with the most common problem – content that isn’t interesting. Boring doesn’t move the needle. The internet competition for eyeballs is intense, and without sufficient engagement your content will be buried on the back pages of search engines.
  2. Audience Targeting. An audience isn’t sufficiently targeted is not going to be sufficiently engaged. Selling cat food to dog owners isn’t a winning formula. Target your audience and write for your target.
  3. Clarity. Are you absolutely clear on what you’re marketing and how it will benefit your target audience? If not, how well do you think you’ll be able to communicate what you’re offering? Gain clarity on the purpose of your content marketing, what you have to offer, and why your target audience will benefit from what you have to offer.
  4. Creative Approach. Choose a way for your content this is not humdrum, me-too, like everyone else’s content. Humor, shock, or awe your audience with heavy doses of clarity.
  5. Burnout. This is a ginormous problem for solopreneurs. You manage your website and email list. Both require new content regularly. You either market products as an affiliate or you create products. Either way, there is a regular pull to get new products to market – either your own or someone else’s. Did someone tell you that running a successful internet business is easy?
  6. Unrealistic Expections. This contributes to burnout. Did someone promise you a six-figure business in one year or less? There are some folks who do that, but it doesn’t happen regularly.
  7. Improvement. Is your content getting better over time? There’s nothing wrong with going back and improving the content you’ve already produced. In fact, Google will reward you for doing so. Improving your content is one way to get higher rankings.

UX, CX, and Xcellence

Improving the user experience on your website, in your emails, and in any other way that you communicate is one way to move from boring to engaging. When you understand what your users want and you deliver it to them in a creative way, you will build loyalty among your users.

When you improve your customer experience, from check-out to support, you will build loyalty among your customers that can lead to repeat customers.

When you provide excellence in every aspect of your business, you will grow a loyal following out of which will come your loyal customers.

It all starts with your content. Do you have a content marketing strategy? Do you know the essential elements of an effective content marketing strategy? A successful content marketing strategy can guide you away from boring and build audience engagement.

5 Steps to an Effective Content Marketing Strategy

  1. Define your ideal customer and write engaging content for this person.
  2. In an article in Entrepreneur, seven-figure marketer Scott Oldham talks about understanding your audience’s awareness level. He gives three levels:
  • Sidewalk: unaware they have a pain or a problem
  • Slow Lane: aware they have a problem, but unsure what the process is
  • Fast Lane: aware of the process, but unsure of the solution

As you think about your content marketing strategy, consider having three people in mind, one in each of the categories that Scott names.

Your awareness of your audience’s awareness levelThis is a very helpful guide for your content creation, and it will get you even deeper into understanding your ideal customer. As Scott says,

“In the slow lane, you focus on your process or methodology, educating your audience to what comes next — the fast lane, where you dive into the solution and how they can fix their problem.”

3. As you consider what you will write, also consider what emotion you’d like to evoke with your content. This is also from Oldham:

  • Do you want to illuminate a pain?
  • Would you like to help them understand themselves better?
  • Are you trying to debunk a certain philosophy and introduce an alternative idea?

Emotion sells and will help you stay away from boring content, so make sure that you use it in your copy creation strategy. Emotion is the connection point between you and your audience.

4. Make at least half of your content evergreen. This is the content that you can promote FOREVER.

5. As you put your content marketing strategy together, think about where your prospects and customers are in the buying cycle. It’s important for your business success that you understand where your audience is with you. Engage and connect with them, where they are in the buying cycle with your business.

Click here for a fantastic (and free) infographic on content marketing at every place along the buying cycle.

What thoughts do you have about making B2B content marketing highly interesting, engaging, and profitable for your business?

I welcome your comments and questions, and your likes and shares!

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