Content marketing is only possible if you understand your customers' needs. These insights are key to Content Marketing's biggest trend: We need to create content for every stage of the buyer journey.
This often means that there are significant gaps between the middle and early stages. A few companies don't have enough product content. However, almost all companies have gaps in the early stages.
Some content is not only for lead generation. More influence can be had on buyer decisions if content is relevant to all stages of the customer's life cycle. Marketing is about influencing buyer decisions.
This article will examine some B2B marketing data in order to identify the most important trends. It all comes down to the customer. Businesses that deliver customer value by mapping content to each stage are more likely to achieve better business results.
Moving towards a buyer-centric content strategy is the biggest trend in content marketing.
We must put customer insight ahead of internal demands to achieve this.
Next, brands must map content to each stage in the buyer journey and fill in the gaps.
This is the final step.
The State of B2B Content marketing
Let's take a look at the reasons that most B2B businesses use content marketing. It is easy to assume that B2B companies are all about content marketing. This is a popular tactic. Digital content marketing is highly popular. Nearly 88% of B2B companies use content marketing.
The main reason most companies use content marketing is because it works.
A recent survey of buyers revealed that my MarketingCharts:
- 68% said they chose a vendor because they understood their needs.
- 62% because they produce better-quality content
- 59% of them have knowledge of the industry
These terms are either about content marketing directly or the impact of content marketing.
However, many companies are not at an advanced level of content marketing. Consider:
- Only 26% feel that they are succeeding in their endeavors at B2B companies.
- Only 58% of the reports were even moderately successful.
- 16% of respondents say they are not very successful in their B2B content marketing campaigns.
These data points show that high adoption and effectiveness don't always have to be relative. Use doesn't equal success. It's more complicated than that. How do you get there? What does this mean for your customer journey?
The solution is Content marketers who are successful map their content to the buyer's journey.
We must start reframing our B2B content marketing strategy in a buyer-centric way.
Becoming Buyer-Centric: Why it Matters
It is easy to lose sight of the details of your content-marketing strategy. This is a common mistake made by many companies. This is the biggest lesson. You shouldn't be the star of your content strategy. Your buyers should be the star of your content strategy.
This is a crucial point that I cannot stress enough. Engaging buyers before they buy is not enough to make content. Content also helps to build loyalty, retention, as well as adoption. It's also valuable to communicate with them after they have bought.
You'll see that content covers the entire customer life cycle if you take a look at B2B marketers using it. It should be relevant to the customer's journey. It is of little value if it doesn't. This doesn't necessarily mean that the content is poor. It is just not relevant.
A survey of decision-makers revealed that there was a lot of concern about the relevance of the content they received. Nearly 35% said that it doesn't personalize to their stage. Another 41% stated it wasn't relevant for their company.
Relevance is not something you can't achieve. This could be due to a disconnect between your content marketing strategy, and the audience's needs. This is easily fixable.
Map More Content to All Buyer Journeys
Since years, we have advocated that B2B companies should reject the choice between quality or quantity of content. Your audience is increasingly searching for and consuming content. They need your help. The number of members in the buying committee is increasing. The new entrants to the market are not experts. The biggest gap is in basic, foundational and educational content.
In B2B Content Marketing, it is crucial to keep the publishing engine running. Your audience should find it compelling. This is possible by getting to know your audience. You must understand their needs, motives and demands before you can influence what they write.
This thought process will help you transform. Your strategy will become audience-centric.
How to Make Your Strategy Audience-Centric
There are many factors that can impact your content strategy. The customer must always be your priority. These steps will help you improve your strategy.
1. Search intent can be understood
When searching, define the buyer stage and "intent". Understanding the reason someone searched for something is called search intent. It is the question behind the query.
It could be transactional, informational, commercial, or task-oriented. Informational searches are for answers. Transactional refers to typing in a brand. Commercial is the use of buying language. Task-oriented refers to a specific action.
2. Analyze audience behavior
Data is important! Analyze how customers interact with content to personalize it. These insights will help you choose the most relevant topics. You will also learn about the formats they prefer.
3. Focus on the buyer
My belief has been that people are great, but they can be a pain in the rear. They are a waste of time if they don't help you with your content strategy. What are the questions your buyers want to know? Next, map your content to their stages of the purchase journey.
Get to know your personas. Get to know their world and what is important to them. Limit it as much as you can. It is okay to be niche. FreshBooks is one example. They offer small business accounting software. They can tell if a buyer has arrived at their site.
4. Listen for buyer signals
Pay attention to your customers' current problems. Marketing tools can help you do this. One option is social listening. Another option is to create Google alerts for keywords. Pay attention to industry news. This can be done by subscribing Reddit threads or industry group blogs.
5. Keep up with your competitors
You can learn a lot from competitor analysis. It's a lot. Take a look at what content is performing well for them. Look for opportunities to use the same topics, but do it better!
Here are some things to consider before you start mapping buyer journeys
Before you can map, you will need to do some preparation work. This should be done together with your audience-centric strategy. These exercises will help you plan the next steps.
- Collaboration across the company: All customers-facing roles should participate in the conversation. They can provide valuable information. Learn from them.
- Segmenting can be defined in many ways. There is no one "right" way. It all depends on your content marketing goals. It might help to be role-specific. Perhaps your audience is healthcare. That's broad. There are many segments. You can be more specific and have a stronger voice.
- Do your research. Interview customers and buyers to further your research. This gives you a 360-degree view on decision-makers.
- Discuss the key points. Get your team together to discuss audience engagement. This includes both marketing and non-marketing touchpoints. To understand interactions, you need to peel back layers. You can become more strategic when you do.
- Setting goals is key: Without objectives, customer journey mapping will not work. Describe the actions that you want buyers to take throughout their life cycle.
Building your Buyer Journey
Customer journeys are unique. This should be unique to your brand and your customers. This is not a generic exercise. You may have multiple buyer journeys in today's digital age. That's normal. You don't have to choose one.
We will start with a framework.
Framework for the B2B Buyer Journey
The buyer's perspective should be reflected in the customer journey. Important point! This framework will help you create content that is relevant to customer journeys. The four stages of the conversion funnel will be discussed. We'll also be looking at the post-conversion journey.
- The buyer recognizes the need.
- This stage has the most content.
- Create solutions and concepts.
- SEO is important because buyers search extensively.
Take into account
- Your funnel is shrinking as you lose potential buyers.
- Concentrate on solving the problems of your customers.
- Your offerings are more visible to buyers.
- Buyers compare options and decide which product they want to purchase.
- This bucket should contain persuasive content.
- All objections must be overcome by brands
- Here, peer recommendations are crucial.
- Buyers recognize the value of the solution, and weigh any risks.
- Comfort is an important factor in a purchase decision.
- Facilitate conversion by removing all friction and barriers (e.g. making checkout simpler).
Advocacy and retention
After conversion, your content efforts don't stop. A sale is not enough to make a customer loyal. They should also continue learning. Learning is not about just training. Keep learning. To do this, use thought leadership content.
The most important step in the post-conversion process is onboarding. You can streamline the process and communicate more. All your hard work and effort will go sour if onboarding fails. This can be achieved by working with onboarding teams.
To retain, upsell and engage customers, you must continue to support them. Don't forget your existing customers. It is much more costly to replace an existing customer than to attract one. Keep in touch with them. Continue to build a relationship.
Marketing Analytics Helps Customer Journey Tracking
Are you able to identify your audience's location in the life cycle? This is not an easy task. Marketing analytics can be a great help. After a buyer becomes a customer, you can learn more about them. All their interactions can be tracked. But what about when they convert? What can you do to monitor them?
How did you get the inbound lead? Different sources can mean different things. If a buyer completes a form for an awareness level ebook, they are information-gathering. A demo form completed by a buyer is a step further down the funnel.
Which content did they consume?
You can track their progress using cookies and scoring. These insights can be very valuable. These insights can be used to create content for customer journeys. Learn what makes customers act. You will also learn the formats they prefer.
How often do you engage?
Visitors who visit frequently could be more welcoming. They might be ready to sell. Track engagement across channels. This allows you to understand key touch points.
What are the most important indicators?
In your marketing analytics, look for signals. A signal is an action that causes funnel movement. A high volume of traffic to new content is an indicator that it's popular. Popular means relevant. Take a look at what happens when they finish reading it. Are they asking for pricing? Or request a demo? These are funnel movers.
What are your scoring leads?
You can score visitors on marketing platforms. Scoring will help you distinguish between a marketing inquiry and a lead. You can assign points to actions. After a certain point, the buyer can move from inquiry to lead. The sales team can then take control.
Alignment of Customer Journey and Content Strategy
Your content strategy is your marketing bible. It is designed to help you share content throughout the journey. Its goals and guidelines will guide you in building content. Therefore, content strategy and customer journey must align.
The most content is usually found in awareness. CMI estimates that nearly half of all efforts are directed towards early-stage content. This is a good thing. This content must be well-written to get attention.
Early-stage content (awareness)
Content in the early stages plays many roles. It builds credibility. This is where you present your case. This stage is not where you shout your own message. Instead, you are creating connections. Your content speaks to their needs.
It must also inspire action. It should also generate leads. It must be valuable. Buyers will share their information if it has value. Once you have their email address, you can start to communicate with them.
SEO is also important in the early stages of content. Buyers are searching for answers. These buyers are looking for answers. Optimize your content. Visibility is gained through high organic rankings.
Content for middle-stage (consideration, intention)
The party goes on at the middle stage. Buyers know. They know about you and your competitors. It should be more personal. This content should be unique.
Congratulations! Now, it's time for deeper connections. You should focus on the positive impact your product will have on a buyer's lives. Tell them what success looks like.
Consider case studies and explainer video. Here you should address particular decision-makers. These can change over time. It is time to nurture. You can do this with great content.
Conversion of late-stage content
Buyers are more inclined to purchase late-stage content. The buyer should be able to see the benefits of the purchase. A ROI calculator (return on investment), is one example. You can also empower your internal champion. This person is affirming yes. This person is willing to share their custom content with others.
Content after conversion
This content is focused on adoption and onboarding. These are the first topics. These topics are the first. This content can include tutorials, how-to guides and guides about the process.
Keep the relationship strong with useful content. Loyalty, advocacy, retention are all important. You can use topics such as new features, challenges, and upselling. This is also a chance to include your customer in your content. Ask them questions. Praise them for their efforts. Tell their story. Your customers should be part of the conversation to advocate for your cause.
Content for the Customer Journey: Use It With Content Experts
Are you ready to increase traffic to your website with high quality content that is consistently published? Our Content Builder Service is available. Get in touch with me for a quick consultation and I'll send you a PDF copy of one of my books.
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Frequently Asked Questions
How does marketing fit in with business strategy.
Marketing is an integral part of any business strategy. Without marketing, no one will know what your company has to offer. And without sales, marketing wouldn't matter. So marketing is essential to any business strategy.
Marketing is important, but not everyone gets it. Marketing is often thought to be about advertising campaigns. Marketing goes far beyond advertising campaigns. Marketing is everything you do to promote your company's brand and position in the market.
Think about how you want your customers to perceive you. How will my customers see me? How should I portray myself to the outside world?
If you don’t know the answers to these questions, you probably haven’t considered marketing.
What are 3 examples in internet marketing?
Internet Marketing is a term that encompasses online activities intended to promote products, services, and other related topics. Internet marketing covers email marketing as well social media marketing, search engine optimiz (SEO), PPC advertising (PPC), web design and other related activities.
This does not mean you need to spend money to make it happen. There are many ways to make income without spending money. However, the more you invest in each method, the better return you'll receive.
Email marketing is the most widely used form of internet advertising. This involves sending emails to potential customers informing them about your company and the latest offers.
Another popular way to market is via social media. Social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn enable users to share information and interact with friends and family. These sites offer businesses a great opportunity to interact with clients and increase awareness about their products or services.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a technique used to improve the visibility of websites within major search engines. Webmasters have the ability to increase traffic to their sites by improving the quality or quantity of relevant backlinks.
Website Design is the art of designing a website that looks attractive and functions well. Website designers design the website's layout. Website designers also ensure accessibility standards are met and that technical specifications are adhered to.
Advertising via Pay Per Click (PPC), where advertisers bid for keywords relevant to their products. Advertisers earn a commission when someone clicks their ad. PPC ads appear on search results pages at the top or bottom.
What type of eCommerce Marketing Strategy should I follow?
There are three main types eCommerce marketing:
- Direct marketing
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
- Social Media Marketing
Direct marketing means sending emails directly at potential buyers. These emails could contain coupons, discounts, special offers, etc. This marketing strategy aims to build customer loyalty.
Search engine optimization works by improving the ranking of your website in search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc. Your site will appear near the top results for keywords related to your product/service. This will increase your traffic.
Social media marketing includes websites like Twitter, Facebook Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, and Instagram. You can connect with your target audience. It's simple to set it up, free and very effective.
Each method has its own pros and cons. SEO, for example, requires time and effort while direct marketing is more efficient. It is possible to miss the entire benefit of eCommerce marketing if your focus is on one method. We encourage you to combine multiple marketing channels.
Sending emails could be one way to promote your products and help you rank well in search engines results. You could also advertise on social media, and then link back to your website from these pages.
As you can see, there are many ways to market your eCommerce store. Make sure you choose the right work for your business and stick with them. Good luck!
Social Media Marketing is a great way to promote your business online. It is a great tool to increase brand awareness, generate leads, and sell products. Here are five ways to use social media marketing to boost your business.
- Create a Facebook Fan Page – This allows you to interact directly with customers on Facebook. You can upload photos, videos and other files.
- Promote Your Business on Twitter – Twitter is another great place to share information and connect with people. You can increase your visibility with hashtags.
- Post Videos on YouTube. Many people enjoy watching these videos. If they like what you have to offer, they might click through to your site.
- Host Live Events. Organizing live events allows potential clients to meet face-toface. They will be able to ask questions about the products and services you offer.
- Respond to Customer Reviews. Positive reviews can build trust with clients and encourage repeat sales. React quickly to negative comments.
Are there any dangers associated with digital advertising?
Yes, digital marketing has its risks.
For starters, you must ensure you protect your online reputation by being careful about what you say on social networks.
You must also ensure that your content is original and doesn't infringe upon any other intellectual property rights.
You also risk losing control over your brand image if your online presence is not monitored closely.
You could also be vulnerable to identity theft if your personal details are used without your consent.
How to Protect Your Online Reputation
- Be careful about what you share on social networks
- Ensure that All Content Is Original, and Doesn't Infringe upon Any Other Intellectual Property Rights
- Monitor your Brand Image
- Strong passwords are important
- It is best to not divulge personal information without consent
- Notify us immediately of any unauthorized activity
- Don't Post Photos Of Yourself Or Others In A Disturbing Way
- Never give out your Social Security Number
- Keep up-to date with the latest news
- Avoid Scams
- Select a Secure Password
- Always Keep an Eye out for Updates
- Don't share too much information
- Pay attention when you give out credit card numbers
- Send money via EMail.
- Fake websites to avoid
- Remember that bad reviews can cause problems for your business
- Regularly check your credit reports
- Be vigilant about your privacy settings
- Ask someone who is familiar with you before sharing your thoughts.
- Today, 81% of brands around the world have affiliate programs. (influencermarketinghub.com)
- In 2017, 34% of marketers cited co-branding as the most effective way to increase the number of email subscribers. (influencermarketinghub.com)
- Many experts recommend you share 20% of your promotional content and 80% of other valuable content you find. (marketinginsidergroup.com)
- 81% of brands employ affiliate marketing, and eCommerce sites are particularly good candidates. (blog.hubspot.com)
- This allows us to deliver CPCs that are 80% less than average and CTRs 4-5 times higher than average. (marketinginsidergroup.com)
- SEO Learning Center – Moz
- [Case study] How we ranked #1 in a high-volume keyword in under 3 months – Moz
- TikTok quarterly first-time installs in 2021
- Statista – E-commerce around the World – Statistica – Facts & Statistics
Six Types Of Ecommerce Marketing
How can I market and sell my eCommerce store?
Ecommerce marketing represents one of most difficult marketing tasks. It requires that you understand your customers and their buying processes. You also need to understand how your products and service interact with them. This information will allow you to create an effective strategy to reach your goals.
There are six kinds of eCommerce marketing strategies.
- Product Strategy – The first thing you need to do is decide which product you want. There are three main categories: physical goods (things), digital goods (services), and membership sites. Once you have determined which category you want, you can decide whether or not to offer wholesale prices. Wholesale pricing means you set the price you sell your products, while retail pricing means you charge customers directly for your products.
- Pricing Strategy – Next, determine the amount you wish to make selling your products. Profit margins should be taken into consideration, as well as competition, shipping costs and taxes. You can increase your profits by lowering your cost per sale or increasing your sales volume when you are deciding on your pricing strategy.
- Promotion Strategy – Now comes the fun part! Your business needs a promotion plan that is most effective. Promo strategies that work best for your business include free shipping, special deals, discounts, coupons, and other offers. If you don’t have any ideas for promotional products, brainstorm some.
- Shipping Strategy – After you have determined how to promote your products you must now think about how you will get them in front of people. Are you shipping via USPS, FedEx or UPS? Are you going to use a fulfillment center or will you do it all yourself?
- Merchandise Management System – Your merchandise management system includes software that helps you manage inventory, track orders, fulfill orders, and communicate with suppliers. You have the option to choose from many systems, depending on your preferences and budget.
- Customer Service Strategy: Finally, it is important to create a customer-friendly strategy for your company. Are you going to provide phone support or email support? Are you able to provide support via email or live chat?
By: Michael Brenner
Title: How to Create and Align Your Content with the Buyer Journey
Sourced From: marketinginsidergroup.com/content-marketing/create-align-content-buyer-journey/
Published Date: Wed, 22 Feb 2023 15:05:34 +0000