Since those days when newsletters were sent by mail, companies have used content marketing to generate leads and as a technique to interact with their customers.
The digital world makes content marketing easier, but not easy, according to a new eMarketer report titled “B2B Content Marketing: Best Practices for 2013”. In that report, eMarketer defines content marketing as the use of content that is not, at least primarily, promotional content, but which is interesting or valuable in and of itself. B2B companies should also add a fundamental phrase: it is content aimed at helping professionals to do their jobs better.
In August 2012, a survey conducted by the ContentMarketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProfs, sponsored by the online video platform Brightcove, found that 9 out of 10 B2B companies in North America used content marketing. CMI is a consulting firm that assists companies throughout the content marketing process.
CMI and MarketingProfs found in their survey that most responses had planned to increase spending on content marketing in the last two years. 54% of B2B companies in North America so planned in 2012, and 60% the same in 2011.
The same study found that, on average, B2B companies had planned to spend 33% of their marketing budgets on content marketing in 2013, 7 points above 26% in 2012. Ideally, B2B companies can use Content marketing effectively during the customer’s life cycle, which serves not only to attract the customer’s attention but also to interact with it.
Another study, in this case of software provider Curata, found that engagement was the goal of content marketing most frequently cited among US B2B companies, over 80%, and far from others Such as increased sales (47%), educating the market (47%), creating opinion (56%), increasing traffic on the web (27%) or SEO (24%).
As companies devote more time and energy to content creation and distribution, there are some good practices that B2B brands can use on their digital channels.
B2B companies that care about keeping the conversation with their customers vibrant and fluid can customize the content for certain segments. The more personalized the content, the more useful and necessary the content, and therefore the brand, for the customer.
Mobility also offers new opportunities for B2B content marketing. Companies can build bridges between offline marketing and mobility by creating mobile applications that lead potential customers to certain events in the relevant industry, for example.