Content is playing an increasingly critical role in B2B marketing. Companies today offer an information-rich assortment of written posts, videos, infographics, podcasts, case studies, and more. That’s simply the expectation of today’s B2B customer, who learns about brands and their ideas through quality content rather than advertising.
Companies that recognize and act on that expectation can take the lead, but only if they do so strategically. Where many B2B companies miss the mark is by taking a content-first approach rather than a customer-first one. Successful B2C companies maintain a laser-sharp focus on their customers and the stages of their path to purchase, and B2B companies must do the same. To be fair, the B2B customer is far more complex—starting with the fact that there isn’t just one of them. Multiple stakeholders exist throughout the organization, each with different needs, challenges, and success benchmarks. The stages of the B2B path to purchase are also longer, and each one is usually dotted with more buyer-seller interactions.
Creating a successful B2B content marketing strategy, then, begins with the customer. A customer-centric content strategy involves mapping content to the stages of the customer’s journey, speaking to the relevant stakeholders within each stage, and using the right content formats and channels to communicate. Below is a high-level overview designed to introduce this way of thinking into your content strategy.
Your customer-first content strategy doesn’t end there—you also must consider retention. Once you’ve begun working with a client, you owe them consistency, quality, and purpose in your communication. By maintaining the conversation both in your partnership and through content, you’ll continue to demonstrate your expertise and share the messages that matter to them.
For more on B2B content marketing, check out my colleagues’ previous posts: