5 Tips for Generating B2B Leads from Content
Unlike B2C businesses, most B2B products have a longer sales cycle prior to a buying decision. Generating quality leads is the most important task of B2B marketing teams. Gone are the days when B2B lead generation was about having a sales team and cold calling prospects in order to get them interested. Today, marketers are using content marketing to attract users that can be turned into prospect leads. In this article you will find guidelines about:
- B2B blogs: This section will tell you what kind of blogposts must be written and how to make the content more compelling and interesting for the user
- Content resource as lead magnet: Using your existing content to attract leads
- Industry specific conversations: Promoting your content on various channels to attract users
- Lead nurturing via content: Using content to push the lead further in the funnel via automation
- Case studies: Using case studies as stories rather than promotional content to gain user’s trust
B2B Blogs ( Educational in nature)
Your blog can bring in quality traffic to your website and can turn that traffic into leads. For this you need to keep few points in mind. Self promotional content can never get you the desired result, here is what you should be doing instead:
- Write industry specific. Educational content such as how-to guides with relevant examples.(Like we have done in the blog post.)
- Never ignore your blog’s comment section. If people are interested in your content, respond to their queries and keep them moving further in the funnel.
- Include relevant CTAs in your posts. Once someone landed on your website and you hooked them with your content, it’s time to offer them something that’s even more useful and keeps them interested for more (an ebook or a downloadable resource maybe?)
For example, WP Curve is a company that provides 24/7 support for businesses running WordPress websites. Instead of writing about tech issues related to websites, they write content that is helpful and attracts their customers. In this case, their target audience is startup owners who have WordPress blogs and need assistance. Check out this amazing article on their website that talks about networking secrets of influencer. This type of content would interest small business owners.
Also refer to the cleverly placed lead magnet offering Free Download.
Content Resource as Lead Magnets
The above example was about using your own content as a lead magnet in the blogpost to keep the reader interested. Another reason to do this is to get them into your funnel. What if someone came on your blog, read the content and left? We don’t want that. We want them to know more about our company and in order to do this, we need to get the users in our funnel. For this you need two things:
- Amazing content that everyone wants to read about
- Relevant content that can be used as a downloadable resource within your existing piece of content
By amazing content I mean relevant content. Let’s say a user landed on your company blog on the post named “Content Marketing 101” and on this page he finds a CTA to download an eBook about Adwords campaign optimization. Clearly this person is interested in Content marketing and not paid marketing so an eBook about Content marketing tips and tricks would have been a more useful resource.
Here is an example of HubSpot, a company that provides inbound marketing tools for businesses. On their post How to Get More Followers on Instagram: A Guide to Earning Your First 1,000 Followers they have put up a downloadable resource at the end. So when the user has gone through their post, they are providing more content in order to keep user interested. Also, the resource is very much in sync with what they are providing in the post: How to use social media at every stage of funnel.
Industry Specific Questions and Conversations ( Quora and LinkedIn groups)
Until now we were talking about how to engage customers when they reach on your blog. But what if they don’t? You have great blog posts but not a lot of traffic coming to read it.
Well, you can always go on other channels and promote your blog to attract relevant traffic.
Some of these right channels for B2B businesses might be LinkedIn and Quora as compared to other social channels.
You can join relevant groups on LinkedIn and get into relevant conversations while promoting your blog. For Quora, find questions that people are most interested in, related to your industry and answer it in a helpful manner.
One important thing to keep in mind is you have to be helpful rather than spammy. Your answers and comments should actually solve the problem rather than just being self promotional.
Here I would like to take the example of our own company App Radar, an App Store Optimization tool. We have been doing a lot of content marketing on Quora solving real ASO problems while doing some promotion. Take a look at this answer.
Lead Nurturing via Content
In the beginning, I mentioned that content can be used for lead nurturing as well. For this, you need to identify your User’s journey. Let’s take an example to understand better.
Assume we have a SaaS company where the product is a data visualization tool. Now here is an example of one of the User journey possibility.
Visit company blog >> Convert on ebook call-to-action >> Receives industry specific blog content >> Clicks on CTA >> Receive free trial email >> Download free trial >> Become a customer
On this assumption we create an email automation. In this automation everyone who downloads the ebook gets added automatically. They receive industry specific blogs. If they show interest by reading more, they receive another email for free trial. If they don’t show interest, more posts are sent to keep them in the loop. Here is an example of the same.
Case Studies as Stories within Content
Case studies are often considered long, boring advertisements consisting of facts, figures and promotional content. But done right, a case study tells a powerful story about how that brand’s client innovated to overcome industry challenges.
Research from the Content Marketing Institute shows that 77 percent of B2B companies use case studies to engage with prospects.
The question is how to make case studies more of a success story than plain advertisement in order to engage with customers. For this you need to write case studies from your customers’ point of view with less statistics and more problem solving. Better include case study as a story in one of your blog posts.
For example, this case study from GE Health begins with the story of Dr. M. Narendra Kini, when he was appointed CEO of Miami Children’s Hospital. It outlines the objectives that were set for him when the board hired him, the challenges he identified once on the job and his thought process to overcome the challenges.
By following these tips, any B2B business owner can generate qualified leads only through website traffic without spending big budgets on advertising. There are dozens of elements to consider while doing B2B content marketing. Hopefully you’ve identified several key factors to make your content better.
Implement these practices in your B2B content marketing strategy and you will see measurable improvement in no time.