The Power of Content in B2B Inbound Marketing

Posted by Dom Moriarty on 12/05/23 15:30
Dom Moriarty

In today's digital age, content marketing has become an essential part of any successful B2B marketing strategy. By providing valuable, informative content to your target audience, you can establish your business as a thought leader and work towards building long-lasting relationships with your customers.

In a study by HubSpot, 54% of B2B decision makers said they spend more than an hour a week reading and reviewing thought-leadership content. Isn’t it therefore good business acumen to leverage your content marketing efforts to attract and engage these decision makers with the right content and build authority on your subject to attract and engage more? Absolutely.

But how can you ensure you are harnessing the power of content marketing to establish your company as the best in its field? We think the first thing to grasp is that content marketing for B2B (business-to-business) is a little different.

B2B content marketing is different from mainstream content marketing

What works for mainstream marketing, doesn’t necessarily work for B2B marketing. B2B clients tend to have a longer customer lifecycle and their products are more complex and often technical, also, the target audience may be smaller. Alongside that, the decision-making process is typically longer, and involves more decision makers.

Understanding this gives you a unique opportunity to build and establish trust with your clients over a longer period and be ready when they reach the decision stage. To do this effectively, you must know your business and customers.

Defining your goals using Buyer Personas

Defining your buyer personas is crucial for effective marketing and sales strategies. A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer, based on research and data about your current and potential customers.

By understanding your buyer personas, you can tailor your messaging, content, and overall marketing strategy to address their specific needs, pain points, and motivations. This allows you to create more relevant and compelling campaigns that resonate with your target audience, increasing the likelihood of attracting and converting leads into loyal customers.

Additionally, by knowing your buyer personas, you can make better decisions about where to allocate your marketing resources, such as which channels to use and which tactics to employ. Ultimately, defining your buyer personas helps you build stronger relationships with your customers and drives business growth.

From there, align your content to the relevant attract, engage, and delight principles of their buyer journey.

To align your content to your buyer personas:

  • Create content that addresses the needs, pain points, and interests of each persona, using language and messaging that resonates with their specific challenges and goals.
  • Tailor the format and delivery of content to each persona's preferences and behaviour, such as using social media for younger audiences or long-form blog posts for professionals.
  • Identify the most effective channels for reaching each persona and tailoring content promotion accordingly, such as using Instagram for one persona and LinkedIn for another. (This could be the difference in hiring a customer service representative compared to a CFO.

Building a dynamic content strategy

Once you’ve completed the mission of discovering what content aligns best with your buyer personas, it’s time to build your strategy. It could include a variety of content types, such as email campaigns, videos, whitepapers, and eBooks tying into your buyer personas and buyer’s journey. Then you need to make sure your content is found by the right audience.

At Angelfish, we use the Topic Cluster method to ensure our content supports our core keywords, and assists in SEO (Search Engine Optimization). SEO should be a huge part of your content marketing efforts, and better, focused, problem-solving content will mean higher search page rankings.

Make sure content is focused on building authority and trust to help you achieve specific goals. For example:

  • Email campaigns can help you nurture leads and keep your business top-of-mind for your target audience.
  • Whitepapers, eBooks and blogs can establish your business as a thought leader and provide in-depth information on industry topics.
  • Use landing pages, forms, and CTAs to nurture your client through the lifecycle stages.
  • Video and audio content like Podcasts, can be a highly engaging way to educate your audience and highlight your products or services. (91% of marketers say video has increased traffic).

Analysing data

Once you have your content marketing strategy in place and have started sharing content, it’s critical to analyse your data. Use analytics tools like HubSpot to gain valuable insights into the performance of your content. A CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool like HubSpot allows you to integrate your adverts and monitor contacts who interact with your site across paid ads, landing pages, form submissions and blogs. The platform also allows you to create tracking URLs to further accurately monitor your content.

You can then make data-driven decisions on what content to create in the future and how to optimise your existing content. Be aware of potential pitfalls such as focusing on vanity metrics like likes and shares. Instead:

  • Focus on metrics that give a more accurate picture of how your content is performing, such as click-through rates, conversion rates, lead generation, and revenue generated.
  • Consider the context in which the data is collected, including the target audience and industry, to ensure that the data is meaningful and relevant.
  • Regularly review and update your content marketing strategy based on your data analysis to ensure that it continues to align with your goals and delivers the desired results.

Marketing tools for content marketing

There are a variety of marketing tools that can help you streamline your content marketing efforts and achieve your goals. Some popular options include:

  • HubSpot: HubSpot is an all-in-one marketing platform that includes tools for email marketing, social media, lead management, and more.
  • SEMrush: SEMrush is a comprehensive SEO tool that can help you with keyword research, competitor analysis, and more.
  • Canva: Canva is a graphic design tool that makes it easy to create professional-looking images and video for your content.
  • AI: Using Artificial Intelligence is going to become the norm but focus on producing quality B2B content and always proofread and fact check your efforts.

Knowledge is power

Content marketing is an essential element in any B2B digital marketing campaign. However, it's crucial to realise that crafting a B2B content strategy requires a slightly distinct approach.

Understanding this can give you an edge in adapting mainstream methods to suit your strategy. And by setting clear goals, creating a content strategy that is tailored to your buyer personas, the buyers' journey and using topic clusters, you can make an impact and enjoy a higher ROI.

With the added potential to increase brand awareness, improve your website's search engine ranking, and convert customers, high-quality, informative, and engaging content, it’s the key to success.

Take advantage of our free better blogging guide. or speak to us about a free marketing report and consultation.

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Topics: Content Marketing

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