The Definitive Guide to Engaging Content Marketing
How engaging content marketing benefits you
The modern B2B buyer is self-directed more than ever before, so much so that as much as 90% of a customer’s sales journey can happen before brands realize it. Content marketing makes it possible to connect with potential buyers much earlier in their sales journey and stay engaged throughout.
Combine that with the fact that your customers live in an age of information abundance. They’re more inundated by marketing messages than ever—more than 2,900 per day, by current estimations. So, in order to effectively engage your customers, you’ll need to develop a consistent narrative with your content, ensuring each piece has a determined purpose and system of measurement.
An engaging content marketing strategy can help you accelerate your brand awareness efforts at a much lower cost than traditional advertising. A well-crafted content marketing strategy places your business in the position of a thought leader, building brand preference as you inform and educate buyers. Producing helpful and entertaining content can form a strong bond between your brand and customers that continues to grow and strengthen over time.
What’s in the guide?
- What is engaging content marketing?
Unlike traditional marketing, content marketing allows brands to act as publishers, generating attention and building audiences by offering educational content that consumers seek out on their own. Done right, content marketing elevates your brand above thousands of marketing messages and becomes the fuel for engagement with your customers.
- Buyer personas and journeys
Buyer personas define your audience—their challenges, questions, needs, and the kind of content they like to consume—while their buying stages tell you what each piece of content should accomplish. Master how to use buyer personas to define your audience by considering the challenges, questions, and needs they have as well as their content preferences.
- Brand voice
Cross-channel consistency is key. Access our checklist to help you develop your brand voice and break down attributes for each persona, including character, tone, language, and purpose. Use these insights to help align your writers, editors, and other internal stakeholders.
- Content brainstorming
Stay content-minded and be prepared for inspiration to strike at any time. Review tips, tricks, and advice from our experts about how to make sure you’ll always be on the hunt for the subject of your next piece of content.
- Types of content
We’ll break down each type of content and where each is most effective, including ebooks, cheat sheets, worksheets and templates, white papers and reports, infographics, slide decks, video, blog posts, and case studies. Taking into consideration your industry, budget, audience, and more, you’ll discover what forms of content are best for your marketing mix.
- Content food groups and editorial calendars
Review how to create a balanced content food pyramid to ensure your content marketing strategy is well-rounded and effective. Paired with your editorial calendar, these vital tools help keep your team on the same page to strategize and execute integrated programs. Explore the basics of creating and managing a robust editorial calendar and how to use it to organize and release content.
- Build your team
Before you dive in, you need to determine who will project manage, create, curate, and distribute your content to the rest of your marketing department. We’ve outlined characteristics for chief content officers, managing editors, designers, SMEs, and thought leaders to help you get started. Find out what the ideal content marketing team looks like and determine how to build your own.
- Outline and edit your content
In this section, you will learn about different types of editing and how to form a team to create and edit high-quality content and run with an effective strategy to make the most of every single asset you publish.
Depending on your asset, “design” might mean anything from converting your Word document into a simple PDF, to treating your content to a custom cover—graphics, design elements, and illustrations. No matter the form factor, start with your audience in mind before you publish and promote.
- Content repositories
Once you’re ready to publish your content, where do you put it? Most companies keep their content on their website, where it can be easily accessed and downloaded. But as you create more and more ebooks, guides, webinars, slide decks, infographics, and analyst reports, you’ll need to ensure your content is organized and accessible.
Many marketers struggle to prove the return on investment (ROI) for their content. Start solving the ROI mystery at the gate and ensure you have your first-touch and multi-touch attribution metrics in place.
Keep in mind, content marketing is not a short-term marketing strategy, so while it can take time to see results, it is an investment that can pay dividends in the long run.