The resounding success of content marketing has inspired many businesses to invest in content, aiming for maximum success. However, it has also given rise to some myths with regards to the effectiveness of content marketing.
Indeed, as with any marketing campaigns, content marketing also requires sound planning and proper execution to achieve the desired results.
The ultimate objective of every content marketing campaign is to maximize conversions which leads to a boost in sales. However, in a typical B2B content marketing funnel, there are many small milestones that precede the final sale.
Prior to reaching the ultimate objective, i.e, sales, you should see to it that your content is effective. By effective, it is useful to see if your content is nurturing your leads to reach those small milestones.
Therefore, your B2B content strategy requires a systematic approach to building assets which focus on each milestone.
Types of Conversion Goals in B2B Content Marketing
While the ultimate conversion goal of every B2B enterprise is sales and customer acquisition, the content strategy would typically consist of smaller milestones (conversion goals) depending on the nature of their business.
Let’s take a look at the different types of conversion goals in B2B content marketing.
E-commerce Campaign: In an e-commerce content marketing funnel, subscriptions, product reviews, ratings, and social shares are some of the smaller milestones content marketers aim to hit prior to reaching the bigger milestones, i.e, sales.
Lead Generation Campaign: In a lead generation campaign, content marketers aim for smaller goals such as form submissions, clickthrough, and social shares as a part of the lead nurturing process.
Blogging: A B2B enterprise aiming to build their brand authority through blogging will look at getting more page views, comments, newsletter subscriptions and shares.
Media Company: If you’re in media or digital publishing, you would ideally break down your goals into getting more subscriptions, click through rates, comments and shares.
Regardless of the nature of your business, each of these smaller milestones is a path your prospects will cross before they convert.
Therefore, while planning your content strategies, you need to consider the specific conversion goal in order to optimize your content for the specific milestone.
On the contrary, having a generic approach to creating content will render your campaign ineffective, leading to wasted marketing efforts.
Tips to Optimize Your Content Strategies for Better Goal Conversion
Understanding your audience and their journey along a funnel is critical to get a better success at goal conversion. Since B2B buyers tend to be more circumspect in their buying decisions, you need to focus on creating content that best addresses their concerns at each milestone. This will help you hit your specific milestones while helping your prospects move closer to the ultimate goal.
Here are some tips on how to optimize your content strategies for better goal conversion.
Know Your Audience
A greater understanding of your audience and their pain points is the starting point of any content marketing campaign. However, this is even more important in B2B content marketing since B2b consumers tend to move along the sales funnel slowly and cautiously.
Apart from a broad overview of your prospects such as their names, professional titles and companies they work for, you need to dig deeper to ascertain their challenges, pressing needs and decision-making patterns.
Moreover, you can pull customer data from your CRM system, analyze it and segregate prospects based on their engagement patterns. This will help you categorize prospects into different groups and determine their current position in a sales funnel.
The better you are at making identifying your prospects and their location in a sales funnel, the stronger is your content.
Choose Topics Tied to Your Conversion Goals
The content you develop should be closely tied to your immediate conversion goals.
However, more often than not, B2B content marketers tend to ignore this critical aspect and create content relevant to their immediate milestones. This can be counterproductive for your brand and lead to marketing failures.
Make sure your content is designed to answer queries, assuage concerns and offer solutions owing to the exact milestone you want to hit.
For example, when a prospect is ready to sign up for a free trial, there’s no point in sending him content about the benefits of your products. Most likely, he’s already convinced and needs more information about the features/benefits of the free trial. At this point, sharing benefits of your trial offer will encourage him to take the next step.
While building content for a specific milestone, always keep the prospect in mind and help them move along the step easily.
Focus on Delivering Value
Just because you know your audience well enough doesn’t automatically mean your content will work. In order for your content to move your prospects to the next milestone, you need to offer value.
The value proposition in content varies from milestone to milestone, depending on the position of the buyer in the sales funnel. For example, when a prospect is at an early stage of the sales funnel, you need to create in-depth and research-oriented content to inspire trust and establish your credibility.
Likewise, an already informed prospect would need you to demonstrate your competitive advantage, which can influence their decision-making process.
Recommend Reading: How to Make Your Blog Deliver Real Value to Your Readers
Measure Your Milestone Performance
Content marketing is subjective in that there’s no guarantee that a certain method or approach will work effectively every time. In other words, whether a content strategy works depends largely on the industry, products and even technology.
With the constantly evolving B2B marketing industry, you need to measure the performance of each content strategy and evaluate the milestone to see why a certain content strategy works or fails.
For example, if you offer a PDF for download at the end of your blog post, it’s important to measure how many of your readers downloaded it or how a specific call-to-action worked over another.
With deeper analysis of your milestone performance, you will get more insights to leverage your future content strategies.
Recommended Reading: 6 Types of Content to Convert Prospects Into Customers
Conversion goal optimization is all about mapping out the sales funnel and building highly targeted content for each prospect segment, keeping the exact milestone in mind. By optimizing the path your visitors take to reach a specific milestone, you’re more likely to offer them a positive experience, helping them convert faster.
About the Author
Susanta Sahoo is founder and chief content marketing strategist at Top League Technologies, a digital marketing start-up in Bhubaneswar, India. By offering SEO consulting services, he helps SMB’s build their online presence and boost ROI. Follow him on Twitter: .