Developing A Content Strategy to Drive Sales and Leads
Content is crucial. So how do you know that you’re pursuing the best strategy to drive sales? At Slava Communication we make it our business to develop the strategy that fits your business growth ambitions, connects with customers and drives leads, but if you prefer to go it alone, we’ve packaged together some essential tips to get you started.
Why is Content Strategy Essential?
Content marketing is another avenue that allows you to communicate with your target audience. It complements and integrates with traditional marketing and PR strategies. The importance of content marketing lies in its capabilities of building trust in your brand and raising your profile. When your content is authentic and informative it serves to drive people to your website and increase sales and leads.
How do I get started?
When you establish your content strategy, you need to identify your primary focal-points. These include:
- Your target audience
- What pain-point solutions you offer
- Formats (video, static images, written)
- What sets you apart from the competition
- The platforms you will use
- What metrics you will use to gauge its success.
Once you have clearly defined your objectives, you can then expand further on your content marketing strategy.
Who are you speaking to?
The first step in establishing a successful B2B digital marketing strategy is to pinpoint your target audience. You not only need to know who your customers are but also the buyer’s journey in order to maximise the conversion prospects of your content marketing. According to a Forrester survey, 74% of business buyers stated that they carried out their research online before making an offline purchasing decision. Therefore, spending time investigating your client profile and their online behaviour, as well as data from existing customers, will all assist you in establishing an accurate customer avatar for your brand.
Define your objectives
When you define your content marketing goals, you provide your content with purpose and focus. Your goals may include:
- Improving your search engine ranking and attracting organic traffic.
- Raising brand awareness
- Building your business profile
- Fostering an online community and activity
You can then assess your performance with metrics including how many leads have been generated, the flow of organic traffic and social media engagement and awareness.
Do Your Research
Keyword research is key to understanding what your client base is looking for and generating topics that can be used in content marketing to draw them in. Once you know the questions that your audience is asking, you can offer the solutions that will generate new leads and conversions.
Keywords are also an essential piece of the puzzle when it comes to raising your company profile, as the more relevant your content is to their topics of interest, the more they’ll start to see you around in the digital world, enabling you to establish awareness.
Set a Budget
When planning your content strategy, you need to establish what part of your budget you will set aside for its creation. Factors to consider include what kind of content you will be creating (a video will cost more than written content) and the platforms you will be using to promote it.
You also need to decide whether you will employ the services of a specialist agency, or create and execute the content strategy in-house. While in-house might appear to be a more economical option at first glance, you should take into account the time needed and whether you have the specialist skills required within your team to produce content that has an optimal ROI.
Create Your Content
Once you have everything in place, it’s time to move on to setting your content marketing plan into action. Bear in mind that with the ever-increasing online content available to audiences, yours needs to stand out from the crowd in order for your potential customer to take notice. So, your content needs to engage, entertain, inform or even create discussion, depending on your sector.
However, in striving to be noticed, make sure that you never lose sight of your focus—the customer. Your content needs to remain relevant in order to generate leads and sales. You need to demonstrate that you are offering solutions or establish your expertise to build trust in your brand.
And when you create your content you need to have clearly thought out the formats that you will be using. From your research, you should already have a good idea of how your potential client consumes content, whether that be through videos, blogs, articles or reports.
Get Your Content Out There
You might have produced content that stands head and shoulders above your competition, but if it doesn’t get noticed then you won’t see any results. So, you need to ensure that you are using the right platforms and channels for your target audience to find you. Do your clients use social networks, carry out research on the web or are they more easily reached through an email marketing campaign? In terms of social media channels, LinkedIn and Twitter are considered the gold standard when it comes to online platforms for distributing B2B content. However, it is worth noting that the new kid on the block, TikTok, conventionally viewed as a Gen Z platform, has eclipsed Google in 2021 to become the most popular website across the world. While it might not seem an obvious choice for B2B marketing, it is worth taking into account its rising popularity and considering that your B2B clients also access digital platforms in their leisure time when it comes to building awareness around your brand.
Analyse Your Strategy’s Success
You should constantly be analysing the results of your content marketing as you go along in a proactive manner, making the necessary tweaks to polish your strategy rather than suddenly changing course after a certain period of time. The top evaluation metrics include:
Site traffic is one of the first key metrics for analysing the success of your strategy. When looking at your web stats, make sure you dig deeper to find out where your traffic is coming from. Are they being referred from social media, finding you organically or clicking on links in email newsletters? Google analytics is a great starting point for evaluating web traffic.
Once you know how many people are finding you and how, you then need to see how your content performs. Google Analytics tools include bounce rates, time spent on pages, statistics on new or returning visitors that can all serve to evaluate whether your content marketing is relevant to your target audience.
You need to review and, if necessary, revise your keywords on a regular basis. You can use Google Search Console or targeted tools such as SEMrush to analyse the performance of your keywords and their effect on your website positioning.
Particularly for B2B, measuring your return on investment is a long-term analysis of your content marketing performance. Consider the average length of the purchasing journey within your industry to know when you can start to measure whether your initial investment is paying dividends.
Closely linked to ROI, if you are able to establish a firm link between your content marketing activity and an increase in revenue, then you know that your strategy is working for your product or service. Based on the other metrics, you can then refine or polish that strategy according to your business growth objectives.
In this article, we’ve covered the basics of implementing a robust content marketing strategy for B2B. If you are looking for specialist help to plan and execute a content marketing plan that drives sales and generates new leads then you can chat with one of our experts at Slava Communication to find out how we can help your business to achieve its goals.