October 08, 2014

Content Marketers: Where's the Value?

The Content Marketing Institute’s (CMI) annual survey entitled, “B2B Content Marketing: 2015 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America” was full of useful information and interesting facts. One of the most noticeable items included in the report was an updated definition of content marketing:

“Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and ultimately drive profitable customer action.”

The word “valuable” is the key, not only to this new definition but to the entire future of content creation. As marketers, it’s easy to get lost in the weeds trying to be overly clever or reaching to try to tie current events to our content. But every marketer knows, deep down, that creating value in your content is what draws customers in. How do you do it? Here are a few ways:

Address Pain Points

This is probably the most important piece of successful content marketing because providing solutions to common problems is how businesses make sales. As a marketer, your job is to lay out simply exactly how your company’s product or service helps eliminate these difficulties. For example, let’s say you manufacture office equipment. It is not enough to talk vaguely about how your organization can help a prospect cut costs—you need to explicitly explain that your products:

  1. Are more energy efficient
  2. Require less maintenance
  3. Can be monitored remotely

The theoretical example above gives clear cut solutions to a business that knows it is wasting money by using legacy office equipment. Addressing pain points lets customers know that you understand their industry and can help them do business more efficiently.

Make the Buyer the Hero

Oftentimes in B2B sales the buyer is looking for a way to impress their boss by adopting a solution that dramatically improves operations. Marketers should use that mentality to their advantage by making the buyer the central figure of the content.

Making the buyer a hero allows you to tell a story that has a beginning, middle and end. For instance, the introduction can discuss the boss asking the buyer to find a product to solve a particular problem. The middle of the story addresses the search for the product and the story concludes with the boss praising the buyer for a job well done.  

Don’t Be Afraid to Curate

One the most effective ways to add value to your content is to curate information. Whether you round up a bunch of compelling stats to include in a blog post or put together several use cases for your product, buyers appreciate this kind of content.

Why? Because you’ve saved them valuable time they would otherwise have spent doing their own research in every corner of the Internet. Put simply, there’s nothing more valuable to buyers than giving them their own time back.

How Can You Execute?

Content creation that includes real value can be difficult if you haven’t been doing it all along. If you find that connecting with readers is more difficult than you thought, consider engaging with a content strategy vendor that can help light the way. Click here to learn more about how Content Boost helps businesses execute their content marketing strategies. 


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