Writing B2B content marketing often feels like writing an action scene.
You need to put your character (the customer) into a situation where they must escape a real-life problem. Whether it’s achieving a marketing goal or solving a customer retention issue, you create steps to plan that escape and get some benefits in the process.
Just like a novel writer gets the pleasure of watching the character solve the problem, a B2B content writer’s delight comes from positive customer testimonials, comments, and partnerships.
Coming up with ideas for successful B2B content marketing could be an action scene on its own. In this article, we’re sharing six ways to escape this problem. This time, they are six unexpected tips to help you create amazing B2B content.
Dig in to see how to tackle that obstacle.
1. Get Content Ideas from Reddit
Reddit isn’t the first thing that comes to mind of many content marketers, especially in B2B. This discussion website, however, could be an excellent source of inspiration for a high-converting blog article.
Reddit is a place where real people from all walks of life share their thoughts, advice, and problems. This means that many of your customers are there, too.
That’s why Reddit is a part of the so-called “empathy research” in copywriting. Since keywords aren’t everything, copywriters also turn to this site to find customer insights.
People are looking for advice on many topics there.
This Reddit user, for example, wants to know how to do B2B email marketing. It’s a nice idea to help B2B copywriters create a valuable piece of content.
Here are some B2B content ideas based on this discussion:
- A Complete Beginner’s Guide to Writing a Winning B2B Email
- 10 B2B Email Marketing Templates for Better Results
- 5 Most Common Email Marketing Mistakes B2B Marketers Make
Just like that, one Reddit discussion helped to find good content topics. The only thing left is to check if Google has enough interest from users in a keyword research tool.
As you can see, a few hundred people are looking for B2B email marketing every month (See the “Volume” column below). Globally, this number increases to 1,000+ (the “Global” column).
So, there’s decent interest in this topic. This means B2B email marketing companies can benefit if they create valuable content using these keywords.
One more example
This person is looking to know how long it takes to earn decent money as a B2B sales representative. They give some personal background information, too – it’s a nice find for career advisors and resume building companies.
Blog content ideas based on this question:
- Resume Tips for Sales Reps to Get 50K+ Jobs
- How Much Money You Can Make in B2B Sales
- Career Guide for Cold Calling Sales Reps
See, you can get ideas for a really valuable content piece. Once again, if the keyword research checks out, you might be onto something. Use Reddit for idea searches, and you’ll build content marketing competency that’ll serve your company well in the long-term.
2. Create an Article out of a Webinar
Have you done any webinars recently?
If yes, you can repurpose it to create content that builds your personal brand and attracts leads.
Webinars offer a lot of valuable information for customers, so you can summarize the main points in a nice blog article. It’ll be one more opportunity to share valuable content, rank on Google, and build a reputation as an authority on your topic.
B2B folks are using this tactic often.
Here’s an example. A head of marketing shares a local marketing webinar summary.
To repurpose webinar content:
- Re-watch the webinar and make a list of the most important tips shared
- Use that list to structure an article
- Write the article and expand on the chosen points, mentioning that they come from a webinar
- Distribute the article on your blog, via email and post to your social media channels.
Let’s suppose you’ve done a webinar on omni-channel marketing for B2B companies. The most important points to search for could be omnichannel marketing mistakes, tips, examples, and strategy suggestions.
There’s a bonus in doing this for you.
An article will also be an extra opportunity to promote the webinar. If a person reads the content and wants to know more, they might want to check the video – so add a link to the full webinar in your content.
3. Write LinkedIn Posts with Short Clips from Webinars
Another way to repurpose webinar content is to create short clips with the most important points. This is an easy way to enhance your video marketing strategy and could be shared on LinkedIn for people in a hurry.
The technique is:
- Choose the most important points from the webinar
- Create short, digestible pieces covering those points (no more than a few minutes in length)
- Share them on LinkedIn and invite viewers to check out the recording and the rest of the webinar.
Your main goal as a writer is to give a compelling and concise description of the video. You can mention the expertise of the speaker to establish trust. Also, give a hint on how the viewer can benefit.
Salesforce Marketing Cloud does exactly that in this LinkedIn post.
4. Make Your Case Studies Simpler
Case studies are highly effective and can be a very persuasive long-form content tactic.
In fact, the Content Marketing Institute found that 73% of B2B marketing folks have used them to attract clients.
But there’s a problem.
Many case studies don’t live up to their true potential. They go straight to the content graveyard because they:
- Are hard to read
- Are full of jargon
- Have weird acronyms.
Another reason is overpromotion that leads to extremely high expectations. If an overly promoted case study frustrates readers with a lack of insights, a company is risking its reputation and losing sales opportunities.
That’s why B2B businesses should consider making case studies simpler. These tactics should help reduce the cognitive load and achieve maximum impact.
Simplify case study headlines
Have you seen case study headlines like this?
“ABC Company accelerated adoption of AI by converting data-based data insights into a long-term, customer-centered sales approach.”
Sounds serious, and… So boring.
Although we have this perception of B2B decision-makers being loyal fans of such complexity, the reality is pretty much different.
About 40% of B2B content marketers said that case studies were the least successful content type (Content Marketing Institute).
Avoid complex headlines by all means.
An excellent way to simplify yet keep a headline full of value: mention the company, the results, and the timeframe.
Like this headline from a Lori Carr case study on using LinkedIn for sales. It’s simple to read, has no fluff, and gives on-point information.
Reduce cognitive load with short paragraphs and bullet points
Many case studies are well-equipped to… defend castles from invaders.
Because of one thing:
Walls of text.
Writers fill entire pages with a couple of paragraphs, which makes it hard to read. They add to the cognitive load, an amount of working memory and effort a person applies to read and understand the text.
Use short paragraphs and bullet points.
Short paragraphs consist of two or three sentences. This helps to break up the wall of text and make it easier to read. It’s a better way to make more people read your case studies.
Bullet points effectively reduce cognitive load by listing the most important information. The format is very easy to understand – a few bullet points can replace a few paragraphs.
Also, bullet points are a must to list challenges, goals, and results within a case study.
Accenture uses both writing techniques. In this case study about implementing cloud in California local government agencies, most paragraphs have only two sentences. Bullet points help to find the most important takeaways.
Write in a simpler language
Complex writing style and jargon are everywhere in B2B content marketing, and getting rid of them might not be possible in every piece of content. Yet, you should try to write in a simpler language and avoid jargon as much as possible.
Take a look at this section from a Dell case study.
The description has 61 words and is… not so pleasant to read. There are unnecessarily complex words like “deploy,” “transform,” and “solutions” on top of the difficult writing style.
Let’s rewrite and simplify it, shall we?
Check out this version…
“Mobility apps and hyperconverged infrastructure proved to be key to increase employee recruitment and retention. Republic Airways gave employees on-the-go data access and ensured work satisfaction thanks to Dell Technologies.”
Just 30 words – that’s 50% less than the original version. But it still gives the reader the same idea.
The main benefit is that the simplified version reduces the cognitive load. So, it gives a better chance to have more potential customers reading your case studies to the end (and understanding each point, too).
5. Create Quizzes
Yes, B2B quizzes, I know what you’re thinking.
But hear me out: we’re not talking about “Which Lord of the Rings Character Are You?” style quizzes here.
The kinds of quizzes your B2B audience should appreciate:
- Readiness assessments
- Industry benchmark tests
- Best practices tests
- Knowledge assessments
- Risk evaluations
- Skills assessments.
These quizzes can help you learn more about customers and create extra sales opportunities. For example, with an email marketing quiz, a company can find out customers’ preferences and propose tailored solutions or plans based on their answers.
And if you think that email marketing quizzes don’t exist–
This one from Business Wise…
… are just a couple of examples.
To make quizzes a legit source of leads:
- Use customer research insights to create questions. For example, a social media marketing agency can make a quiz “Is Your Social Media Marketing Effective?” because marketing performance is a relevant problem for its target audience.
- Try to be helpful first. Have your leads answer questions and find out answers, then propose your product as a solution where applicable.
The biggest challenge for copywriters here is to build a quiz on a topic that resonates with the target audience. Customer surveys and research are helpful to find good options, so consider starting by going through them first.
So, quizzes are an excellent idea to attract new and nurture existing leads. Promote your quizzes via emails, make them a part of a loyalty program, and share them on social media.
6. Check What B2B Influencers are Doing
Yes, B2B influencer marketing is a thing.
In fact, 29% of B2B marketers say they will be investing in this strategy in 2021, according to this Content Marketing Institute report.
Since B2B companies have longer sales cycles compared to B2C, using influencers makes perfect sense. An influencer can share content to re-engage leads and update them on company news and products.
For B2B content writers, influencers could be a major source of inspiration.
Dell Luminaries podcast is one example of excellent B2B influencer marketing content. It’s led by the company’s head of B2B influencer relationship and shares useful insights from the world of technology.
From the Internet of Things to innovations in global supply chains – there are numerous topics to get insights for.
Consider visiting the websites of the leading companies in your market or niche. Chances are good that some might already be doing influencer marketing and getting nice results. Who knows, maybe you’ll even decide to reach out to influencers and start a campaign of your own.
Places to look for competitors’ B2B influencer content include their websites (sections like a blog or a knowledge center) and social media profiles.
B2B Content Marketing for Sales: The Bottom Line
There, you’re closer to creating amazing B2B marketing content. The B2B copywriting world is a fascinating world, and you can get content ideas from almost anywhere. As you can see, you can create awesome interactive content and become an empathy researcher. So many opportunities to be helpful to customers, build your reputation, and become a market leader.
Follow these unconventional tips for writing B2B content, and your company will get higher in Google results and attract more leads and customers. And, more importantly, this will be a huge step toward building a reputation of a company that knows its customers like nobody else.
Helene Cue is a content writer and editor with over eight years of experience covering the addictive world of digital marketing. Her experience writing thesis statements, news articles, and other content allow her to create value-packed, well-researched, in-depth articles, and guides. Visit her site to learn more about her work.