…was my initial thought when starting to write this blog. Does this sound anything familiar to you? Producing meaningful and distinguishable content is a challenge of the digital era where the mediums to distribute it are right here in our hands basically for free.
Creating content for marketing purposes is even more challenging given that, instead of just making a big noise about yourself, you should actually get people to buy things from you. Creating content for B2B marketing purposes is perhaps the most challenging because you should get people convinced that they will not get sacked if buying things from you.
Accordingly, promoting trustworthy, expertise and continuity is the key especially in B2B content marketing as it is not just a new pair of shoes what the customer is looking for.
Furthermore, when it comes to content marketing, information that helps solving your customers’ problems is probably the most, if not the only valuable resource that you can make use of. The quality of your content is directly proportional to the value it represents for your target audience, that is, whether they find it relevant and useful in relation to their own objectives. That is also what distinguishes it from the spam.
Content marketing can come in many forms. Based on the latest ContentMarketing Institute’s report, the most popular content marketing tactics used by B2B marketers are Articles, Social Media (other than blogs), Blogs, eNewsletters, Case Studies, In-Person Events, Videos, White Papers and Webinars.
Content marketing is not thus exactly advertising but quite something else. According to content marketing specialist Joe Pulizzi from ContentMarketing Institute and Joe Chernov VP of ContentMarketing at Eloquacontent marketing is THE new way to regain the attention of publics who have become to shut their eyes and ears from the never-ending sales pitches. They define content marketing as ‘business-relevant communications minus the selling’. Content marketing can, thus, be seen as a new, more delicate way of communicating and promoting expertise and engaging with customers online. But in the end the objective remains the same; to increase sales by bringing up new business opportunities and enhancing brand awareness and loyalty.
There are no common rules that would apply to all situations, cases and industries but there are a few examples of successful B2B content marketing initiatives. This futuristic video from the glass company Corning demonstrating what something as boring as glass could do is claimed to be one of the best B2B viral video ever. Educating and entertaining? Or what do you think?
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M.Sc.Econ, project researcher
University of Oulu