Lack of time is a common reason marketers cite when explaining why they can’t start or implement a B2B content marketing strategy.
As a busy marketer myself, I completely understand this sentiment. A lot of marketers look at a simple blogging strategy and start to panic about a lack of time and resources.
However, there is a way to make an efficient, time-saving content marketing strategy. In this post, I share tips on how to craft an efficient B2B marketing plan – essentially taking one piece of thought leadership content and turning it into four or more pieces of sought-after content.
Start at the End and Work Backwards
Start your content planning at the end and work back to the beginning. Determine what larger or premium content piece or pieces you want to end up with. Here are a few possible questions to get you thinking about the larger “end” piece.
- Are you looking to create a 10-page white paper that you can gate on your site?
- Do you want to have a series of client case studies for every niche industry you serve?
- Do you want an e-book that you can use to nurture prospects along to become clients?
- Do you need to create a 50+ page catalog of all the products your company sells?
Once you determine the premium content piece, you can break it down into smaller pieces of content to create. For example, a larger e-book can often be broken into at least 5 different chapters or sections – each of which can be drafted as a blog or article. Then when all the articles are drafted, you can piece them together by adding sections here and there for a smooth overall flow.
Build Up to It
This approach focuses on short term goals that will culminate in a larger goal. The difference here is that you may not know what your final goal or content piece is, but you will build up a body of great content. This approach works best when your company has either a specific industry niche or a shortlist of services.
For example, this would work well for a company that offers third-party logistics (3PL) for the medical device industry. The audience is knowledgeable about their industry and the company is knowledgeable about the challenges the audience faces with 3PL. By tackling articles or case studies that address these challenges, the 3PL provider will steadily create content that is educational and useful. After a few months, the 3PL provider should review the content already created, identify common themes, and then re-bundle the articles or case studies into larger, more valuable content pieces – like a buyer’s guide or a glossary of terms or a white paper.
Reuse. Reduce. Recycle.
This phrase is a great mantra for B2B content marketers. Why? Because it’s not about creating more with more, it’s about reusing what already exists in new and interesting ways.
Have a great video interview with a client? Turn it into a written Q&A blog, then takes quotes to use for testimonials on your homepage, then repurpose the blog into a downloadable case study that the sales team can send to prospects.
Have a well-trafficked blog that resonates with your clients and prospects? Turn it into a webinar that enables the audience to ask questions. Or take any helpful chunks for the blog and have a designer create an infographic. Or craft an email that shares the highlights from the blog and direct subscribers back to your company’s blog.
It’s important to continually look at your existing content and find different ways to reuse or repurpose it.
Look Everywhere – Including Sales and Customer Service
A large part of working smarter and more efficiently involves tapping the wonderful resources around you. As a marketer, you may not be the ideal person to come up with all the B2B content marketing pieces or blog topics. However, you may have an experienced sales team or a knowledgeable customer service department. Rather than trying to come up with a comprehensive content marketing plan on your own, tap the internal resources. The sales team understands what prospects are looking for in your products and services while your customer service team likely has ideas on how to make things easier for existing clients.
For example, your customer service team may suggest that a best practices guide will help smooth the onboarding process for customers. In fact, they likely have a bunch of best practices they are already sharing with customers and you simply need to work with them on capturing them for a blog post, or guide, or video, or podcast.
The Best Content Multiplies
Great content marketing strategies leverage content that multiplies, aka produces more than just one stand-alone piece. In addition to looking for new and original topics or content pieces, start thinking about how you can take existing content and repackage it in new and interesting ways.