New Report: 5 Statistics You Need to Know on How Content Influences Purchases

These days there’s no question that great content is a foundational element of any marketing strategy—especially in B2B. In fact, according to Content Marketing Institute’s (CMI) 2017 benchmarking report, 89% of B2B marketers use content marketing to “attract and retain a clearly defined audience—and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”

And thanks to yet another insightful report from CMI—the latter objective is our focus today.

Last week, CMI and SmartBrief released their How Content Influences the Purchasing Process report, featuring data and insights collected from 1,200 SmartBrief subscribers. The aim of the report was to dig into the minds of those who are actually consuming content, and uncover what types of content are most influential, how decision-makers perceive vendor content, and more.

6 Best Practices for Nurturing B2B Marketing Qualified Leads

The rise of the internet, digital technologies and social media platforms have transformed the way consumers make purchasing decisions—and not just for B2C consumers, but for B2B as well. In fact, according to CEB, B2B buyers are 57% of the way through a purchasing decision before engaging with a sales rep.

But, as a savvy B2B marketer, you already knew all this. So, you’ve designed an integrated strategy featuring a hearty mix of marketing tactics to help build trust and awareness as prospects do their research. You’re turning out thoughtful, relevant content that informs, engages and inspires action. You’re working with industry influencers to add credibility and authority to your efforts. Heck, you’re even driving what you believe are solid marketing qualified leads (MQLs).

10 Easy Wins to Improve Your B2B Marketing Leads

And now, a brief message from Captain Obvious and his sidekick, Sidekick Boy:

The goal of marketing is to generate leads that convert to sales, thereby generating revenue.

What a thunderously, crashingly obvious statement! Captain Obvious saves the day again.

But seriously, it’s useful for marketers to occasionally contemplate this most fundamental truth about our profession. We’re not here to just raise awareness, get subscribers, or foster engagement. All of these goals should be parts of a strategy to get to the ultimate goal: lead generation.

We have more tools now than ever before to measure how our efforts translate to leads. Unfortunately, that means marketers—especially in B2B—are under more pressure than ever to improve the quantity and quality of the leads we deliver to sales.

Don’t Skip Leg Day: 7 Content Marketing Must-Haves for Healthcare Marketers

Never skip leg day.

That is, when you’re working out, it’s important to change it up. Vary your routine and work different sets of muscles. It’s the difference between looking incredible, and looking like Mr. Incredible.

Your healthcare marketing needs just as much variety as your fitness routine does. Different types of content will appeal to different audiences, or the same audience in different ways. Stick with a single content marketing strategy—whether it’s white papers, webinars, or trade events—and you may see gains in one area. But you’re skipping leg day, and you’re going to end up top-heavy.

Fortunately, there’s plenty of variety to be had in healthcare content. With the content types below, you can build a well-rounded workout that will improve your content marketing’s overall fitness.

12 Ways to Ignite Your B2B Marketing #IgniteB2B

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B2B is no longer the purview of “boring to boring” but instead represents one of the greatest opportunities for innovation in the marketing world. But what ideas, strategies and tactics are igniting the sales cycles, lead nurtures and ROI performance metrics for B2B brands?

To answer that question I reached out to my fellow speakers at the upcoming Ignite B2B Marketing conference, happening in London June 22nd. B2B marketers from major brands including Dun & Bradstreet, Shell, Philips, ADP, Adobe, Cisco, Samsung and IBM as well as my pals Carla Johnson and Doug Kessler chimed in with their insights on everything from the growing role of data to customer experience to virtual reality to continuous innovation.

How to Inspire Your B2B Audience with Killer Content Marketing

B2B content marketers: It’s time to get over our inferiority complex.

Yes, the B2C folks are over there marketing cool stuff like basketball shoes and energy drinks, while we’re stuck with cloud software solutions and medical imaging machinery.

Yes, we’re marketing to business professionals on a buying committee that has to commit to million-dollar deals. Which would buy a lot of basketball shoes and energy drinks.

But that does not mean B2C has more fun. It doesn’t mean B2B is boring. It doesn’t mean we have to play it safe.

Can B2B content be as compelling, as emotional, as vibrant—let’s face it—as cool as B2C?

As we say in Minnesota, yabetcha.

The B2B Buying Disconnect: 5 Opportunities for Increasing Influence with Technology Buyers

Thanks to the internet, social media and mobile technologies, buyer’s are more self-directed than ever before, using these tools to conduct independent research that informs important purchasing decisions for themselves and the companies they work for.

However when it comes to B2B buyers, specifically those looking to purchase tools and software from technology vendors, while independent research is a major trend, 60% say their vendor is an influential part of the purchasing process, according to TrustRadius’ new report, The B2B Buying Disconnect.

Of course, that’s not the whole story. While technology vendors—namely their marketing and sales teams—play an undeniably important role in the purchasing process, they may be missing the mark or leaving opportunities on the table by focusing on the wrong things. And that’s precisely what TrustRadius’ study aimed to uncover.

Content Marketing: 4 Ways to Make Sure Your Mobile Content Connects

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How often do you use your smartphone as a phone? Personally, I think of it as more for avoiding human interaction than facilitating it:
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These days my desktop and home laptop are gathering dust; I can do it all on my phone. The only reason we still call them “phones” is “personal computation device” sounds too nerdy.

All of which to say: Mobile is the current and next frontier for content marketing. Reports show that 65% of digital media time is now spent on a mobile device. Not only that, all digital growth is now coming from mobile usage—expect to see desktop traffic stagnate or reduce while mobile traffic continues to grow.

Why Most Content Doesn’t Get Social Shares–And How to Get Yours Seen

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It’s been a little over a year since Buzzsumo’s Steve Rayson dropped a bombshell on content marketers. After his company analyzed over one million blog posts, it was Steve’s sad duty to inform us that:

  • 75% of posts received zero domain links
  • 50% of posts received 8 shares or less
  • 75% of posts received 39 shares or less

In other words, that beautiful content we spent so much time crafting? Half of it didn’t attract enough people to fill a baseball roster. Three quarters of it didn’t attract enough people to fill a school bus.

It’s hard to feel good about numbers like that. But you don’t have to feel hopeless and you don’t have to take it lying down. Your audience is out there, waiting for great content to rise above the swelling tides of mediocrity.

The One Thing You Must Have for B2B Marketing Success: Be the Best Answer

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While B2B companies are investing in content for marketing, making more content is not creating the windfall of leads that many senior business marketing executives had hoped for. The problem? A lack of insight about what makes better content.

I believe that finding a solution to the “more” vs. “better” challenge starts with customer empathy.

Steve RaysonAs an example, Steve Rayson, director at BuzzSumo and Anders Pink, explained: “The primary motivation of B2B customers is to do their jobs better. Thus, at BuzzSumo we spend a lot of time trying to understand the questions our customers are asking and the issues they are struggling with. We then try to produce helpful content which addresses these concerns.”