When people are looking for tech solutions, the first thing they do is go online to search. Since you’re in the tech industry, they’ll expect you to have a robust and high-quality presence.
In the research phases of the buyer journey, they’re looking first for information. They’ll often look past your marketing materials and focus on educational resources. 80% of decision-makers say they prefer to get company information via articles rather than advertisements or overt marketing materials.
That’s where the job of content marketing begins.
Understand Your Customer
Marketers develop buyer personas for a reason. They help focus on the target customer and provide a framework to create content. As you develop content, it’s crucial to understand your target customer’s pain points and goals and create content that will draw them in and resolve their queries. You earn trust and credibility by demonstrating industry expertise and offering solutions to the pain.
Who are my customers and what problems can I solve?
You’ll want to assess your inbound marketing strategy by doing an inventory of your available assets. Identify gaps in your marketing materials that you need to create.
The more you can look at this from the customer’s point of view, the better off you’ll be. Examine search queries from your customers and common keyword phrases to find these gaps.
As B2B buyers go through the customer journey, you will need content to impact them at each stage.
What marketing materials do I have and what do I need?
Define Your Goals and KPIs
When you’re developing your content marketing strategy, you need to make sure you know the goal for each piece of content you will create.
You also need to determine your overall KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). Without benchmarks, it’s difficult to measure whether your content marketing strategies are successful.
Content Marketing KPI Examples
- Get X number of new email newsletter signups
- Increase site traffic and dwell time by X
- Create content the ranks on page one of search
- Produce X number of qualified leads
Each KPI should have a specific number to measure success. This can also help in the case where you need to justify your cost or ask for budget increases.
What would I consider a success?
Determine (Digital) Distribution Channels
If you had an unlimited budget, you’d create content and distribute it everywhere. In the real world, however, we all work within constraints. You’ll need to analyze where your customers go online to match your marketing to their behavior.
Where do my target customers spend time online?
The Types of Content That Attracts Tech Buyers
Here’s what doesn’t work anymore: content that reads like an advertisement. The content marketing materials you create need to provide real value. If a user can’t discern important insights, actionable information, or increase their personal knowledge base, it likely will not connect.
Here’s what does work. Include these content marketing strategies into your tech marketing stack:
Position thought leaders in your organization as experts can be an effective way to showcase your brand. It doesn’t have to be limited to the CEO or CTO. Positioning your company as having a deep bench of experts can help build credibility.
Topical & Evergreen Content
Consider creating two types of content, Topical and Evergreen:
Building on current events with relevant content can catch the attention of searchers. Providing thought leadership or solutions to problems that are in the news shows you are on top of what is important now.
Let’s say you provide IT security and privacy solutions to businesses. Articles about how to navigate privacy regulations such as the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) in Canada, the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in the United States, and the European Union’s General Data Privacy Regulations (GDPR) can provide significant value.
Topical content can increase traffic and drive leads for specific solutions.
The downside to topical content is that it can age quickly. Evergreen content stays fresh for longer periods. It will be relevant when someone searches on a topic whether it’s today or two years from now.
An example of evergreen content might include answers to common industry questions, case studies, product tutorials, resource lists, and ultimate guides.
Evergreen content can also play an important role in your site’s SEO. You can craft it to include targeted keywords and long-tail keywords that can have a long-lasting impact.
Each type of content serves different purposes, but they can work together to build credibility and generate leads. Most tech marketers find a combination of both approaches works best.
Case Studies, Success Stories, and Testimonials
Sprinkle in case studies, success stories, and testimonials regularly and often. In sales, you are often in the business of risk mitigation. Anytime you can reduce the risk for a prospect, you are that much closer to a close. Showing others that have had success with your solution helps to ease their concerns. Showing positive outcomes is especially effective in tech marketing when targeting industries such as Finance, Healthcare, Industrial, and Manufacturing.
Diversify your content formats to reach B2B tech buyers in the format they choose.
Videos, blogs, webinars, and interactive content can help people get close to the product or service you’re offering. Don’t just talk about the benefits. Demonstrate how it works and what it does.
Storytelling in Tech
It’s one thing to list facts and figures, but it’s another thing entirely to tell a story.
Whether we like it or not, we’re all emotional beings. Neuroscience research has consistently shown that we make decisions based on emotions more than facts. That’s why case studies and testimonials are so powerful. It allows buyers to connect emotionally. They can see how others solved their problems and can visualize how your product or service might work for them.
Anytime you’re creating content, try to incorporate a story. That doesn’t mean to ignore the facts, the benefits, or the specs of your products. It does mean your message will be more powerful if you can tie it to a personal story.
The Benefits Of Content Marketing in the Tech Space
Content marketing costs, on average, 62% less than outbound marketing. At the same time, it has been proven to generate three times the number of leads.
If saving money and driving more leads isn’t enough to convince you, there’s also a direct correlation between content marketing strategies and Customer Lifetime Value (CLV). When customers see the information content you provide as valuable, they are more likely to develop long-term relationships.
Here are just a few more benefits of integrating a content marketing strategy:
- It builds your brand awareness and reputation at the same time
- Content that is optimized with help with your organic search rankings
- Great content will generate sharing, backlinks, and traffic to your website
- It gives people a reason to return to your website
If you’re not doing content marketing, you run the risk of falling behind your competitors. 88% of B2B marketers are using a content marketing strategy. For most B2B marketers in the tech space, it’s seen as a foundational piece of their tech marketing strategy. When people search for solutions, they’ll see what your competitor offers. It makes sense that they also find you as well.