Most organizations we partner with want a robust library of content they can leverage for marketing, sales, and communications. They’re looking to for relevant blogs, a snappy newsletter, and a few solid lead magnets (perhaps a set of whitepapers, workbooks, or guides). Beyond that, they want an arsenal of success stories to share, speaking opportunities at industry events, features in industry publications, and a more established presence on LinkedIn. These are all results of an effective content marketing strategy and plan.
However, executing on a content strategy and plan is often disrupted by more immediate demands on resources. Organizations move content marketing to the bottom of the to-do list and are left with either a non-existent, outdated, or thrown-together smattering of content pieces that don’t directly tie to their current growth plan or their audience.
The reality is—it does take time and focus to build a valuable content library—but investing in the content marketing process is a worthy endeavor. The best place to start is not with ad-hoc content ideas, but rather with a strategy rooted in your organization’s growth goals, key offerings, and unique expertise.
Getting Started with your B2B Content Marketing Strategy and Plan
The most effective content is packed with actionable insights based on real-world experience. It should ring true to your audience. In our business-to-business healthcare space, that means content written by experts in your organizations and ghostwriters who truly “get” the inside baseball of the space. Without that, the content falls flat.
Ensuring your content speaks to your ideal audience and generates leads takes some planning. It requires thoughtful reflection on your business goals.
We’ve broken down the process of building a business-to-business content strategy into 4 basic steps:
Document your Goals: Define your business goals, offerings, and target audience
Define your Themes: Reflect on your unique areas of expertise and problems you solve
Create your Production Plan Structure: Consider resources, channels, sales campaign plans, and publishing frequency.
Fill in your Plan: Brainstorm and plug-in topics to your defined strategy and production plan.
Tip: Before you invest in content marketing, ensure your company has a solid visual identity, brand voice, and digital presence. As you develop more content and promote it, it is most effective if your company’s website and brand is cohesive and consistent with the focus and quality of your content strategy. This means having clear brand guidelines and a website that reflects those brand guidelines. If your organization does not have these things, stop here and focus on establishing these first.
How to Build your Content Strategy
Once you have a solid brand foundation, it is time to strategize how to promote that brand through content. Below is a deeper dive into our 4-step content strategy planning process. Taking time to walk through these steps will help you build a focused content strategy that optimizes your content production resources and grows your business.