It’s getting harder to get your content read by prospects.  

 

Every day, your content competes with a tidal wave of content choices.  The question on every marketer’s mind is –

 

“How do I cut through the clutter and make an impact?”

 

The answer isn’t just to produce more content. Instead you need a smart approach that precisely targets your customer’s information needs.  

 

Do it right and you’ll create content your audience craves.

 

Today, we’ll outline how to build a strong foundation for your content’s success. Leveraged the SBI annual workbook to guide your Content Strategy and Planning by reviewing pages 190 – 193 of the PDF.

 

Understand Your Target Audience

 

Identify your buyer personas first. Leverage this information into your content creation process.

 

  • What “watering holes” are most visited by your target audience?
  • What content are they consuming right now?

     

We’ve created a Content Messaging Strategy Cheat Sheet to help align your content with your client’s needs. The Cheat Sheet identifies 6 key messaging elements that your content needs to address. We’ve also added diagnostic questions pinpoint any gaps hidden in your content messaging. Click here to download the Messaging Strategy Cheat Sheet.

 

Remember your audience research choices are not restricted to online tools.

 

Many of the traditional marketing platforms still deliver great value. You can continue leveraging…   

 

  • Books
  • Podcasts
  • Magazines
  • Events

     

…to develop a profile of your audience. This allows you to really understand the value your audience is getting from your content and where they consume it.

 

Anticipate Your Prospect’s “Trigger Events”  

 

What converts a suspect into a prospect, a lead, your new customer?

 

An event usually pushes the prospect into a problem-solving process, motivating them to seek out content that will inform or solve their problems. For example, you may remember the Y2K era. Y2K was the mother of all trigger events.

 

These trigger events help dictate what type of content should be introduced, in what sequence, and through which channels.  Use the Content Marketing Messaging Strategy Checklist to help you zero in on these trigger events.

 

Produce Content To Distribute Across Platforms

 

Create content that is engaging. Use the intelligence mined during planning. Align your content marketing with the target audience’s favorite “watering holes”, aka distribution platforms. Listen to a recent podcast guest, Chief Marketing Officer Mary Clark from Syniverse: Proven Steps to Earn Brand Preference with Content Marketing.

 

The key to linking production to publishing is placement. Certain types of content are more appropriate for certain channels. Here’s a breakdown of the top few:

 

  • Bite-size, timely content – Twitter
  • Overview, opinion content – Blog or Website
  • Solutions, explanations – Whitepaper or Website
  • Branding, awareness, or event – Newsletter or Email
  • Validation, testimonials, points of view – 3rd Party Interviews
  • Premium, exclusive content – Private Websites or Apps
  • Visual content / storytelling – Webinars, YouTube or Slideshare

     

Maximize audience engagement with “The Content Pyramid” 

 

 

Content marketing teams are driven to create engaging material in various shapes and sizes. The base of the pyramid includes blog content with progressively more personalized content.

 

The level of engagement with the content and target audience increases as they move up the pyramid from:

 

  • Blog,
  • Newsletter or email,
  • Webinars,
  • Videos,
  • Podcasts, and
  • Mobile apps

     

Your content marketing strategy should have multiple points of distribution. You leverage re-purposed content across platforms to read your target audience. Each touch-point adds up to increase awareness in slightly different ways. 

 

Your Next Step

 

 

We’ve detailed the process you should take to create content your prospect’s crave.  Start strong with the Content Messaging Strategy Cheat Sheet.  Once the foundation is set shift your attention to creating, distributing, and re-purposing your content.

 

For those serious about creating a B2B content marketing capability, consider spending some time with me on this subject.  Come see me in Dallas at The Studio, SBI’s multimillion dollar, one-of-a-kind, state-of-the-art executive briefing center. A visit to The Studio can help you tackle your content marketing plan and you can see firsthand how SBI creates content from the view as a guest. SBI Media is comprised of a television show, podcast, magazine, and blog and they are the most read, viewed, and listened to thought leadership channels in the field of B2B sales and marketing.

 

The Studio

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Greg Alexander

Leads the firm's focus on the CEO’s role in accelerating revenue growth by getting the product team, the marketing department, and the sales organization into strategic alignment.

Greg is the host of The SBI Podcast, the most listened to sales and marketing podcast on the internet.

 

He is the host of SBI TV, a monthly television program broadcast on the internet featuring top B2B sales and marketing leader sharing their strategies to grow revenues.

 

Greg is the Editor-in-Chief of The SBI Magazine, the leading B2B publication focused on sales and marketing effectiveness.

 

He is the author of two critically acclaimed books Topgrading for Sales and Making the Number.

 

Greg has authored over 100 articles on SBI’s award winning blog, The SBI Blog.

 

He graduated from The University of Massachusetts Amherst with a BA in English and received his MBA from Georgia Tech.

 

Video:

 

Transforming the Sales Organization inside Fortune 500 Companies

Greg Alexander and John Gleason, Chief Sales Officer of Ryder, talk about the unique challenges of transforming a sales team inside of very large enterprises.

 

A Better Way to Structure Your Sales Force

Greg Alexander and Tony Capucille, Chief Sales Officer at Heartland Payment Systems, discuss the pros and cons of the 7 B2B sales organizational models.

 

Build a team of A Players Inside the Sales Organization

Greg Alexander and Todd Cione, Chief Revenue Officer at Rackspace, talk about hiring, onboarding, and developing exceptional sales talent.

 

Articles

 

Fill Every Role on Your Team with an A Player

In this article, Greg Alexander makes the case for applying the TopGrading methodology to the sales team, and outlines how to do so.

 

What CEOs Need to Know About Their Marketing Strategies

In this article, Greg Alexander and Rashid Skaf, CEO of AMX, discuss the role the CEO plays in crafting a company’s marketing strategy.

 

What CEOs are Looking for in a Sales Leader

In this article, Greg Alexander and George Norton, leader of Heidrick & Struggles Chief Sales Officer practice, discuss what CEOs need in the chief sales officer role.

Read full bio >