While B2C brands have been hitting content marketing full-bore, B2B companies have been a little more circumspect. Many B2B small businesses have discovered that creating effective content that gets results is not the easiest task.
What are these results they’re trying to achieve?
- Lead generation
- Customer engagement
According to a study by DemandWave, whitepapers, case studies, videos and infographics work well.
The problem is that it takes time, effort and skill to produce this type of content that attracts the leads you want.
“Even though B2B marketers recognize materials such as research reports, blogs and videos are effective, producing them is another matter entirely. Research reports and videos were ranked two of the most difficult content formats, even though they also ranked among the top three most effective.” eMarketer
Why is original research so effective?
B2B buyers are looking for information that will help them with their business issues. They want to understand people, processes, products and technology. They need help with decision-making. Good research offers them the insights they need, but don’t have the resources to find themselves.
Why Original Research is Tough
The first issue is to find a topic that will catch the attention of prospects, customers and the media. Next you need resources to conduct the research. And they have to be skilled people who can actually find and analyze data that delivers AHA! type insights.
Once you have the data it has to be communicated in a visually pleasing way – a well-designed infographic that tells the story does best. Here too, you need someone with skills – a keen sense of design and a good visual IQ. They have to know how to tell a story visually and be able to use the tools available to produce eye-catching graphics.
- Hire a team that specializes in research and presentation of results.
- Train your in- house team to do this.
If you have a small team and they are already maxed out, hiring research and presentation experts to help you is probably the sensible thing to do. They have the skills and can deliver great results right away – there is no runway of getting trained.
Evolve Digital Labs created an excellent study on how patient-centric and digitally usable the Top 50 Hospital websites are. Their goal was to pique the interest of hospitals in the US and generate leads for upgrading hospital websites.
The research was impeccable and the results were very interesting. But the report they wrote was long-winded, hard to read and understand, and had no visuals at all. The first release of the study got no media interest at all. After a rewrite of the summary of the study along with a good infographic of the main points, it got lots of play in the media and healthcare blogs. As a result they got more than 1000 downloads of the study – all qualified leads.
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