I went to Content Marketing World last week – and if you were there and attended Andrew and Pete’s session on creating unique content for B2B marketing, “The Competitive Edge: How to Create a Unique Content Spin in a World of Copycats,” you most definitely saw me. I’m the goofball in the green dress who happily stood up to announce what I do, then made sure Andrew and Pete let us out for lunch. You’re welcome!
In all seriousness, Andrew and Pete’s session on creating unique B2B content resonates highly in the B2B technology industry. As entrenched as I am in the alphabet soup of ERP, CRM, XaaS, and the like, I see a lot of products with only minor differences. Sure, there are the big names, but for startups and smaller companies, it’s hard to compete with the exact same messaging. These big brands have bigger budgets. So how do you stand out?
If only it was as easy as being the one who fearlessly stands up to introduce herself during a session. In B2B technology content marketing, there are plenty of brands shouting to be heard, paying for placement on LinkedIn, Google, and even Facebook. We need to create unique content for B2B marketing, specifically in technology. It’s a content-rich industry, to borrow Andrew and Pete’s term, so the virtual airwaves are saturated. If we follow the leader, we’ll always be one step behind.
How to Create Unique Content for B2B Marketing
How can we put a spin on our content? I’ve been thinking about this on every single one of my runs. As B2B technology content marketers, we tend to rely on the basics: white papers, case studies, blog posts. I have no beef with that – I mean, come on, I’m the gal who literally wrote a book on it.
But what if we could get irreverent, a little cheeky, as the Brits would say? Can we even do that? Of course we can, and that will help us create unique content for B2B marketing.
Everyone, go grab your personas. Are they broad and generic, or do you have specifics? It’s okay if they’re broad. But start thinking about what would get the attention of your persona. For example, you’re selling a solution that helps track how long someone reads an asset, like a white paper or case study, to determine whether or not they’re a qualified lead, then provides marketing automation to nurture the prospect:
“Jennifer” is the chief marketing officer for Zippy, a midsize B2B technology firm. She oversees a team of marketers and struggles with ensuring the sales department receives qualified leads and nurturing less-interested leads.
Let’s dig a little deeper into Jennifer:
Jennifer is in her 40s. She understands technology fairly well but isn’t deep into the weeds. She’s very teachable. As a marketer, she appreciates a sense of humor. Jennifer needs to be able to justify MarTech purchases to the CFO with hard numbers. Sales and marketing have a love-hate relationship due to the quality of leads, and Jennifer wants to bridge that gap so that she can mine sales teams for valuable information to inform content marketing initiatives.
With a persona like Jennifer’s, you can create unique content for B2B marketing, something a little tongue in cheek, if this is in line with your brand. Yes, it works better for smaller companies to create a listicle with a title like, “Top 10 Ways to Make the Sales Team Your BFFs,” but literally any B2B technology company can create unique content in the form of a listicle, infographic, or interactive content like a flipbook. Trust me, Jim the IT Director in his 50s is just as sick of reading the same kind of white papers as you are of writing them.