“May you live in interesting times” is considered to be an old Chinese curse. After all, “interesting,” according to the American Heritage Dictionary, means “arousing or holding the attention; absorbing.” Nothing in there says that “interesting” translates to “positive.” Think of the last car accident you saw; most people slowed down and looked because it was interesting

Right now, we live in interesting marketing times. With the advent of social media, marketing seems to get squeezed down to 140-character Tweets and short Facebook updates. But B2B marketers know better. We know that B2B marketing can only use a little bit of this strategy, because our products are complex and require more explanation than a Tweet allows. Content marketing has surfaced as the answer to this conundrum: case studies, white papers, and blog entries are all ways that B2B marketers can cut through the clutter of short information bursts and provide a substantial amount of information to prospects and customers.

The key, then, is to leverage content to appeal to our prospects. We need to do the research on them, find out what their pain points are, and how we can solve them with our products and services. We need to look closely at their organizations to find out what is already working as well as what isn’t working at all, and then we need to communicate our solutions clearly.

These are definitely interesting times for B2B marketers as we further split from B2C marketing tactics to appeal to our customers, some of whom still see Tweets and Facebook pages as frivolous and expect more from us. We’ll rise to that challenge and provide content that answers their questions.