[Guest Post]: How to Create Engaging Content that Supports Buyer Enablement
Buyer enablement is not just the realm of your sales team, it's of the utmost importance for marketers and salespeople alike. In fact, alignment of sales and marketing can help your company become 67% better at closing deals.
Your company's marketing team, whether internal or outsourced to an agency, is responsible for solving problems with valuable content and information so potential customers can make informed decisions. emlen is the go to tool for efficiently and effectively conveying the information, but it's also important to fill your content hub with the right content that engages. You can do this by coming up with a content strategy that provides them with the necessary resources they need in order to make a purchase decision. Here are some guidelines to follow to effectively build the best content for buyer enablement.
1. Start with The Building Blocks
Prior to putting together your content, there are a few building blocks that will help achieve buyer enablement.
- Keep your target audiences in mind: You need to understand their needs and what they're looking for in order to create relevant content that will engage them. This is where personas come in handy. By creating personas, you can get a better understanding of your target audiences and what motivates them.
- Bring your key messaging into the mix: Make sure your key messaging is clear and consistent across all of your content. This way, buyers will be able to easily identify what your company stands for and what it has to offer. When all of these pieces are working together, you'll have an effective content marketing strategy that will engage buyers and help to support your sales process.
- Know your objectives: What are you hoping to achieve with your content? Whether you're looking to generate leads or simply engage buyers, make sure your objectives are clear.
- Plan ahead: Don't try to create all of your content at once. Instead, plan out a timeline and map out what types of content you'll be creating and when. This will help ensure you've got a steady stream of content in place.
- Talk with Sales: Marketers should work with sales to unearth information about buyer needs that will support the content creation process.
2. The B2B Buyer's Journey
The B2B buyer's journey is often long and tedious, as they go through various stages of the buying process before making a purchase. Gartner found that 77% of B2B buyers rated their purchase experience as extremely complex or difficult. For this reason, marketing teams play an important role in creating engaging content that provides exactly what a prospective customer needs to understand, and believe in, at various stages of the buyer's journey. In order to supply this essential content, the team must understand what buyers are looking for at each phase.
By providing valuable information aligned with the goals of your personas, the key messaging of your company, and the stage the buyer is in, marketers can better personalize content, help to make the process easier for buyers, and shorten the overall journey, thereby assisting your sales team.
3. Types of Content That Supports Buyer Enablement
There are many types of content that can be used to support buyer enablement. Here are some of the most effective:
Videos are a powerful tool for engaging buyers and explaining your products or services in a visually appealing way.
Infographics are a great way to share a lot of information in a quick and easy-to-digest manner that will keep buyers engaged. With their eye-catching visuals and valuable information, infographics can help buyers get caught up on what's new in your industry or learn about something that might be of interest to them.
Case studies are great for explaining how you've helped your customers solve problems or meet needs in the past. They offer proof of what your products or services can do, as well as what they've done for others. Social proof is a strong driver of a purchase decision. Plus, it helps buyer's influencers make the sale to decision makers.
While videos, infographics, and case studies are all great content types for supporting buyer enablement, presentations can be especially powerful. They offer a more in-depth look at your company and its products or services, can help to explain how you can help buyers meet their needs, and more.
4. Getting the Most Bang for Your Buck
Beyond the strategy and types of content, the quality needs to help sales with their processes. Unfortunately, only 43.9% of executives feel that the quality of the content provided to their salespeople meets or exceeds expectations. So, here are a few tips for getting the most out of your content and enhancing the enablement of buyers:
- Create content that is visually appealing and easy to read.
Buyers typically want content that they can glance at and absorb the information quickly. With this in mind, it's best to avoid overwhelming consumers with a hefty amount of words and long paragraphs. Use easy-to-read font styles, shorter sentences, and a simple layout including imagery.
- Use Strong Calls To Action at Relevant Stages
It's important to enable buyers to easily take that next step when they're ready. Make sure your calls to action are clear and easy to find. They should also be consistent throughout all of your content. If you have several different types of content, be sure to use the same CTA wording and design in each one. This will help create a smooth and cohesive experience for your buyers. You can also use implicit calls to action within every piece of content, by linking certain key phrases together.
- Keep your content updated and relevant to current trends.
In order to keep your content engaging and effective, it's important to make sure it's up-to-date with the latest trends. This means regularly reviewing your content strategy and making changes as needed. You may need to add new topics, delete old ones, or change the way you present information. The key is to always be adapting to the needs of your buyers.
You can keep track of current trends by following industry news and blogs, and by paying attention to what your buyers are talking about on social media. If you see a topic that's gaining traction, consider adding it to your content strategy. And if you see a trend that doesn't align with your buyers' needs, don't be afraid to buck the trend by focusing on something else.
- Conduct usability testing and make sure your content is easy to navigate and understand.
Conducting usability testing is a great way to make sure your content is easy to navigate and understand. By performing user testing, you can get feedback from buyers on how they interact with your content. This will help you identify any areas that need improvement, so you can make changes that will make the experience better for your buyers.
You can conduct usability testing in several different ways:
- User interviews: Interview buyers about their experience using your content, and ask them for feedback on what works and what doesn't.
- Online surveys: Create an online survey for buyers to take about their experience with your content, and ask them for suggestions on what you could improve.
- A/B testing: By creating two versions of a piece of content and testing them against each other, you can see which one performs better. This will help you determine what type of content your buyers prefer.
- Review emlen's analytics to measure how users engage with your content to understand what content is working and what is not.
Marketing teams rely on analytics to measure how users are engaging with their content. This data can help them understand what content is working and what isn't, so they can make changes that will improve the buyer enablement process. emlen's analytics showing aspects like click behavior, engagement time & downloads can be used for both buyer signals as well as by the marketing team to gain insights on current and future content needs. This can also help determine which content has the most impact on buyers to invest in creating more of that type of content.
Buyers become increasingly enabled when the content you provide is setup well to engage, solve problems, and assist in purchase decisions. Beyond planning out your strategy well, the essential factors include reviewing personas and key messaging, aligning content and it's delivery with the stage of the buyer journey, using diverse content types to engage, and finally, adding the best content tactics in to truly win buyers over. These aspects, developed correctly, will serve to elevate your buyer enablement and will payoff huge dividends for conversions into new clients and customers.
Author info: Mark Howells is Chief Strategist at Dakota Ridge Marketing, a comprehensive marketing agency for B2B companies. Through our 3 phase program we cover your strategic foundation in a 4 week PLAN phase followed by the tactical BUILD and RUN implementation of those strategies, that boosts lead gen and growth. We use a hybrid pricing model, meaning our PLAN phase is a flat fee, then the campaigns are all performance based fees, so we only succeed when you succeed. We’d love to conduct a complimentary strategy analysis for you... Apply Now.