Section Two: The Content
The Nitty Gritty
Alright, I’ve badgered you enough about why you need to be doing this type of marketing. Now let’s get into the types of content you’re going to want to create and how you’ll promote this content.
First, keep in mind the points I made earlier about delivering real content and value. And if you haven’t read Section One: The Why and How yet, click here to go back and read it.
Let’s start with an oldie, but a goody. The eBook has been around for over a decade. Most companies have abandoned them as a useless tool, but they’re wrong!
If deployed correctly and written properly, an eBook can be a lead generating machine. They should be housed on your website under a “Resources” section. They also need to have their own landing page in order to capture the information of the person downloading the eBook. Hubspot, Infusionsoft, Salesforce, Unbounce, and about 100 different companies offer a tool that will allow you to create quick and slick looking landing pages.
Also, spend a little money on getting a graphic designer to spice up your eBook with a nice cover and some visuals. Don’t torture your readers with a wall of text and a ClipArt title page.
If you want to write your eBook about a specific pain point that your customers are facing, don’t be too broad. An eBook titled “Optimize your Operations” is not going to do as well as “The Essential Guide to Team Building and Employee Engagement.” One is extremely vague and one is targeted. People will always download the one that speaks to a pain point they’re facing at that time.
Next, you’ll want to promote your eBook. A great way is through email. You should send it out to your existing clients and potential clients. At the same time, invite them to share it by providing them a link that they can include in a social media post or in an email.
LinkedIn will become one of your greatest allies in content marketing for lead generation. People on LinkedIn love eBooks and best of all, you can target whoever you want. Did you write an eBook that specifically talks to women, ages 25 to 35, that attended an ivy league school, that are in a position of authority, that work for a company over 500 people, and that are based in the Midwest. Awesome! I’m sure that super niche eBook will work out great for you (I wish there was a sarcasm font). But even if you did write this completely useless eBook, you could target that exact audience.
I can’t go into all the details on how the ads work because that’s an entire guide unto itself (GASP! another idea). So, I’ll just give you a high level view of how to do it.
Because you read the previous paragraph, you will already have a very targeted eBook. You’ll know who wants to read it and why they should read it. If you haven’t profiled your ideal customer, then you need to set this book down, take a deep breath, call your team together, and ask them, why the hell you haven’t profiled your ideal customer yet!
Ahem . . . Sorry. Where was I?
Right. You’ll want to target your customers and push them towards the landing page you’ve already created. And voila! You now have their contact information.
Don’t run off and contact them just yet. This is another faux pas that most companies do. You need to treat every single lead you receive with the care and attention that they deserve. They’re delicate little snowflakes that are completely unique and should be treated as such.
You’ll want to nurture every lead through your sales pipeline with customized emails and content to ensure that they’re getting the most pertinent information.
There are hundreds of drip email campaign tools on the market. Many come integrated with other marketing software. So, identify the one that gives you the features you need, and use it. I’m trying not to endorse anything in this eBook.
Except for my rapier wit. That’s on full display.
The goal of drip campaigning is to have your funnel spit out the most qualified and educated leads possible. These leads have shorter close times and require less hand holding. And this holds true for their customer lifecycle as well.
A client that comes in through these methods will be less of a grinder and will understand your process better. This makes them a customer service dream.
Next up… Webinars
Your company should be hosting a monthly or quarterly or even bi-yearly webinar. This webinar should be geared towards existing clients as well as potential clients. And you’ll want to make sure that people want to attend. So, give it a catchy title and fill it with content that’s engaging.
A great tactic for a webinar is to bring on partners in order to promote two value propositions, but also to give insights from two separate organizations.
Yes, you can mention your product and services, but don’t make it all about that. Instead, help the viewers solve a common problem. Give them advice and techniques. Sometimes the solution shouldn’t even require your tool. This will increase the evergreen potential of the webinar. Which allows you to save it as a video and put it on the resources section of your website for future viewing.
You should promote webinars via email, social media (Twitter and Facebook actually work really well with these), and by asking your clients and employees to refer people to the webinar.
Guides and How-To’s
Sometimes people don’t want to sit down and read a 5,000 page book. Instead, they want to get a quick download of information as quickly as possible. So, make these available to them. If your book contains many sections with several great pieces of content, then cut it up and put it into more easily digested mediums.
A one-page guide to writing books would be great for someone who already has a good foundation in the subject. The same way that a quick network discovery guide will help out an IT manager that’s using Google to solve a quick problem.
Make sure it’s branded to your company, but keep your grubby sales hands off of it. Keep it informative and neutral. That way they will recognize your brand, appreciate your expertise, and return to you when they encounter another problem. And hey, maybe on their fourth time back
they’ll be looking to purchase your product.
These guides can be videos or downloadable documents. Use your imagination.
I’ve written at nauseam about blogs, but the reason I do this is because they’re really really important.
First, they’re an SEO dynamo and will generate tons of traffic when written correctly.
Second, they are a data mine when it comes to sourcing pertinent content for your other content. (Hint: your most popular blog posts are probably something you want to expound upon.)
Lastly, they provide your clients with an assurance that you know what you’re talking about and that your company cares enough to provide constant content for your customers.
Make sure that your blog has calls to action, and that those calls to action follow the reader. The best way to do this is to have a contact form in the right hand margin or to have a newsletter sign up tab in the bottom right corner of the blog.
Now that you have your blog in place and it has a strong conversion optimized message, you’ll want to ensure that you fill it with useful content. No one wants to read your press release. Seriously, I’ve sent press releases to my mother about my company and she never even opened them. All I got was a, “that’s nice sweetie” email in response. So, don’t put your press releases on your blog.
Instead, use your blog to target the issues you know your clients are interested in. Write long form posts that give insight on how to solve a common problem. Then, as I mentioned earlier, use the traffic to these blogs to discover which issues your potential clients care about most.
All That Jazz
I don’t want to bore you with endless descriptions of types of content. So, here is a list of other techniques and pieces of content you should be using:
- Explainer Videos
- Demo Videos
- Case Studies
- Social Groups
- Q&A Webinars
- Social Media Q&A sessions (Twitter is great for this!)
One Final Note on Content
Do not, I repeat, DO NOT go cheap on your content. You can spot generic and poorly written content from a mile away. So, can your clients.
Don’t even bother with cheap content. It’s a waste of money and will end up damaging your brand more than helping it.
Now that we’ve covered how to create great lead generating content, hope on over to Section Three: The Metrics where we discuss how to properly track and measure your campaigns so that you can continue to optimize and expand on the right channels for the greatest chance of success.
Looking for more great reads? Check out these related articles:
- To Demand Gen ot to Lead Gen; That is the Question
- 4 Lead Generation Tools You Should Be Using Since Yesterday
- Improving Your B2B Lead Generation with Inbound Marketing
- Your Step-By-Step Guide to Generating More Leads for Your Company. Section Three: The Metrics
- Your Step-By-Step Guide to Generating More Leads for Your Company. Section One: The Why and How