If you’re looking to make a greater impact and reach, you need to get on the Content Marketing train now—it is one of the most effective strategies marketers use today! According to research conducted by MarketingProfs and the Content Marketing Institute, 88% of B2B (business-to-business) and 76% of B2C (business-to-consumer) marketers are using content marketing as a key strategy. But hold on…businesses and consumers don’t have the same goals and mindsets, right? A single person is not going to have the same objective as an entire business, so you need to be aware of your audience and be intentional about the content you offer them.
With that in mind, let’s compare the essential differences between content marketing for B2B v. B2C.
Defining Your Target Audience
First, determine and understand your target audience and take into account the fact that a B2B customer will be very different from a B2C consumer. The B2B customer is seeking a product or service that adds value to their business—the decisions they make will affect both the business and their career, so they will be more cautious. The B2C consumer is seeking personal fulfillment, so the risks of an “incorrect” choice are a much smaller priority in their minds.
Defining the Goal of Content Marketing
The content marketing goal is at the center of a content strategy. In B2B, you are aiming to get leads out of your content marketing endeavors. B2C entails creating brand awareness and building engagement around your product or service with the implication that your efforts will lead to more business.
Understanding User Intent
Researching and examining user intent will assist you in creating expert content that helps audiences find what they are looking for. One common method includes determining the search keywords used in your industry. For B2B content marketing, you need to identify the issues that your target audiences’ businesses face so that you can provide content relevant to the subject. If you’re trying to market a B2C product or service, analyze user behavior to gauge the goals of target users to learn what impacts them from an emotional standpoint.
Defining the USP
Next, develop a USP (Unique Selling Proposition)—this tells your audiences why they should buy your product or service. Once you establish your USP, build an engagement plan around it. For B2B, you may want to showcase your product or service as a viable solution that fulfills the business’s needs. However, B2C is all about satisfying a personal want or need—they probably don’t want lists of information or solutions. Keeping your audience’s interests in mind will help you form a successful point of engagement.
Construct a Content Calendar
Having a frequently updated content calendar will help you plan out when to release content and stay on track as well. A B2B calendar typically focuses on important business events, new feature releases, and product launches. It should also consider long-term efforts that aim to establish industry leadership. A B2C calendar primarily focuses on holidays, promotions, offers, and other events that the audience may relate to on a personal level. Using this calendar, marketers can plan content that engages audiences, such as contests.
Defining the Content Distribution Channels
Your content marketing plan will need to account for the key channels that the campaign is going to be run through. A B2B content plan will most likely include your company blog and website, LinkedIn, SlideShare and YouTube. A B2C plan will primarily use Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, Instagram and Pinterest.
B2B: Things to Remember
- Client Testimonials
Reading or watching stories of satisfied clients are vital for your B2B content marketing strategy because every client wants to know:
- Who are your existing clients?
- How long have they been with you?
- What services have you successfully delivered?
- How satisfied are they?
Answering these questions by posting client testimonials, stories and videos can be crucial to accumulating leads.
- Provide Solutions to Problems
Raising awareness of key product advantages and differentiations through useful content will build a positive reputation in the market, especially in areas that allow for direct engagement with your audience (i.e. Q&A forums/sites).
- Developing Subject Matter Expertise
Producing subject matter expertise such as whitepapers, infographics and product demos can help you reach relevant prospects.
B2C: Things to Remember
- Customer Engagement
Remember, a B2C customer is usually looking for personal fulfillment with your product or service, so you should generate excitement and intrigue around your product or service through sweepstakes, contests and quizzes.
B2C content marketing is all about building a community of loyal fans and followers who are eager to associate with your brand and talk about it with peers. Content that connects with these people will help you gain likes, shares and more followers.
- Integrated Efforts
B2C content marketing is fantastic for linking offline and online marketing avenues. You can host offline events to create buzz around a product, and that event, in turn, can be promoted on social channels to expand campaign reach.
Do you need helping coming up with a B2B or B2C marketing plan? We can help, so give us a call!
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