Countless B2B companies understand the importance of SEO yet still struggle to outrank their competition. Despite the pivotal role that SEO plays in the modern marketplace, many business owners and marketing leads don’t know the crucial steps they have to take to expand their audience and capture their interest. The only surefire way to create effective B2B content marketing is with a reliable checklist.
Looking to supercharge your search results? Review this 13-point checklist to guarantee you have an effective B2B content marketing strategy.
1. Review & Update Your Keyword Research
You don’t need to hire a content marketing consultant to know good keyword research is the difference between successful search engine optimization and digital irrelevance. Nevertheless, many B2B companies consistently underinvest in keyword research and they often fail to consider what keywords the competition is using. Worse yet, they do not distinguish keywords that excel in advertising and keywords that perform better in content marketing.
Performing an SEO audit on your competitors and determining what keywords are already attracting traffic should be a top priority for any B2B company and it should play a major role in your keyword strategy to create effective B2B content marketing.
2. Conduct a Synergy Check
Topics that clash with the prevailing strategy your company pursues will not only fail to increase interest in your content, it harms your B2B company’s reputation as an authority on the subject. For effective B2B content marketing, your target audience must receive a consistent and clear message. Take the time to perform a synergy check whenever you consider approaching a new topic to ensure it matches with the content you’ve created beforehand. Ask how your current topic fits into the broader content marketing strategy – if the topic and the broader strategy aren’t a fit, determine which needs to change to ensure the overall success of your content marketing strategy.
Effective B2B content marketing can only occur when synergy exists between the different moving parts of your plan.
3. Evaluate the Competition
It’s impossible to master effective B2B content marketing without regularly evaluating the competition. Evaluating your competition doesn’t stop with what keywords they are targeting. Recognizing that a competitor is excelling or faltering in an area of their content strategy provides your business with an opportunity to reshape its content strategy. Start by assessing the work of your competitors and identifying which topics you can cover more successfully than them.
Hiring experienced B2B content marketing specialists can increase the thoroughness of your competitive evaluation and reduce the time needed to complete the evaluation. Contact Bold Entity for help creating and complementing an effective B2B content marketing strategy.
4. Are You Providing Value for Your Audience
The next step in ensuring effective B2B content marketing and SEO is assessing how valuable your content is to your target audience. Readers will only stick around if they’re convinced your content has the answers and advice they need to make their company more effective and successful. B2B content that fails to generate value for the target audience performs poorly and diminishes your content marketing effectiveness. Always frame your B2B content marketing efforts from the perspective of your prospects and the information they need to be more successful.
Identifying the topics most interesting to your target audience is a powerful way to bolster your search performance and increase website traffic.
5. Is Your Content Authoritative
Companies cultivating trust with a target audience must ask whether their content appears authoritative in the eyes of readers. The use of updated facts, statistics, and quotes from recognizable experts will ensure that readers believe in the authenticity of your content and that your B2B company is an authority in their industry. Enlisting the help of industry thought leaders can help build your target audience’s trust in your content. Collaborating with industry influencers and non-competitive companies in the same industry is a powerful tool for building effective B2B content marketing.
6. How Readable Is Your Content
Many B2B companies spend money on SEO without generating meaningful results. Sometimes even content that is valuable to your B2B prospects fails to perform. In that instance, a common culprit is readability. Content readability can be reduced by poor grammar, inconsistent tone, being too boring, even using long sections of uninterrupted text. Even valuable information if it’s hard to read will keep all but the most-determined readers from engaging with your B2B content.
7. Is Your Content Visually Appealing
Having the most interesting content around doesn’t mean much if the page is ugly and difficult to navigate. Effective B2B content marketing means putting effort into making sure your content is both readable and aesthetically pleading. The use of clean, consistent formatting that makes the text easy to read and digest, plus interesting visuals in the form of videos, images, and data visualization that complement your content goes a long way to engaging readers and keeping them on your website longer.
Always remember that effective B2B content marketing is both informative and attractive. Content which looks professionally designed appears more authoritative and trustworthy than poorly assembled web pages or shoddy advertisements.
8. Interlink Your Content
One of the basic secrets to creating an effective B2B content marketing strategy is to make sure the high-value content pieces you create aren’t isolated. Producing individual blog articles isn’t enough. Sure, great content will bring someone to the page and engage them, but once they’re finished they will exit the website. By adding links into your content to complementary content on your website, you can create a content “rabbit hole,” where a reader will open a link to another piece of content, where they open a link to another piece of content, so on and so forth.
Another effective B2B content marketing strategy is to create pillar pages for major content topics. These pages act as a landing page for all the content you produce around a content topic and are used as a repository for linking all the related content pieces you’ve created on the subject. Pillar pages improve user experience and SEO for your website and content marketing efforts.
9. Use a Powerful and Provocative Headline
More readers read the headline of your content piece than the piece itself. A good headline needs to generate interest so they will click to read the content. As advertisers, we are well aware of the importance of headlines, but you needn’t take our word for it. According to the Washington Post, most readers only read the headlines when consuming news and information. An effective B2B content marketing piece can be stopped cold by a bad headline. Ask yourself whether your page titles and blog headlines are enticing enough. Including the most sensational news upfront is a great way to catch a reader’s eye. For more information on writing good headlines, see our blog on writing good subject lines for email marketing.
10. Include & Measure Call-to-Actions
Effective B2B content marketing doesn’t create content for the sake of content. Your B2B content’s purpose is to show your company as a trusted name in your industry, help prospects identify their problems and potential solutions, and show how your company’s offerings can help them be successful. For maximum effectiveness, each piece of content you create should have a stirring call-to-action (CTA) that entices a prospect to move down the marketing funnel towards conversion.
Review your entire content marketing library to ensure readers are consistently and clearly directed towards their next step in the buyer’s journey. Measure your CTA effectiveness across all your content to develop a benchmark for CTA performance and update underperforming content with new to boost performance.
11. Review Your On-page SEO
On-page SEO refers to the optimization of specific elements on each of your website’s content pieces to improve their ranking on Google Search Engine Result Pages (SERP). For WordPress websites, plugins like YoastSEO or All-in-One SEO can provide a framework for performing on-page SEO for your B2B content pieces.
Review your website to avoid duplicate content and improving your page title, headers, alt-tags, and meta descriptions will all help your content perform better and put you on the path to effective B2B content marketing.
12. Promote Your Content
Publishing new content is only part of an effective B2B content marketing strategy. Don’t rely on Google’s indexing or people visiting your website to find your new content. You need to promote your content to help prospects find it. For best results, promote your content on social media early and often. Mixing it into your existing social media plan aggressively, you can potentially promote your content piece the day of publishing, the day after, week after, two weeks after, month after, two months after, and continue occasionally promoting it. Also make sure to email your subscribers about new content pieces.
Another part of effective B2B content marketing is adding simple social media share features to your website content. Make it easy for readers to share your content and be sure to ask your social media followers and email subscribers to forward and share the content. good promotional material is a necessary facet of effective B2B content marketing.
13. Measure your Benchmarks
Finally, remember to create and use benchmarks to determine how much progress you’re making over time with your content marketing. Keeping track of your bounce rate, CTR, and overall time spent on your content is the best way to track whether your individual content pieces are working. It will also help you identify which ineffective measures you can stop funding in the future.
You also want to measure the overall effectiveness of your B2B content marketing strategy by reviewing KPIs like website traffic, domain authority, backlinks, and keyword rankings.
The Benefits of a Good B2B Content Marketing Checklist
A good B2B content marketing checklist helps ensure each content piece you create is relevant, engaging, and aesthetically pleasing. The checklist reduces wasted time and money on creating content that fails to bolster your online visibility and drive lead conversions. Consistent use of a content marketing checklist is a great way to enhance your B2B content marketing but still requires a broader digital marketing strategy.
Bold Entity is a B2B-focused branding and digital marketing agency that can help you develop and implement an effective digital marketing strategy to increase your brand’s online visibility and increase sales. We offer services including web design, content marketing, social media marketing, digital ad campaigns, email marketing, online reputation management, and full branding/rebranding. If you’re ready to implement effective digital marketing for your B2B brand, contact us today.