Originally published by MarketingProfs
I write whitepapers for a living. Thanks to my background in engineering, I typically handle high-tech content for complex products and services. But in working with clients I can tell you that even the most complex material can be fleshed out in simple ways to produce amazing whitepapers. Here are my top 10 ideas that I share with clients to harvest information so I can quickly write high-quality whitepapers that engage their target audience.
Does every time you need to write a new blog post or put out a social post feel like you’re trying to pull ideas out of an empty well? If so, you’re not alone. That said, writing marketing content does not need to be this difficult. The key is to come up with long term campaign ideas just once a year so that you can remove the painful process of frequent ideation while saving yourself a ton of time. In this article I’ll provide ideas and concepts that you can use to take the headache out of generating blog and social media content.
I work with a lot of B2B tech startups helping them to get their go-to-market messaging and marketing strategy figured out. I never cease to be shocked when CEOs ask me about hiring a social media marketer as a freelance or full time role. Somehow social media has become the hope of these founders. That a young college grad will come in and get their message out in social media and their target buyers will just flock to their website.
Unfortunately, this is absolutely the wrong approach. I’m not saying that social media isn’t worth your time, but I am saying there is a much more effective way that will save you money and get you better results.
Originally published in MarketingProfs on 4/8/20
What is a Compelling Reason to Buy
A Compelling Reason to Buy is NOT an elevator pitch (although it should be). Sales knows an elevator pitch as explaining what the product does. A Compelling Reason to Buy explains the benefit to the target audience that they will realize with your product. And just as the name implies, it is a much more compelling way to capture interest.
The concepts behind a Compelling Reason to Buy can be found in Geoffrey Moore’s product development and marketing standard, Crossing the Chasm. In working with companies from startups that need go-to-market messaging to enterprises that have lost their focus, I’ve simplified the concepts to create an easy exercise that I use with clients. This exercise ensures that any messaging I create is going to help capture the attention of the target audience.
I make my living helping B2B technology companies with messaging, strategy and writing a whole bunch of marketing content. That means I have multiple client projects and content pieces in progress at one time. Here are five free tips for keeping my sanity while creating high quality content.
Chances are good that you have lots of thought leaders within your company that have a wealth of great stories and knowledge to help make your content marketing efforts soar. Thought leaders can be engineers, product managers, product marketers or anyone who works with customers (see more ideas here).
However, if you ask a thought leader to provide content and to write it themselves, it will rarely get done. They will always have priorities that are higher than helping marketing. Even if they have good intentions, it is difficult for them to clear their schedule to have a continuous block of time to write. And if you do get content, it likely isn’t in a format ready for the target audience. Instead of waiting for a miracle, here is a simple way to extract content from these thought leaders without causing pain for you or for them.
The shift toward revenue as a marketing objective has been happening for years. Being responsible for only leads leaves zero incentive for making sure they are high quality. Businesses have started to realize this and continue to move the goal line from leads to qualified leads to qualified accounts and eventually revenue.
So if marketing is going to share a revenue goal with sales, it is now of the utmost importance that marketing do what it can to help sales close those qualified accounts. Unfortunately, this is the biggest gap in content marketing responsibility and output. This may fall to product marketing or even a dedicated sales enablement team. But most organizations don’t have those extra resources and content marketers need to step up.
You might have a board member that swears by the “dialing for dollars” approach or a former enterprise executive that wants to go big with broad inbound marketing. But the reality for any startup or emerging technology is a harsh one – very little budget and very little runway. You’ve got to take on a strategy that makes efficient use of spend and can be counted on for success. Enter ABM — Account Based Marketing.
Whitepapers are a lot of work. Which is why it is incredibly disheartening when they underperform. The good news is that the common issues with whitepapers can be easily fixed by modifying your approach at the start of the project. Read on for the most common mistakes I see during client audits and my simple tips to fix them.
As a content lead, you care about the quality of content that your team is releasing to the wild. You likely spend a great deal of your time planning content strategy and brainstorming themes. You make sure that everyone knows their role in the orchestration of the content engine. But is auditing a part of your role? If you truly want to improve content performance, you may need to take a closer look at your content—and I don’t mean your assets.