Talk about using marketing to boost company growth, and you'll end up discussing things like growth hacking and running strategic outreach campaigns. Content marketing is thought of as a slow and steady approach to growing your brand's footprint. However, can it be used as a part of your growth strategy?
When it comes to content and B2B inbound marketing, the usual approach is to build a hub and steadily post articles on there until traffic begins appearing in meaningful numbers. Naturally, this is a slow process, and in the interim, most companies go down the paid ads route.
The thought process behind this is that the ROI on paid ads is easy to measure, and a convenient number can be determined to reflect growth. However, the problem with paid ads is that they're an interruptive experience.
Your prospect needs to change their behavior and take action to interact with your product. One of the reasons content and inbound marketing is so successful is that it invites prospects into your funnel instead of trying to shove them into it.
So, is it possible to combine the advantages of an inbound strategy with the ones that fast growth gives you? Can you tailor a growth-oriented content strategy? Here are two broad ways of doing this.
B2C types know all about influencers and use them routinely. However, B2B marketers are still coming to terms with what influencer marketing in their business entails. Most influencer participation occurs through events and brand ambassador relationships.
The statistics are compelling. Top Rank Marketing's State of B2B Influencer Marketing Research Report indicates that 90% of B2B companies expect their budget for influencer marketing to increase or stay the same in the next 12 months.
Influencer marketing works well because it allows you to quickly access your audience, without having to guess where they are.
The key to great B2B influencer marketing is having the right skills and knowledge in-house to take advantage of it. Choosing the right influencer often makes or breaks a company's strategy.
Influencer marketing in B2B isn't about asking someone to @ you in their Tweets or asking them for a shoutout.
You need to develop a coherent campaign and add value. One of the best ways to do this is to author a study or a report with someone in the industry. Doing this allows you to leverage their traffic and reputation and adds value to the conversation.
Some brands choose to run micro targeted paid ads to get in front of the right people or publications. Another approach is to develop lead nurturing campaigns and bring influencers onto your side.
Whichever approach you choose, creating content via influencer marketing is a great way to boost your traffic and growth numbers.
Content Syndication and Thought Leadership
Thought leadership is a great way to build credibility (no surprise there.) However, you can use it to boost your growth marketing efforts. The trick is to identify publications that are the most relevant for you and to target them repeatedly, with a high volume of quality content.
Many B2B companies fumble their thought leadership strategy by targeting the wrong publications. An easy way to narrow down the publications you ought to target is to use Google's display forecasting tool within Google Ads.
If you ever used Google Display Planner (GDP) previously, well, this is its new avatar. A few years ago, Google decided to fold GDP into the display ad campaign creation process.
You'll need to create a campaign to use this tool. You don't have to run a campaign. Enter your target keywords and navigate your way forward to the display forecasting section. Here's where Google gives you the projected CTR and impressions of target websites.
The greater the impressions Google estimates your dummy ad will receive, the better the potential publication fit. As long as you've used the right keywords, you'll receive a relevant list of publications that you can target.
It beats going into Google and typing " niche_name write for us" or some such search string.
Content syndication on popular niche-relevant blogs is a central part of a thought leadership strategy. Produce more pieces of content and repeatedly target the publications in your niche. Quality is the key here, it's not as if you can bombard your way into these places.
Repurposing your existing content and refining existing content for related publications is a great way to generate multiple pieces from a single theme.
Let Content Power Your Growth
Content isn't often thought of in the same breath as growth marketing, but there are ways to use the power of inbound marketing to boost growth.
A carefully planned growth-oriented content strategy will organically boost your presence and cost you less than paid outbound campaigns.