With online marketing being highly measurable, it only makes sense to examine the factors that contribute to an increased audience engagement. Some of the basic ones include user demographics, location and time of day, but these are just a start for planning a successful content strategy.
Namely, in the era of mass content production and distribution, B2B marketers need to know as much as possible about their audiences' preferences, interests and reading behavior. Although not as tangible as the metrics mentioned above, these play a critical role in producing and distributing content that really engages.
The nature of engagements
Regardless of the marketing channel used, engagements heavily rely on the approach to content creation. Historically, a regular production of web content has been seen as a basis for a successful audience engagement. Yet, the practice shows that the strategic approach to this process brings much better results.
As pointed out by different studies, the online audience expects different forms of content on each of the online channels they use, which is why marketers need to work with multiple content forms. Some of these are blog posts, press releases, emails and visual content, all of which need to be made less promotional and more relevant to the target audience.
However, even though most marketers realize the importance of producing multiple content forms, most of them fail to make them truly engaging. This was confirmed by various studies such as CMI's 2014 B2B Content Marketing report, which revealed that engaging content production is one of the top challenges for 47% of survey respondents. Furthermore, Forrester study revealed that most B2B marketers fail to engage their audience mainly because their content is revolving around the company or product, and not about providing the actual information for the user.
Therefore, marketers need to rethink their content strategies in order to engage their target audiences across all the relevant channels and this is only possible if they take into consideration people's preferences. They need to do some math before starting to produce different forms of content and make sure they understand how the audience uses specific online channels what types of content typically work best on each of them.
Content creation challenge
The content creation usually is in the focus of the whole content marketing strategy, but it often comes down to rewriting or reusing the old pieces of text without offering a new insight. Such pieces are less likely to drive engagements, as opposed to pieces that are created specifically for a certain distribution channel.
For example, white papers should not be promoted the same way as infographics, nor should social media posts be written like a promo offer. Instead, it is important to get creative, present the information in a clear form, use lots of visuals and, most importantly, personalize as much as possible. Some of the key techniques for producing engaging content are gathered by the team at Four Dots SEO and suggest experimenting with different forms of content based on efficiency. For example, social media content should be scannable and entertaining, while emails should use all the available data on a person's online behavior to deliver personalized experience.
Essentially, each of the online channels requires a specific approach and B2B content needs to be created in accordance with them. One thing, however, remains relevant for all of them - without offering the information the user actually seeks for, the results won't come.