Creating customer-centric content day after day is doable in a bare bones kind of way, but does your content have a clear purpose? Does it offer a fresh and engaging perspective that’s relevant to your customers? Does it define the customer journey clearly in order to increase engagement?
If you answered yes to these questions, congrats! You’re on your way to creating awesome customer-centric content.
If you answered no or “I don’t know” to any of these questions, you’re in the right place. Your B2B organization may be in the throes of content chaos, making it hard to provide the information clients need in order to buy from you and not your competitor.
First things first: don’t freak out if you’re feeling the burn of content friction! Most marketing teams start out with the best intentions to create engaging content, but content chaos bogs them down. Not only is it a common trap, it’s also one of the biggest challenges plaguing B2B organizations all over the world.
Why? Marketing teams and departments are still working in a “silo” mentality, not collaborating with other teams within the company to clearly map a cohesive customer journey. And the journey is what customers value most. In fact, “maximizing satisfaction with customer journeys has the potential to increase customer satisfaction by 20% but also lift revenue by up to 15%.”
Here are five tips for creating customer-centric content that gives clients exactly what they’re looking for while also helping teams collaborate more effectively to build a clear, consistent customer experience.
1. Meet with Internal Content Stakeholders to Discover and Clarify Client Pain Points and Behaviors
Take insights from past customer transactions. Ask for insider tips from internal departments. Observe how people follow a path to purchase online or through sales calls. What pain points did they have? How did they wander through the website, connect with a sales rep, or research offerings?
“Your prospects are searching based on pain points, needs, desires. They are looking for solutions they don’t yet know exist. The better you can speak your prospect’s language, the better you will be able to align your content with prospect intent.”—Matt Heinz, President, Heinz Marketing Inc.
When marketing teams get into the mind of a customer and follow the potential paths they may take from first interest to final purchase, you can reverse-engineer the “treasure map.” The key is to consider all possibilities and engage every department to create consistent, comprehensive customer-centric content.
2. Map Content Objectives for Each Stage in the Buyer’s Journey
Once it’s clear exactly what potential clients need at a certain stage in the buyer’s journey, build specific content to support those needs. By filling information gaps with clear, useful content, potential clients and returning ones can come to an educated purchase decision faster, and sales can reduce conversion time.
Mapping content objectives also turns your company into a united sales force, with each team taking ownership of and providing specialized expertise for their contribution to the buyer’s journey.
The added bonus? Organized content that’s well crafted, easy to locate, and relevant to a specific sales stage.
Oh, and don’t forget to a) sprinkle in strategic, SEO-friendly keywords that customers would use to do research on the topic, and b) track your content’s conversion rates.
3. Be “Buyer-Aware”
The easiest way to reach your target market is to know who they are, right down to the nitty-gritty details.
B2B organizations need to connect with a variety of influencers to complete a sale and maintain a solid customer base, which requires creating customer-centric content that’s relatable to every person in the purchase process.
Take time to build and flesh out buyer personas based on past purchases or online customer engagement stats. This type of customer insight will go a long way toward developing marketing strategies with staying power and content that resonates.
4. Use Templates to Streamline Customer Content and Instill Confidence
Need to simplify content development and sharing? Want to look professional and help internal departments save time on content management?
Make templates your new best friend.
When a customer has a different content experience in each step along the buyer’s journey, it gives them a reason to look elsewhere. Templates provide a familiar interface that demonstrates clarity and provides a consistent brand message, whether materials are shared on a company website or passed between people.
RELATED CONTENT: 8 Simple Marketing Templates for Content Planning
5. Research Customer Preferences for Content Types and Delivery Tools
A big part of content engagement depends on the content preferences of your target market. Do buyers prefer straightforward messaging shared in short educational videos? Or do in-depth case studies get more traction? Would a Twitter chat with company execs provide a sense of community with customers, or do online campaigns centered around a specific hashtag help build connection and rapport?
This step does require a bit of data crunching and observation, but tracking user data can provide insight into how to create customer-centric content that forms a consistent customer journey.
Add a little extra spark to well-crafted content by automating the delivery through a content management system (CMS) that enables a more personalized touch.
Building compelling content that enables potential clients to clearly understand how to start on the buyer’s journey and follow it easily from any starting point is a real triumph. Time to get started on creating customer-centric content that educates as well as it converts!