If You’re Not Using Case Studies for B2B Marketing, It Might Be Time You Started

According to research, 73% of business to business marketers are now investing their efforts in creating case studies. There are lots of effective B2B marketing strategies but the great benefit of case studies is that you are able to tell a story about your company and how you solved a problem for a client or customer.

By reading your story, the potential new customer can get a better idea of what your company can do for theirs. You can’t convey this in-depth amount of information using channels like social media, unless you put it into a video, so case studies are the best option to provide all of that extra detail that will persuade a business that they need your services.

The power of case studies will vary depending on the industry that you are working in but regardless of which industry that happens to be, a customer lead will be looking for a service that you provide because they have a problem that needs solving or a need that they have. This is why case studies tend to be structured in a way that describes: The Problem; The Solution: The Results.

Writing about the problem

As an example, their problem could be that the company is spending too much time dealing with email enquiries. A software development company could solve their problem by creating a chatbot for the company’s website that answers some of the more common questions that they receive all of the time. So, instead of receiving 50 emails per day, the emails were reduced by 40 of those emails being answered automatically by the chatbot instead.

The case study would be able to talk through the problem in terms of how many hours per week were being spent on answering these emails, even including the impact such as taking on extra staff, or stopping employees from being able to concentrate on other tasks that will generate leads.

Outlining the solution and results

The case study then outlines the exact way that the problem was resolved and finishes with the results, which should be metric, wherever possible. For example, reduced 10 hours of work per week, or saved £xxx in salary per annum for staff to deal with the enquiries. In this section you want to be trying to show why your company is the best one for the job, rather than one of your competitors. Numbers and facts really do help to add more weight to your story.

How long should a case study be?

The length of a case study is usually around the 750 to 1000 word mark, you need to get enough detail in, without boring the reader with too much detail! Providing a story about your business helps you to build credibility and give a better understanding of what services your company provides. The other factor that makes case studies so good for B2B marketing is that stories are more memorable than just a page of text about a company.

If you haven’t already considered adding case studies to your marketing strategy, it could be the missing part of the jigsaw to help you to convert more leads.

Should You Be Using Infographics for Your B2B Marketing?

When you are developing your B2B marketing strategy, there might be several strategies that you usually dismiss because you think that you don’t have the time, or the skills, or the need to successfully deliver that type of strategy. One of the strategies that people are often reluctant to try is infographics because they are worried about the design element of creating this type of content.

However, infographics are a very effective form of B2B marketing if you have the budget or the tools and creativity to get it right. High quality infographics work well because they are more engaging than most other content types, also if you manage to think of a really useful set of information to convey via an infographic, people will share it and help to grow your reach.

Whilst it isn’t a good idea to start using infographics for all of your marketing content, and it would be pretty difficult to put all those kinds of content into an infographic, using them sporadically, when you have the right type of information that will fit nicely into an infographic is ideal.

Where to start when creating an infographic?

The first part of the creation journey is to identify some data that can be easily presented in the form of an infographic. You don’t want to try and put too much data into the image and make it too distracting, so refine the key parts of information that you want to use. Statistical analysis that you often see content marketing companies sharing through infographics are a good example of effective ways of creating infographics e.g. 80% of all online content will be video by 2021.

Survey results are also perfect for building into an infographic e.g. 70% of consumers said they would rather buy online than buy the product in a store. So, once you have the right data to present in an infographic, you have done most of the hard work. Remember, the data has to be useful for people, don’t just create infographics for the sake of designing a pretty image.

Designing the infographic

This is the bit that can often put people off because they think they need to have advanced design skills to be able to create attractive infographics. There are two different approaches to take with this, the first one and the easiest is to hire a freelance graphic designer to do the work for you. If you just give them the data, they can usually design a quick infographic for a reasonable price that looks really professional.

The other option is to try designing it yourself, now if you a pretty decent graphic designer with the right software then you are good to go. If you have no design experience or software, don’t worry because there are free tools that you can use that will help you to create an infographic of a pretty good level of quality. Canva.com is one such free tool that provides templates and images that you can incorporate into your infographic. There are lots of premium images and features within Canva but you can still do a good job just utilizing the free features.

Once you have designed your infographic, you simply need to share it with the world, so whether that is through LinkedIn or whatever channel you want to use to share the content, you have just created and shared your infographic and should start to see engagement with it.

8 Stats That Show Why Content Marketing is the Most Important Marketing Strategy

There are many different types of marketing that have proven to be successful over recent years but what is effective one year, might die a death the next, so it is important to stay up to date with the latest trends and most effective marketing methods.

Content marketing is certainly not a new trend but changes in consumer behavior, advances in technology and updates to data privacy regulations, for example, can influence the effectiveness of a certain type of marketing.

Here are some statistics that add weight to the argument that you should be investing in content marketing over any other channels.

  1. Content marketing costs 62% less than outbound marketing but generates 3x as many leads

Now that is a powerful stat and as marketers, we are constantly looking for the lowest cost method to generate the most leads. Traditional marketing methods such as direct mail, and media advertising are expensive and take a lot of time and effort to deliver compared to content marketing.

  1. Over 200 million people use ad blockers

Let’s face it, most people find ads annoying and it is no surprise that a huge number of people have ad blocking software to stop them from being pestered with constant ads.

  1. Content marketing leaders achieve 7.8x more traffic than the rest

Marketing guru Neil Patel shared his insights on how successful content marketing leaders are compared to their competitors. Developing compelling content that adds high value to the reader is priceless.

  1. Content drives brand recall = increased engagement

Personalized content helps to make a consumer remember a brand, engaging with the company on a deeper level. According to an IBM Digital Experience Survey, 56% of marketing professionals believe that personalized content drives higher engagement rates.

  1. 73% of major organizations hire a content marketing strategy manager/professional

More and more companies have now realized the value of hiring a content marketing expert, to ensure that they are prioritizing this type of marketing, as they now understand how profitable it is. This also allows the company to identify the best technology and platforms to use for the most effective types of content marketing.

  1. For every $1 spent, email gives back $38 in ROI

According to CampaignMonitor, for every $1 that is spent on email marketing strategy, it is able to earn $38 back in ROI. By developing personalized and targeted emails, conversion rates are much higher than other channels.

  1. 88% of B2B marketers use content marketing

The huge majority of B2B marketers invest in their content marketing, as a vital part of their marketing strategy. Content marketing also gives more sustainable value than other marketing options.

  1. Many marketers will use over 13 content marketing tactics

Using the full range of content marketing tactics generates greater results than focusing on just one or two, which is evident by so many marketers choosing to deploy varied and diverse channels.

These eight statistics really underline the importance of content marketing, how effective it can be and why marketers include it as the staple of their marketing strategies.

How to Audit Your Content to Drive More Organic Traffic to Your Website

When you set up a new website and spend lots of time and effort getting the content right, there is one more important thing that you need to consider – auditing your website on a regular basis. Having fresh, topical content shows that your business is up to date with the current trends and information and positions you as a company with authority in your area of expertise.

Here are some tips on how to perform high quality audits on your content, which will enable you to get better organic traffic to your website:

Using Google Analytics

To start with you should have Google Analytics running on your blog/website, and you want to have a look at the data from the last year or more, so go to the following:

Behaviour > Site content > All pages

Then update the date range to get at least the last 12 months of data. You will see all of your traffic data for that period and you can now export the data in a spreadsheet to analyse it in more detail.

As well as looking at the traffic, there are metrics such as whether pages/blogs have any backlinks, which would usually indicate the content is worthwhile keeping. To find out whether there are any backlinks, you can use tools from Ahrefs or Majestic.

Create your audit spreadsheet

Sort your posts from highest traffic to lower traffic and this is the beginning of the audit process. It is a good idea to add additional columns to your spreadsheet to ensure you are regularly auditing the most important factors that will help you to decide the next steps.

The key actions and considerations are:

  • Is the post getting consistent traffic?
  • Does the post receive seasonal spikes in traffic? (you may need to put the date range further back for this)
  • Which topics/themes/categories are the most popular?
  • Are there any posts that receive no hits at all?

You will also need to look at the pages to check for issues that require fixing or updating as they can impact the quality of your content, including:

  • Any content that is out of date/incorrect information
  • Broken or slow loading images
  • Formatting that looks messy/strange
  • Any links that are broken

Running through each of these audit actions will then give you the basis to make a decision on whether you will keep the content, delete it, or do something different with it.

In the last column on your spreadsheet you should indicate whether to:

  1. Keep the content as it is (as it is working well and getting good traffic)
  2. Keep it but update it or repurpose it to make it more relevant and current
  3. Delete it completely (getting very little or no traffic)
  4. Delete it and redirect to a post that is more useful

Once you have completed this last exercise, you can perform the required actions and your website/blog will be geared up to benefit from more organic traffic. It will also give you a much better idea of what type of content is working well, so that you can continue to create similarly popular content going forward.