How to out-think the competition with content marketing 

Content marketing has become the default strategy for B2B lead generation.

And herein lies the problem. Everyone is in the game - no matter how competent.

It's not just that Everybody Writes, it's that they're all trying their luck with content promotion too.

Take LinkedIn. To reach some B2B audiences you can now spend north of £15 per click for paid promotion. It would be more cost-effective to send prospects a tenner in an envelope and ask them to click on your landing page.

In paid search too, the bun fight for your buyer-intent keywords is no doubt becoming a costly exercise - begging the question, does your lead acquisition cost model still make sense?

If you can't outspend, it's time to out-think

And out-thinking starts with your persona development.

1. Create a persona targeting document

Make this an operational control document for all ongoing content creation and promotion.

Map out:

Who you are talking to?

  • Demographics
  • Psychographics

What you want them to do?

  • Hard offer profile
  • Soft offer profile

How you can reach them?

  • Media profile
  • Social profile
  • Keyword profile
2. Then get knees deep in their buying cycle

Forget channels in this phase of research. Instead start to map out the answers to two questions:

  • What are your prospects thinking about?
  • Where do they go for the answers?

Here's a quick example.

The surface level demographic:

  • Chief Technology Officer
  • Manufacturing business
  • £500m+ turnover

The deeper profile:

  • Likely to be interested in 'SAP technology'. So how about targeting by skills on LinkedIn?

This little bit of out-thinking will lower your cost-per-click and could be more profitable in the long-term.

On Facebook too, 'SAP SE' enables interest targeting - at roughly a 90% lower cost than a LinkedIn sponsored update.

Facebook isn't as accurate as LinkedIn, but some quick fire tests will soon tell you if you've found a profitable corner of the internet.

Here's another example.

The surface level demographic:

  • SME business owner

The deeper profile:

  • 'Looking to scale up'

It’s possible to target over 100,000 people in the UK with the title, ‘CEO’ on Facebook.

But how many of them are looking to scale their businesses?

This is where experimenting with interests can work.

  • Books: ‘Good to Great’ [22,270]
  • Known area of study: ‘MBA’ [22,000]
  • Behaviours: ‘Early Technology Adopters’ [5m]
  • Interests: ‘Leadership Development’ [8,900]

Paid Twitter advertising can also produce the goods on this audience with a little extra thought:

Who are business owners looking to scale likely to follow? Who else is likely to be targeting them?

  • @GrantThornton
  • @Crowdcube
  • @FundingCircleUK?

Why not try a Twitter ‘follower’ campaign, to reach your target persona by piggybacking others in their ecosystem?

The Pay-off

Your reward for taking the time out to out-think the competition?

A lower cost of acquisition – meaning more money in your budget to test other channels.

Do you need a more sustainable pipeline?

Open to new approaches for lead generation and sales enablement?

Explore Contentology programmes

We use cookies to ensure you have the best experience on our website. Privacy Policy.