A new year is around the corner. Are you ready to take your B2B content to the next level?
The Tendo team spotlights key trends and best practices that should be top of mind for content strategists and marketers. Read on for content guidance—across eight main categories—to help you stand out from the crowd and exceed your goals in 2023.
Revisit Brand Journalism
Karla Spormann, Founder and CEO
“Brand journalism will be more relevant in 2023 than it ever was. B2B audiences are fatigued with the constant bombardment of performance-driven content. B2B brands have an unparalleled opportunity to really step outside of selling mode and speak to some of the values, principles, and guideposts that really support what the brand stands for. Brand journalism is real storytelling about your brand, not storytelling that is hitting you over the head with product information.”
Shift to Omnichannel Content Experiences
Lindy Roux, EVP and Partner
“In 2023, there’s going to be a big shift to true omnichannel content experiences. There will be a lot more focus on being consistent across different channels in multichannel experiences.
“Today, users are interacting with content across so many different platforms and channels, such as web, chat, voice, and more. There are just so many places that users are now finding brands and interacting with them, and that requires a truly omnichannel experience that is orchestrated across these different platforms.”
Emphasize Privacy-First Marketing
Kim Celestre, VP of Content Marketing
“In 2023, I anticipate that we will continue to hear a lot about the impact of expanding privacy laws and policies on B2B digital and content marketers. While these laws were enacted to protect the consumer, B2B businesses must pay attention as well.
“These regulatory changes present an opportunity for B2B brands to differentiate their content marketing efforts by adopting a privacy-first approach. First, B2B brands will have to think about ways to help their marketing team collect zero-party data in addition to first-party data.
“Zero-party data and first-party data are the dynamic duo of trust building. Your objective with privacy-first content marketing is to develop a virtuous cycle of trust by creating content that is engaging and relevant, which will build your customer’s trust with your brand and increase their willingness to share their information. In turn, this new customer information facilitates your brand’s ability to provide deeper personalization and ultimately deliver more value to them over time.”
Scale Your Content Production
Zach Edling, VP of Account Services
“In 2023, content marketers must scale or fail. By ‘scale,’ I mean the ability to accelerate content production on demand. To meet buyer demand for content, brands need to foster a self-guided purchase process, which means having the right content for the right audience at the right time. At the same time, brands are often short on time, resources, and talent needed to accelerate content production efficiently and effectively.
“If you want to scale content development, start by being really clear about why you want to scale content development. If your goals are not clear, you can easily slip into the habit of creating random acts of content.
Next, get really clear on who you are trying to reach with your content efforts. Your audience is bombarded with marketing messages. Find out what they care about and focus your content development around those careabouts. Quality, not quantity, is what you should really try to scale.”
Evolve to Micro-Personalization
John Dorsey, Director Content Operations and Analytics
“Content strategists should think about expanding from traditional personalization to micro-personalization. With traditional personalization, you use attributes you’ve already collected about a web visitor, for example first name, or industry focus. With micro-personalization, you tie those attributes together with everything else you know about them, such as their browsing behavior, firmographic traits, or metrics from previous visits or other channels.
“For example, if someone visited your site previously, and demonstrated a specific interest—perhaps by industry, or buyer’s journey stage—then you could highlight more of that content on entry pages or design a newsletter format to serve up more of the content they’ve expressed interest in.
“As a first step toward micro-personalization, identify and connect your existing data silos. Different teams may collect data from multiple channels or departments, but not necessarily bring it together into one complete picture. Bring the data together and use it to analyze your visitors’ behaviors. Then you can detect patterns and determine the best way to provide a micro-personalized experience.”
Tailor Your SEO Strategy for B2B
Amanda Haxton, Director Account Services
“B2B content marketers need to shift away from SEO tactics that traditionally worked for B2C brands. In 2023, I think we will start to see a real division in SEO strategies between B2B and B2C. One of the big shifts in mindset will be a focus on quality instead of quantity.
“B2C is focused on quantity in terms of traffic volume. But that’s not necessarily the right tactic or approach for B2B. Rather, B2B brands should look very closely at keyword and topical intent. I think that’s going to be key to improving the quality of traffic that you bring through the organic channel.
“To have a successful SEO strategy, B2B marketers must be aware of the intent that their content is targeting—whether it’s informational, navigational, commercial, or transactional intent.”
Measure Content ROI
Kourtney Kovanis, Director, Content
“Content ROI is the holy grail of content marketing measurement. Unfortunately, it can get tricky. It’s the old, ‘if it were easy, everyone would do it’ situation. Forty-seven percent of B2B marketers don’t measure content ROI, either because it’s too complicated or because they don’t know how.
“This is definitely an area people are struggling with, but it can be an area of growth and can set apart the most successful marketing teams. If you’re a bit overwhelmed or not sure where to start when it comes to content ROI, first try a content scorecard that helps you better understand your content both qualitatively and quantitatively. Once you have a baseline, you can move to a more sophisticated ROI model that is tied to revenue.”
Differentiate Use Cases vs. Case Studies
Lisa Park, Content Strategy Lead
“This will be the year when use cases are no longer confused with case studies. The confusion is all too common, but here are the definitions: Case studies are real-world stories about how a customer successfully used a product or solution to achieve a goal. Use cases are different: They center on the user by introducing a key pain point, customer type, or scenario, and then frame the solution based on the customer’s goals and careabouts.
“With customers increasingly looking for specific solutions to their company’s problems—and searching online with that kind of specificity (employing more detailed, long-tail search terms and phrases)—it’s more vital than ever that content teams serve up content that solves for these specific problems.”
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