Principles for More Engaging B2B Content
Congratulations! After years of struggling, you’ve reached the pinnacle of your industry by offering eye-opening solutions that benefit your customers’ bottom lines. With so much first-hand experience, you’ve got what it takes to be a subject matter expert. But does your website content reflect that?
Bad content is a plague that makes customers cringe. Don’t let it anywhere near your website. B2B audiences are savvier than B2C audiences. They want to be educated and informed by fresh perspectives that are authentic. If you dive deep to bring ingenious solutions that enhance value, your reward will be loyal followers who visit your site—and your business—first. Build your brand by providing authoritative content that is informational, relevant and unique. I help clients do it every day. In the EO tradition of experience-sharing, here’s what I ask my clientele:
Do readers view you as an expert? Are you positioning yourself as an expert with intimate knowledge of your product and audience? Crafting meaty, original content earns their trust. Consistently providing information that only an expert could will result in followers looking to you for advice. You’ll become their go-to resource for questions about your industry, and they’ll be more likely to endorse and share your content. Try to answer readers’ burning questions, ideally before they’re even asked.
Do you use jargon strategically? Industry-specific buzzwords help your audience feel included and respected, while also showcasing your knowledge. By speaking their language, you prove that you know them and can help their businesses thrive. It’s a fine line with jargon: Too little makes it seem like you don’t understand their world. Too much, and you’re trying too hard. Strive for a conversational tone that exudes expertise.
Are you forward-thinking? Do you stay updated on industry trends? Readers expect you to. Innovative, authentic content keeps you on the cutting edge. Your opinions reflect valuable insight that no one else has. Why shy away from topics others aren’t addressing? When you’re the first to discuss it, your voice shines more brightly.
Got data? Can you support your findings with strong data points? B2B audiences crave data. It’s ammunition they will put to good use. Whether you cite details from a case study or data mined from the industry at large, add your personal spin to it. Case studies—especially your own—provide contextual data and valuable insider information readers want, while demonstrating the capabilities of your business.
What about data-delivery methods? Do your readers prefer small snippets ideal for social media posts, or longer case studies brimming with results? How about blog posts chock-full of statistics? If you analyze your audience and deliver what they want, they’ll thank you for it.
Are you solving problems? Ditch the “fluff.” Readers want their business problems solved. Provide deeper-level information— think advanced guides instead of simple how-to’s. Get down to the nitty-gritty. Attention to detail sets you apart. A good B2B article addresses a problem, describes how it impacts their business and spotlights your unique solution.
Throughout my experiences, I’ve learned that B2B audiences are highly invested and appreciate knowledgeable enthusiasm. Building a connection with them is the key to strong content; how you speak to your audience impacts that. If you rise to their level and provide content that engages them, your customers will value your input and your brand will reflect that.
Frank Cowell is an EO San Diego member and the CEO of Elevator, a digital brand strategy firm. Frank regularly presents to organizations on topics related to branding and digital marketing. Married with four children, Frank loves to travel, surf and practice Kung Fu. Contact Frank at