Content marketing: unlock the secrets to successful lead generation
Using content to generate the right leads.
Returning customers, recurring revenue, and positive media coverage – these are three things a B2B brand never gets tired of. Or any brand for that matter. But at the base of it all, are leads.
Let’s never underestimate the importance of leads. The more leads you generate, the more likely that one of them will become an opportunity. And if we check the glossary of marketing jargon on your behalf, we can tell you that an ‘opportunity’ is a lead who is ready to engage with your sales team. They know your brand has a solution that is of use to them, and they have the budget to pay for it.
But before opportunities become, well, just that, they start life at the top of the marketing funnel as leads.
Leads are your bread and butter, so it’s vital you acquire them and continue to acquire them. The next inevitable question perhaps then, is how?
Two words: content marketing.
What is content marketing?
Leads are only human beings, and like all human beings, they require nurturing. This is what content marketing does: it nurtures leads. Many B2B marketers have found content marketing to be one of the most effective ways to obtain and nurture leads.
It is a type of strategy that involves creating and promoting content to entice and engage a particular audience. Crucially, this content shouldn’t be designed to sell, at least not straightaway. Its primary objective should be to engage. But to engage an audience, you need to really know that audience.
This is one of the many secrets to successful lead generation: knowing who your audience – or more specifically, persona – is. If you don’t know your audience, you won’t be able to create content that truly engages them.
But content marketing goes further. It’s not enough to just engage a lead (a member of your target audience) at the top of the marketing funnel. There’s more heavy lifting involved. You need to continue to feed them valuable, highly relevant content specific to each stage of the funnel as you move (nurture) them towards your heroic sales team, who you hope will close out the deal.
How to generate leads through content marketing
Content marketing can feel like a lot of work but, trust us, you should be richly rewarded by a steady flow of quality leads if you get it right. You will need a lead magnet to incentivise the visitor or recipient to hand over their contact details, usually an email address. A lead magnet is a free item or piece of content considered valuable by your audience. You may also need to develop further content to support your lead magnet, or core asset, to keep your audience engaged.
So, just how do you use content marketing to generate leads?
You will need to map out a content marketing campaign and strategy. The structure this campaign takes should be guided by your objectives and your intended target audience, among other factors.
But there’s more to it, and a little guidance goes a long way if you’re to develop and implement an effective content marketing campaign that not only brings in leads but brings in the right leads. In other words, those leads that are most likely to become paying customers.
To unlock the secrets to successful lead generation using content marketing, we’ve developed a free guide that shows you:
• How to develop an effective content marketing campaign
• How to implement a lead generation campaign
• How to convert the leads you capture into opportunities
Check out our guide, how to use content marketing to generate leads, today.