How to generate leads with content marketing

June 4, 2021

Content marketing is an integral part of promoting your business. Instead of relying on a slick sales pitch, you can more effectively educate and connect with your audience by creating valuable content and fostering meaningful relationships between customers and your brand.

That said, the strategic aspect of your marketing can’t be overlooked. It’s not enough to create well-written, interesting content. You also need to ensure that content aligns with your goals and guides your customers in a direction that benefits your business.

In other words, you need to develop a content marketing strategy that improves  lead generation, conversion rates, and sales. But how can you accomplish that? Whether you work with a SEO partner or produce your content in-house, here are a few tips to keep in mind. 

 

Diversify Your Content Creation 

Whether you’re investing in the stock market or developing a marketing plan, you don’t want to put all your eggs in one basket. Not only should you be exploring a multitude of digital marketing tactics (ranging from paid ads to link-building), but you should also remember to diversify the types of content you create for your brand.

If you’re creating content for a B2B business, you should create blog posts, web copy, case studies, white papers, and video content. But in addition to covering these main content types, you can create content that aligns with the search intent of your audience. Even if your audience shares certain characteristics or traits with one another, it’s likely that different buyers are at different stages of the buyer’s journey. Some may be ready to make a purchase while others are still researching their options.   By building a content strategy around this journey, you can create content that addresses the needs and challenges that your audience is facing as they show more interest in what you’re offering.

For example, informational content can address potential customers who are in the early stages of their journey. These individuals want fast answers to their questions, but they might not necessarily be ready to buy. However, providing them with the information they need may help them perceive your brand in a positive way and remember you later on. A little later in the buyer’s journey, you’ll have customers who are looking to find specific product information and comparisons. You can create product reviews or comparisons to move these customers further along. Finally, content like video tutorials, how-tos, or more advanced content can nurture the existing relationship between a lead and your brand and finally convince them to take the leap (or turn them into loyal customers once they’ve made a purchase). 

When you’re developing your content strategy, make sure you aren’t creating content just for the sake of filling a content calendar. While keeping your website content fresh is important, you’ll want your strategy to serve a greater purpose: meeting leads where they are and nudging them along their journey.

Be Choosy With Your CTAs

No doubt, you’ve seen CTAs (or calls-to-action) on virtually every webpage you’ve ever visited. But that doesn’t mean all CTAs are created equal. Some are certainly more effective than others -- and not all CTAs are interchangeable. 

You’ll want to match the CTAs you use in different channels and sections of your websiteto the overarching goal of your content strategy. In some cases, that may mean not trying to sell your products or services outright in your CTA. You may actually be more interested in obtaining the lead’s contact information, as personal interaction may be the next step along their journey. If you try to sell the product or service before they’re really ready, your CTAs won’t be nearly as effective. 

CTAs should drive the customer to perform a certain behavior. Otherwise, they’re pretty meaningless. Of course, you’ll want to be thoughtful with your CTA use, as well. Too many CTA buttons can backfire, while having too few will make you miss out on opportunities to convert.

Consider the whole experience 

Having great website content is a must, but it’s not enough to generate qualified leads. It’s about the entire experience that consumers have with your brand.

What happens when a potential customer engages with you on social media? How do you follow up with leads who complete an online form?  If you haven’t considered your messaging beyond your initial value proposition,  it’s likely you’ll lose an opportunity to convert a lead into a customer.

The plus side is that having a regular cadence of new content can give you a lot more to work with when posting on social media or reaching out to prospects via email. It’s possible to start with a long-form piece and then pull key messages from that piece that can be used in other channels. You might also want to consider building backlinks to your most valuable blog posts, especially if they will resonate with your leads. This can improve the page’s rankings in search results and increase your chances of getting in front of your targeted audience. .

Undoubtedly, lead generation is a huge challenge for most business owners. But by developing a well-aligned content creation strategy, you’ll ensure that your marketing is more effective. Once you make sure your content supports the greater goal of generating leads, everything will fall into place.