Content marketing has become a relevant and crucial element in the marketing strategy in the age of the network. The contents worked and had an impact that traditional advertising no longer achieved. In addition, they provided a key element, that of added value, that consumers wanted and that brands had to start adding.
But, as happens when something becomes fashionable and when something begins to show that it works, made the law, made the trap. There were few who simply thought that they could position themselves with content and that they did not really think about what those contents implied. That is, they thought simply to fill the network of words but not in what those words demanded and in what they forced.
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That is a problem, because content marketing is not that. It is not worth simply to publish words and fill the corporate web of texts. These texts have to be useful for something and they also have to provide a certain value. Consumers do not want to read trash, they want brands to give quality texts or that content to discover things.
This is especially important when those who do content marketing are B2B companies. The recipients of the information expect even more quality and even deeper and more complete texts.
And, in fact, the content that B2B companies are releasing to the market is very far from it. In reality, you are betting on low quality content or simply filling out quickly what you need to do (and possibly with a budget as low as possible) to “comply”. In 2013, an analysis of Velocity Partners pointed out, in a very provocative way, that “shit” was the main threat to B2B content marketing. Then they pointed out that the deluge of contents was not helping anyone and that the brands had to weather it, positioning themselves in another way.
Five years later, his conclusions and his provocative conclusion are still relevant, as they point out in a Forrester analysis. The biggest problem with B2B marketing in terms of content remains that many of them are garbage.
Too much material, too little relevant
The data and the opinions of the B2B buyers themselves demonstrate this clearly. Forrester has data on the perception that the tech industry has of the content generated by the brands that try to reach buyers there. The decision makers of the technology industry believe that the material generated by companies trying to convince them is worth little and, even worse, that perception has been growing in recent years.
According to the data of the study, with a global sample, the decision makers believe in 57% of the cases that most of the material they are given is useless. In 2016, they were only 50%. It is not the only sign that the content seems irrelevant and valuable to them. 60% acknowledge that they get the information through other sources (an improvement compared to 66% in 2017 but a debacle compared to 44% in 2016) and 66% believe that sellers give them too much material, among which navigate (60% believed it like this in 2017).
Buyers feel overwhelmed because companies are giving them too much content and do not know how to purge them, which is especially bleeding if you consider that these contents are not worth anything or that is what they perceive.
For companies, the situation is a burden and very dangerous. According to Forrester, 62% of B2B buyers make their decisions based only on the information they have found online.
What buyers want
The recipients of content marketing are very clear about what they want and what they do not want brands and companies to offer them.
From the outset, B2B buyers do not want content that simply describes what products do. They do not want enumerations of their characteristics, but they expect them to really tell them how it works, what impact it has or how it solves problems. Nor do they want very long contents, those that are made in a certain way eternal. Webinars of one hour, long videos or content that goes beyond the 10 pages are those that achieve a worse engagement.
Consumers want, therefore, contents at the antipodes of all this. They want content that is short and concise, that gives key points and helps to visualize things quickly. They also want examples of what solutions do, success stories but also testimonies in which problems or points of friction are pointed out (and how they are solved).
And, of course, they want reliable sources. B2B consumers want content to come from credible sources, experts and analysts who know what they say and not articles and content written or published by sources that have not yet proven their worth.