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The Sales Review

Learn about emerging best practices, strategies and insights on B2B sales today dedicated for the modern sales organization.

4 Ways To Create Content That Buyers Find Helpful

Posted by Neale Martin on May 19, 2016 12:28:56 PM

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In general, most content stinks. According to SiriusDecisions, 60-70% of content in B2B organizations goes unused. For argument’s sake let’s round that off to 65% — almost 7 in 10 of the marketers and salespeople reading this post have useless content.

Why does most content suck?

Again, SiriusDecisions says the number one reason is irrelevance. The number two and number three reasons? People don't know it exists or can't find it. There’s so much noise on social media. Open up your Twitter or LinkedIn feed and you’re bombarded with dozens of new posts/shares every minute. Of that, you probably only read a small fraction of what’s being shared with you.

For example, the average lifespan of a Tweet is 18 minutes. With the crazy number of tweets being shared every second, your content disappears from your buyers’ feeds even faster. Without an expansive social reach and frequency of posts, your content won’t see the light of day.

Why is good content crucial for social selling?

Modern buyers are turning to social media in search of solutions to their growth obstacles. Forrester revealed that 74% of today’s B2B buyers conduct more than half of their research online before making a purchase. If your salespeople want to be starting conversations with buyers on social, marketing must be supplying them with good content.

What can marketing do to create better content for sales?

1. Include a lot of high-resolution images and visualizations
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As the old saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words! Content with relevant images get 94% more views than content without relevant images.  A couple screenshots and stock images from an online gallery can be enough to boost your content’s overall performance. 

2. Curate infographics
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According to massplanner, infographics are liked and shared on social media 3X more than other any other type of content. I personally love sharing infographics. There’s no better way to tell a compelling argument than to use visualizations of empirical data. They also organize complex data into digestible stories that are simple to understand.  

3. Tell the whole story

When you are looking for a solution to a problem, you will likely go online and do a bit of research prior to making a purchase. Your B2B buyers are the same way!

HubSpot reports that 47% of buyers value content with breadth and depth of information. They are in search of detailed answers to their questions. When a company’s content provides a buyer with the best answers to their problems, the sales rep sharing it will be perceived as a trusted advisor. If your sales team is sharing content that lacks detail, it won’t answer all of the prospects questions.

4. Make your content easy to read & understand

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Your content does not need to have the sophistication of an academic journal to be credible and engaging to your buyers. According to Hubspot, 44% of buyers value content with ease of access, understanding and readability. Anticipate that many people will skim through your posts, only reading the headlines to get the gist of your insights. Organize your posts with easy to understand & bolded headlines that are broken down by logical flow.

The Bottom Line

Your salespeople need good content to become effective social sellers. If you implement these four suggestions, buyers will be more likely to engage your content. Sales & Marketing teams that collaborate on content development are doing the best job of guiding the buyer along their journey.

What type of content do your buyers engage with most? Tweet me your insights @TheNealeDeal or add me on LinkedIn.

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