Simple steps to Creating continuous content for the B2B market

content, education, Marketing, messaging

One big question that I hear a lot of times, how do I create a regular messaging / content calendar; I don’t have enough content.

So this will be a very short post with a simple set of tactics to cover roughly half the year. If you don’t come across anything else during those 6 months which can be created into content, within the 6 months, then you can recycle this. Or I will give some other ideas also….read on.

I learnt this technique from Dean Jackson while taking one of his courses and listening to his podcast on ilovemarketing.com.

The assumption over here is that you know your market well, since you’re focusing on a Single Target Market at a time.

If you know your market well then you will know the typical questions that go on in the mind of the customer, their apprehensions and their aspirations. List down 20 of these questions. Make a response about what’s the best way to handle those questions as they relate to your offerings. Send out out one of these every week. You would then have a calendar decided for 20 weeks.

Then create 6 posts, where you analyse the 20 questions, customer feedbacks, comments etc. This way you would have created a calendar for the complete 6 months.

If after 6 months you don’t have content, then as I said earlier, you can recycle the same content or you could ask your some of your customers about what are the pet peeves that they have with your industry. If you have 10-12 customers and each of them has at least 2 unique issues with your industry , you have created roughly another 24-26 weeks of content, by taking their point of view and also giving suggestions to improve.

Your customers can give you all pointers to the content you will need , if you ask.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Messaging – how much is excess

B2B, education, education, follow-up, Marketing, messaging

“Won’t my prospect get irritated with me and unsubscribe” – this is one of the most common statements I hear when I tell people, that they should have a regular communication with their prospects and customers.

All your prospects and customers are in a state of a “moving parade”. So things keep changing for people all the time. And you don’t know when they may need what you sell. But when they need you, they should remember you first.

Now there will be somethings which are impulse purchases like a bottle of wine. Or small value items like a can of an aerated drink. Since the volume of transactions can be very high because of the spread of the decision making, you want to message more often. That’s the reason you see a Coke getting advertised multiple times a day. In the consumer space, you travel- international , less often, so you see airlines advertising less often.

In case of B2B, which is generally high value and less impulsive, you don’t advertise/message multiple times a day. But having said that, you need to keep messaging frequently – I generally recommend once a week. If not, at least twice a month. Anything less than this and chances are that you will float into oblivion.

The key in B2B is more about providing value. Finding ways to inform the customer, something new about what you offer – a new application, a new industry, a faster method, training for their employees. If you have segmented your market well, then you would typically know the kind of challenges that could take place, so providing education, value would be simpler. There can be a plethora of ways you can orient messages and multiple ways to get them delivered. Sometimes email, sometimes post cards, sometimes webinars.

If you keep adding value, then customers / prospects generally don’t mind receiving your mails and in a lot of cases may look forward to them. If some do unsubscribe, even after you are providing value / education, then its a good sign – because that person anyway would not have done business with you.

So don’t think in terms of excess, think in terms of value.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Messaging – Answering the Questions of a prospect

B2B, education, education, Marketing, messaging, problem solving, Questions, segmentation, single target market

In yesterday’s post I spoke about the pain (fear of) and pleasure (gain of) and how you can use it to get your message to stick with a prospect.

I have written multiple times earlier on the idea of a Single Target Market and how you can niche a segment further based on usage. This comes in useful when you want to build your messaging.

As an example you niched your B2B market by industry, then you further niched it by revenue. Now if you niche it further based on whether you are targeting prospects who intend to buy your kind of product or service for the first time or are you targeting prospects for whom this is a replacement. Another could be a backup to the main product for insurance purposes.

Once you have chosen the usage, you can now get into the shoes of the prospect and think what could go on in their mind. If its a first time buyer – you could help that company with messaging entered around evaluating your kind of offering from an unbiased angle. On the other hand if its a replacement market that you are targeting, then you could talk of how the technology has changed and how by replacing the old technology they could get more benefits.

Based on the usage criteria, the team of people to whom you will send the message, will also change. For the replacement market in the industry, you may need to talk to the operations or maintenance folks, while if its for the first time usage you may need to talk to the project folks. Each of these folks has a different “view of life” and hence the problems that you address and the education that you have to do is different.

You need to know your end game and then work backwards such that you have a delighted customer. Its only when you delight a customer can you hope to get referrals and move further to dominate that market.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Pain & Gain – the pivot for messaging

B2B, Fear, Human Brain, Marketing, messaging

Its general human psychology that people avoid pain (fear of) and go for the pleasure / gain. People remember the pain forever or almost forever while they discount the gain. You lose a dollar and your brain will remind you about it for a longtime, but if you earned / won 10 dollars, your brain will discount it by saying it was luck.

This is the same logic why people don’t have a Vitamin C tablet which costs a few cents everyday as a preventive measure but go out and spend thousands of dollars when they get hospitalised. The pain & fear makes them spend the large amounts but the idea of spending a few cents and “gain” the positive of good health.

When you do messaging – whatever kind – an advertisement, a video, a webinar or individual sales – you have to keep these two emotions and their relative importance in the brain , in mind, if you want to get your message to stick to your audience. So while the negative or the message of pain will get more attention, you put too much of negative and it becomes dreary.

In every audience there will be people who are reactive since they are in pain and get your message immediately. On the other end of the spectrum there are people who are proactive and want to ensure that they take care of things before anything can go wrong, they plan in advance. Then there’s a large section of the audience which is sitting in between these two ends. The challenge of your messaging is to take this mass of people to either side of the spectrum so that they buy what you are selling.

Generally its easiest to sell to a person who is in pain or recognises the pain, then the set of people who are proactive. Then you should aim for the audience in-between. In case of B2B if you are selling an ERP software, then the ones whose production is completely messed up on one side, while there’s dead inventory lying on the other side, would be the ideal set of people to target first. The next set of companies to target would be the ones who are thinking in terms of growth and want to ensure that they are ahead of the curve.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!