Why an arbitrary number like 317? Because that’s the number of posts we published in 2011.
We focus on quality here so churning out that number of articles is no small task. Throughout the year we learned many lessons that could be applied to any number of B2B blogs.
Today, we thought we’d share a year’s worth of tips for publishing a top-notch B2B marketing blog – even if you’re writing a new post every day.
For us, our customers are interested in topics like marketing automation, Revenue Performance Management and lead scoring. So at the beginning of the year we culled our expertise around lead scoring, considering where the practice was headed. The article is still relevant today.
February: Try Speaking Like a Human
It’s remarkable the kind of attention you can attract if you just try talking like an ordinary human. Sure, it can be scary to wander away from the B2B parlance, but it can also be refreshing.
We were the first in our industry to sponsor SXSW Interactive. To prepare we thought we’d give people some tips that went beyond telling them how to best manage their networking. We told them where to get the best coffee or nurse a hangover.
March: Interview Your Own People
We’re not big on heavy self-promotion on our blog, but there comes a time when a truly inventive new product or service calls for some exploration. One of the best ways to help explain innovations is to interview the innovators.
When it came to the establishment of our marketplace for B2B apps, we decided to interview our Chief Technology Officer, Steven Woods, to breakdown the concept. It proved popular for customers and prospects alike.
April: Interview Your Customers
No one has a better perspective on your company than your customers. Chances are they have some pretty cool stories that sound less like marketing and more like an actual story.
If you have a customer with a cool story, interview them like a reporter. Let them tell their own story instead of trying to shape it. This was a tactic we took with the Center for American Progress, which was using marketing automation in some intriguing ways.
May: Don’t Try to Be the News. Explain the News.
Too often businesses try to make the headlines with exaggerated claims and over-the-top press releases. You can get a lot more mileage by helping your readers understand the big stories that impact them, than by trying to make yourself the news.
Case in point: When the European Union’s deadline for a new online privacy directive came about, B2B marketers needed answers to some basic questions. We stepped in by dispelling some common myths.
June: Put Your Best Stuff On Your Blog
One sure way to attract readers and followers to your blog is to make it the hub for your content marketing strategy. That means putting your best content on your blog and making it easily accessible.
The Social Media ProBook, which featured social media marketing advice from 20 experts, was a huge hit in the industry. We released it through our blog so people could discover other great content.
July: Stay True to Your Core
We take a wholistic approach on our blog, sharing articles that are about all kinds of topics that impact the modern marketer. But we don’t abandon our core audience in the process.
Include articles that help readers understand your segment. We gave readers some guidance for approaching the CEO about an investment in marketing automation, complete with a free, downloadable guide.
When it comes to publicizing your content, you should make an effort to make the post stands on its own as educational. Our Real World Marketing Syllabus has tons of educational resources. But when we made it available, we made sure the post itself outlined new trends in marketing.
October: Go Beyond the Buzzwords
Buzzwords are not necessarily empty concepts. In fact, they often indicate real changes and trends in your industry. But you can earn readers’ respect by diving deeper into buzzwords and explaining what they mean.
The social enterprise was a term being thrown around a lot in 2011. We decided it was worthwhile to answer the question, What is the social enterprise?
November: Every Event is an Opportunity
I go to a lot of events. I hear tons of talks and panel discussions. I can’t count the number of PowerPoint presentations I’ve seen. One thing about events is they provide plenty of fodder for blog posts.
When at an event, try to scrawl down notes or capture videos. Squeeze as much as you can out of an event. My trip to ad:tech in New York provided me with plenty of articles, particularly this succinct one from the head of marketing for Coca-Cola.
December: Challenge the Tech Press
A good relationship with the tech press is a solid policy for many B2B organizations. But if we’re now free to act like publishers, we shouldn’t shy away from challenging the popular tech sites when appropriate.
That’s exactly what happened when TechCrunch wrote an article lamenting how boring the news of SAP’s purchase of SuccessFactors seemed. Nothing boring about a $3.4 billion deal, we argued.
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