B2B operators typically have a long sales cycle. As such, they face unique challenges in maintaining a long-term relationship with prospective clients. One way to stay connected is to share information in a consultative sales fashion. This practice has given rise to the practice of content marketing.

New research from HiveFire shows that B2B operators use a number of marketing tactics. And content marketing is at the top of the list.:

  • Content 82%
  • Search70%
  • Event 68%
  • PR 64%
  • Traditional PR/TV/Radio 32%

According to HiveFire, content marketing is defined as “the creation and publication of original content, such as blog posts, photos, videos, website resource pages, case studies or white papers to enhance a brand’s visibility.”

Surveyed B2B operators list their top marketing challenges as limited budget (28%), limited staff (23%) and organizational cultures that are mired in ‘status quo’. Despite those constraints, these businesses prioritize their content marketing goals as follows:

 

  • Driving leads 78%
  • Establish thought leadership 35%
  • Boost brand awareness 35%
  • Increase web traffic 28%
  • Improve search results 24%

These operators also say that a good content marketing program should engage customers (82%) and drive sales (55%). But the task of content marketing is growing more complex as companies must locate or create the content and determine the best way to archive and then share this information. As a result, nearly half of B2B operators are actively curating their content to ensure that the most relevant information is reaching targets at the right time.

[Source: B2B Marketing Trends 2011 Survey. Getcurata.com. September 2011. Web. 18 Oct. 2011]