Picture the scene. You’re in a room filled with eligible single people and an individual catches your eye. The problem is that there are multiple other suitors who are also trying to get their attention, and you only have a few moments to try and make an impression. On the surface your competitors are pretty similar – so what sets you apart from all the rest?
Words. You talk, crafting what you say and using your knowledge to tailor your conversation and persuade them that you’re the one for them, and this principle is the same for B2B copywriting. Generic, churned out content will leave you in the reject pile; instead you must produce content which makes the reader want to pursue you rather than anyone else.
This blog will look at the 7 key steps for B2B copywriting, to ensure you’re well equipped to go out into the content marketing world.
Know who you’re talking to:
Know your audience. You’re producing content for your readers and so you need to write specifically for them. Just like on a date, you need to know who you want to attract, ask yourself:
- What are the goals of your audience?
- What do they share?
- What platforms do they use?
- What are their main problems/pain points?
- What are their main interests?
- What are they looking for from a partner?
By researching and gathering this information you can focus in on your readers to ensure that the content is tailored to their needs.
Solve your readers’ problems:
Your readers need to feel like they’re going to benefit from reading your content. Using ‘you’ or ‘your’, making sure your content is reader orientated and having a strong call to action can convince the reader that you can solve the problems specific to them. One of the worst mistakes you can make on a date is talking about yourself too much, and the same theory applies to content marketing. If your message is too pushy or sales-driven it will not build a rapport or level of trust with your leads.
First impressions matter:
You don’t get a second chance at a first impression and so the headline needs to catch the curiosity of the reader from the offset. Just by looking at the heading they must know that they’ll gain something from reading on and so ‘how to’ or ‘top tip’ titles are incredibly popular. You also need to make sure that the title isn’t ambiguous – give the reader a reason to read it, and then deliver on this. You want to avoid ‘cat fishing’ your prospects by promising a piece of content that’s described as solving one thing but doesn’t actually follow through with that promise, leaving your potential date underwhelmed.
Don’t make things too complicated:
Do you think big words and complicated language are going to impress? Think again! Unusual words and obscure acronyms slow us down, and busy people don’t have time to re-read content they don’t understand – so it’s best to keep your language clear and simple.
You only get a few minutes to make an impression in person, but you get even less time with online content. Users often leave webpages in 10-20 seconds if their attention isn’t grabbed, so sentences and paragraphs must be short and easy to read, without sacrificing on quality. A 20 word limit on sentences will make them more readable.
Write in a way that’s appropriate to the channel:
Reading online has become synonymous with scanning, with users reading on average only 28% of the text. The content that people want to read on social media channels will be different than that in marketing emails, so it’s important to match the content, writing style and length of copy to the appropriate channel.
Avoid marketing clichés:
“Are you a library book, because I’d like to check you out” probably won’t get you far on a date and clichés will also have a negative effect on your B2B marketing content. Overly boastful, pointless marketing clichés can have a detrimental impact on your content, detracting from the copy and causing distrust with the reader.
Still unsure? Don’t worry, if you need help with content creation or you’d like to learn how content marketing can help your business, then take a look at our Content Creation media pack: