By Alan Graner
In several blogs I’ve taken companies to task for concentrating their efforts on talking about themselves rather than how they can help their prospects and customers.
In other words, you may be selling drills but I’m buying holes. So instead of talking about drill specs, tell me how your drill makes my job easier, faster, more accurate, more profitable.
According to the 2014 Forrester Research/Business Marketing Association/Online Marketing Institute study, “Compare your B2B Content Marketing Maturity (summarized at http://www.forrester.com/B2B+Marketers+Struggle+To+Connect+Content+Marketing+With+Business+Value/-/E-PRE7144), the same problem is to blame for the failure of content marketing.
It seems most companies are in the early stages of content marketing and haven’t made the transition from product-focused to relationship-building marketing.
I can imagine a company president calling Amanda in marketing and tasking her with producing more content—any content—in the mistaken belief that sheer quantity will bring the results desired.
This “strategy” has failed miserably. As the survey notes:
- 85% of B2B marketing practices fail to retain customers or win their long-term loyalty.
- Only 14% of those surveyed thought their companies’ content efforts delivered value back to the business..
Why content marketing fails
The answer is simple. Most content marketing:
- Fails to highlight how products and services help customers become successful.
- Lacks forward-leaning insights that buyers can turn into action.
- Focuses on closing the deal, not on building relationships.
According to Laura Ramos, Forrester Research Vice President and Principal Analyst, marketing must shift from product-centric content to relationship. This, she says, “boosts brand visibility, and attracts buyers interested in the problems their company can solve.”
Agree or disagree?
Image: Mike via Flickr®
Alan Graner is Chief Creative Officer at Daly-Swartz Public Relations, an Orange County, CA business public relations and marketing content firm. For content that makes you stand out from the crowd, email Jeffrey Swartz at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or visit www.dsprel.com.