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'The Importance of Aligning Content with Your Sales Cycle' from Kim Gusta Marketing's blog

The Importance of Aligning Content with Your Sales Cycle

Category:  Sales Cycles  Lead Generation  Technology Marketing  Content Marketing  

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Content marketing is about producing high-value content that addresses your buyers’ concerns and interests. The focus is on education, not selling. It’s also about giving buyers the information they want when they want it – not hitting them over the head with lots of stuff they may not be ready for – because they’ll either ignore it or delete it.

Remember, technology buyers are delaying talking to your sales team – they want to do as much self-service research as possible before they contact you. To help them, you need to align your content with the stages in your sales cycle.

Match Content to Your Buying Stages

For each sales stage, your buyers’ have distinct information needs. Someone just beginning the research for a software solution wants different information than a buyer who is further along in the sales cycle and evaluating vendors. The idea is to understand the type of information your buyers need that will “pull” them along to the next stage of the sales cycle.

Get started by:

  • Deeply understanding your buyers, including the kinds of information they want and when they want it
  • Mapping buyers’ information needs to the stages of your sales cycle
  • Brainstorming ideas for interesting content…and try to mix up the format. Different people have content consumption preferences – visual learners prefer video, auditory learners might like podcasts, and others prefer to read.
  • Asking what elements of surprise can be included? Technology marketing tends to be a bit dull. Taking a cue from the entertainment industry – where can you add the occasional touch of humor or suspense? Kinaxis, which sells supply chain software, created humorous videos – all on supply chain management –not your typical funny ha-ha subject.
  • Creating an editorial calendar that shows the when, where, and who details. When will each element be created? Where in the sales cycle does it belong? Who is responsible for creating it? Most editorial calendars should have 3-6 months worth of content so you don’t run into a dry patch. Update the calendar monthly.

Giving your buyers what they want when they want it is critical to engaging them. And if you don’t do it well, they’ll go elsewhere on their self-service research quest.

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