They may not be as sexy as an Instagram story or a podcast, but white papers and case studies are B2B content heavyweights. They are proof of your business acumen, and they build your brand authority and trust with facts, figures, and real-life customer stories. They may take more time and research than shorter content pieces, but they’re well worth your while.
White papers: research for decision makers
White papers outline actionable ways to solve business problems. They’re also the perfect place to highlight data research — which is both the backbone of your content and an appealing feature for engaging your B2B audience. As many as 82% of business leaders say they look at white papers over other branded content when making a decision about a brand’s products or services. A well-written, well-researched white paper accelerates the sales cycle, attracts more qualified leads, and helps to position you as a trusted authority in your field.
Where do you start? First, do the market research to find out what matters to your target audience. What problems are they looking to solve? What data are they looking for, and what questions do they want answered? Remember, a white paper is not for promoting your brand. It should focus on adding value. Once you’ve found your topic, it’s time for more research. Business leaders love to look at the bottom line, so help them out with statistics and visual data, such as charts and graphs. Balance hard data with a catchy, engaging title and a well-structured format, complete with headings and subheadings, and you’ve created a powerful marketing asset.
Case studies: real-life success stories
Case studies give you credibility with real-life customer success stories. They’re the social proof your brand needs to establish you as a market leader interested in, and educated about, your industry. Case studies provide concrete examples of customers who have experienced the benefits of working with your brand, and they help prospective clients visualize similar outcomes for their business. In fact, case studies are so compelling more than half of B2B buyers rank them as “very important” when evaluating a brand. And 66% of B2B marketers say case studies are their most effective lead generation tool. But to be an integral part of an effective marketing strategy, a case study should follow a few best practices.
First, your case study should follow a problem-solution format. What problem or undefined opportunity did the business in the case study present, and how did your brand help? Next, get granular on the details. You didn’t just help brand X increase their revenue — you helped them improve their margins by 12% in the second sales quarter. Finally, don’t forget video case studies: 86% of people say they want to see more videos from brands, and marketers who use video content grow their revenue almost 50% faster than those who don’t.
Content for building brand authority
Brand authority is the differentiator between successful brands and those struggling for market share. But authority is not something a brand is “born” with — it must be earned. Compelling content, of the type discussed here, is key to building trust with your audience, but for brand authority, you’ll need two more pieces to complete the puzzle: consistency and sharing.
Long-form and short-form content each have their place in your marketing content strategy, and establishing a consistent publishing schedule is crucial. Your audience demands high-quality content produced on a regular basis to build confidence before they invest in your brand. Sharing content across multiple channels is the final part of the equation, and it’s essential for expanding your audience and building a solid brand reputation.
Too busy or understaffed to focus on marketing and lead nurturing? You need an experienced team of B2B marketers, and Roikings can function as your own marketing department. We help build brands by conducting market research, outlining and implementing content strategies, and following up with qualified leads.
Book a call with the Roikings team today.