Producing brilliant B2B financial content is a challenge that your marketing team must rise to. Not only is content marketing constantly changing but, as you surely well know, finance is too.
Your content marketing strategy therefore needs refocusing on a regular basis to make sure that the content you produce is what your market wants to see. Read on to discover how to approach your content creation for the year ahead.
The 5 epic tips for brilliant B2B financial content in 2017
1. Go niche
Avoid the temptation to broaden your buyer persona range. It might seem like this gives you a greater pool of potential clients but it doesn’t. And it’s the mistake that many companies make.
Zone in on your one ideal buyer. You can also aim for buyer personas that are very similar. But don’t stray too far.
Why do this? For many reasons. One, you can market yourself as a specialist in your buyer persona’s sector. Two, you can grow your experience in this sector to strengthen your specialist status.
Three, your marketing message isn’t diluted to accommodate different target buyers. Instead, it benefits from razor sharp focus on one ideal buyer.
Four, you can channel your company’s entire business development efforts towards this one buyer persona. Imagine how much easier it is for your marketing team to devise a content strategy tailored specifically to one or two ideal buyers. In this way, your content conveys a company that is a master rather than a jack of all trades.
So, instead of bringing your financial expertise to startups, SMEs and large cap companies, choose one. And instead of choosing from ten different sectors, why not zone in even further and focus on a few specific sectors? You could become known as the specialist financial services provider for startups in high-tech, large caps in finance, or whatever your specific services and buyer personas are.
If your buyer persona is any type of SME, for instance, you’re going to want to eliminate financial jargon completely. Those companies simply don’t understand the language of your specific financial sector vertical.
There are so many financial companies who churn out content with nothing but jargony term after jargony term and they wonder why it isn’t getting them anywhere.
Speaking in jargon that only you and your competitors understand doesn’t show off your depth of knowledge.
It isn’t impressive.
It doesn’t help your reader.
And it doesn’t help your content strategy to achieve its goals.
It does, however, waste your time and your company’s money.
Put your content into a language that your target buyer will understand. Put it in layperson terms and communicate succinctly what it means for their business.
But, if you are, say, a finance company in investments and your buyer persona is institutional investors, your approach will clearly need to be different. Your target is a sophisticated finance professional. As such the content must be tailored to match their level of knowledge and expertise.
3. Hold off on the hard-sell
Yes, you need to see a return on investment. Yes, it costs to create content. But going for the hard-sell immediately or too soon is a recipe for failure. Build up trust and rapport with your ideal buyer by educating them and helping them with their business problems.
It’s human nature to want to see instant results so it might take a while to fully resist the urge to include calls to action that essentially scream out PLEASE BUY OUR PRODUCT NOW.
It should be a natural progression. You wouldn’t ask someone to marry you on the first date after all, would you?
The financial sector is becoming increasingly competitive due to fintech innovation, new banking sector entrants and new regulatory changes such as PSD2. As there is now much greater choice for the consumer, be it a business or a consumer, “selling yourself” right off the bat is even less likely than before to yield results.
4. Use the 4 U’s of content – urgency, uniqueness, usefulness, ultra-specificity
1. What is urgent about your content? 2. What is unique? 3. Why is it useful? 4. How is it ultra-specific? These 4 U’s are relevant for any type of content, but especially so in the case of finance. There is so much content for each financial subsector. I’m sure you’ve seen this for your own financial service sector, right? Finance as a sector has fully embraced content marketing, making adhering to the 4 U’s of utmost importance in getting your content to cut through the noise and turn your prospect’s head.
Let me put these questions above in another way.
1. Why is your content relevant to them now? What makes it necessary to read it now? Adding in time elements easily adds the urgency element to your content. See how I included 2017 in the title? This tells you, my reader, that the article is new and relevant to now.
2. What does your content offer your buyer persona that none of your competitors do? Is it a rehash of an article that’s been done a hundred times before or is there a new, unique twist on old topics? Or is it an entirely new idea that will blow your reader’s socks off?!
3. How can it be useful to your reader? How will it help them – are you dishing out platitudes or is there some really good financial advice for businesses in there?
4. Is your content too general or vague, or do you get your teeth sunk into the meat of a specific problem that plagues your ideal buyer? Again in the title of this article, I opted for “B2B financial content”, not just plain old “financial content.”
It’s specific. It speaks to businesses who sell to other businesses. It indicated that the article focuses on a solution that is only applicable to them.
5. Make it compelling
Look, you work in finance and you’re probably passionate about what you do, but the majority of people, well, aren’t. Most people’s idea of hell is doing their finances, and that includes business owners doing their books. Yep, finance is tagged as a “boring industry”. So what can you do?
How can you get SME owners or the decision maker whose attention you want to give it to you? The answer lies in what would motivate them to pay attention to your article. What are the benefits? What do they get out of it? This is what the content must focus on.
If you’re an FX company and your article’s title is “Currency Update: Dovish Fed Play Down Rate Hike Talk,” why on earth would a cosmetics company in the UK care? OK, there might be a chance they read it – if they understand what the title means, that is. But they probably still won’t. It doesn’t speak to them.
A better title would communicate what the low probability of an interest rate increase for the US dollar would mean for currency exchange rates and for the business’s costs to buy foreign currency. “UK Importers to Benefit from Weaker US Dollar” is a headline that speaks to the buyer persona for an FX company whose clients are UK importers.
How else can you improve your financial content? Got any insider tips I haven’t mentioned here? Anything in particular work for your own strategy? Hope to see you in the comments!
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