Companies that market to other businesses have unique challenges. With employee turnover rates at some companies between 30-40%, decision makers to whom they market can change frequently. So, how can business-to-business (B2B) companies build trust and acquire new customers?
The latest B2B research from the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and Marketing Profs shows that 73% of marketers use case studies, and 65% feel they are an effective tactic. But, for many smaller businesses, the $2,000-$5,000 of internal resource time needed to produce a case study may be too high.
Besides, if you were writing a case study to market your company’s products and/or services, wouldn’t you make it appealing? You want good quality leads, don’t you? Realistically, however, less than 30% of survey respondents place strong trust in vendor-created content.
So, who you gonna trust?
According to the CMI article by Vinay Bhagat, “In-depth user reviews provide information seekers with a more trusted alternative to vendor-produced case studies. Prospective buyers want to hear user stories, but want them to be unvarnished and provide a balanced discussion by including cons as well as pros.”
Add to this the fact that almost 80% of B2B buyers use search to begin their information discovery process for a business purchase. As your company adds more in-depth reviews and customer testimonials to its content marketing mix, they are likely to rank higher on search engine results pages than case studies will.
Just like consumer products and services, people trust what customers/users have to say more than the suppliers themselves.
Does your B2B company depend on customer testimonials and user reviews to acquire new customers? If yes, has it been effective?
If not, what content marketing tactics have been the most successful for you?
This article was originally published by Elaine Fogel
Published: February 19, 2014