B2B Content Marketing Guide, Part 5: Organic Lead Generation for B2B

This is part 5 of a 6-part series on B2B content marketing. Part 1 explores why content marketing is essential for B2B. Part 2 covers audience research, followed by part 3, which explains how to create content. Then part 4 covers paid media strategy, and this part covers organic strategy. Lastly, part 6 reviews the crucial importance of the marketing-sales handoff.


B2B marketing relies on a culmination of various strategies and techniques to be successful. There’s no one “right” way that it should be done. We find that the best way to do organic lead generation for B2B is to leverage the content you already have to bring in organic traffic.

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Organic Lead Generation for B2B Starts with SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a strategy that combines writing and web coding to create content that is easily read by search engines, so they deem it “useful.” In addition, using SEO helps drive leads organically, meaning you don’t directly pay for them like on other platforms.

HubSpot defines SEO as:

“[The] techniques that help your website rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). This makes your website more visible to people who are looking for solutions that your brand, product, or service can provide via search engines like Google, Yahoo!, and Bing.”

When most people think of SEO, they think of keywords, which isn’t wrong. However, to implement an effective SEO strategy, consider search and buyer intent as part of your keywords (and how that all plays into the sales funnel). A basic sales funnel has three stages, and your SEO strategy will change depending on which is being targeted:

Phase Informational Commercial Transactional
What it is
  • Users are trying to get an overview or understand the use of the product—like what it is or how it can help them. This may start the path to purchase, or the user may determine they don’t need the product at all.
  • The transition period that either continues the buyer journey or ends it. Provide content that clarifies what features you offer or how the solution does certain things better than the competition.

 

  • Provide information that really sets you apart from the competition and, if possible, make pricing easily available. Work with sales to understand what questions prospects who are about to purchase typically ask and use that to inform content topics.
Why it matters
  • Having this content available puts your organization as the front-running “expert” in their minds. This will make prospects more likely to return when they are ready to purchase.

  • The prospect is moving away from research, has determined the product they need, and is now considering which solution meets their requirements. This is the time to make your product shine to ensure the consumer selects you over a competitor.
  • This is the last chance to get that sale. Make a good impression!
Keyword recommendations
  • What is [generalized product]?
  • Define [generalized product or service]
  • [Generalized product] vs. [generalized product]
  • Best [generalized product]
  • Enterprise [generalized product]
  • [Generalized product] for SMBs
  • [Your product name] vs. [competitor product name]
  • [Product name] price
  • [Product name] cost
  • How much does [product name] cost?
  • Buy [product name]
Extra Tips
  • Certain websites, like Wikipedia, .edu sites, and news sites, will be nearly impossible to compete with for research because of their high domain authority (DA). If the SERP has these as the top results, put your efforts elsewhere or consider a similar but slightly different keyword.
  • Don’t reference news articles when looking at competitor SEO strategies; these only rank well because of high DA and clickbait titles.
  • It’s all about keyword modifiers. Take the keywords from the informational phase and switch out “define” with terms like “best.”
  • This is an excellent opportunity to write comparison content. Don’t be afraid to call out competitors (just make sure your content isn’t misleading).

 

  • Be sure your website provides a good user experience. This often means a clear path to the next step of the sales process.
  • If it’s possible for users to take the next step without having to talk to a salesperson (one-click checkout, self-guided demo, etc.), that’s even better!

Then, Lead Generation for B2B Ties into the Sales Funnel

Google states that the best way to get high search rankings is to:

“Be there, be useful, and be quick.”

So that means, regardless of where customers fall in the sales funnel, you want to be there when they search. Create optimized content that can be helpful at every stage of the sales funnel.

  • “Be there” by doing in-depth keyword research to determine quality keywords at each funnel stage.
  • “Be useful” by analyzing SERPs to understand what Google considers the useful content people need, then optimize accordingly.
  • “Be quick” by writing content that is straight to the point, and improve technical SEO with fast load times and strong UX.

Putting It All Together for Organic Lead Generation for B2B

Offer a Matching CTA with Every Blog to Drive Conversions

Every SEO blog post is a possible entry point for a new prospect. Don’t waste that opportunity! Answer the questions they asked, and you are likely to be rewarded. The best method is to offer a downloadable content piece that provides more information on the topic they are learning about in the blog. If there’s no asset to offer, then at least give them an opportunity to contact you right on the page with an embedded form or chat window (and, in the meantime, get started on those larger assets).

We see conversion rates up to 20% when matching the right offer with the right content/keywords.

 

Think we’re done? Think again – now it’s time to enrich those leads!

Read Part 6

Or, download our comprehensive B2B content marketing guide:

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Or, if you’re ready to get started with B2B content marketing:

Jen Beall

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