When B2B buyers are researching purchases they plan to make, there’s a long list of things they need to know before they can make a decision, including the obvious like price and features. But even earlier in their buying journey, most buyers consider the business value that a new type of software will bring to their business. They want to know how the investment will affect their business — making new processes possible or existing processes easier while optimizing resource usage or providing better service to their customers.
Unfortunately, many vendors focus too heavily on their product when they create marketing content, rather than thinking about the problems buyers are trying to solve. This means that buyers can’t get a full picture of your product, and they’re more likely to pass on it. Here are a few ways to make sure your content is sending the right message to buyers.
Start With a Problem
Every buyer has a problem they’re trying to solve, or they wouldn’t need new software. Maybe it’s that their network keeps getting breached, or they are having trouble recruiting new employees. Whatever problems your buyers are facing, that’s what you need to focus on when you create content.
For example, let’s say your product is a full HR suite. You should be creating content like “How to Make the Payroll Process Easier — Even for Global Teams” or “Improving the Onboarding Process to Keep New Hires Longer”. These types of content immediately introduce a problem — frustrating payroll process or high turnover rates — and give you a platform to show how your solution can solve those problems.
Limit Marketing Speak
Marketing speak makes sense for press releases and sales pitches (sometimes), but it doesn’t have a place in informative content. Words and phrases like “best-of-breed”, “world-class”, and “revolutionary” may feel important to driving home how impressive your software is, but it’s just distracting from the actual message you want to convey to buyers: They have a problem, and you can solve it.
Instead, try speaking plainly and providing statistics to back up your claims. Say things like “80% of users have fully implemented the software in as little as three weeks” or “our software users retain employees an average of 15% longer”. Even if your software isn’t necessarily super easy to use or intuitive, maybe you offer live training to help your customers get comfortable with the software’s functionality. Be clear about the value you’re providing buyers, rather than trying to make them figure it out on their own.
Stay Focused on Your Customers
It may sound counterintuitive because you want to explain how your product can help, but keep the focus on your customers as much as you can. For example, rather than saying something like “our software provides a 20% higher ROI”, reframe the sentence to make your customer the focal point: “you can expect an average of 20% higher ROI with our software”. It’s a small change, but it puts the buyer in the position to see how the product can specifically benefit them. You can still get all of the same points across while keeping your reader at the center.
Similarly, don’t be afraid to speak directly to the reader in your content, especially if your brand’s voice is more casual. You want them to be using the software, so you don’t have to be vague about some third party. Use direct “you” statements whenever possible, rather than “they” statements or passive language.
Consider Your Role
All of your customers have goals and aspirations for how they want their business to operate. How can you position yourself as a partner to help them achieve those goals? While part of this means dreaming along with your customer about all of the things you could accomplish, you’ll also need to be practical. What does your roadmap look like? Are there trends in your space that will force businesses to change? How can you help your customers adjust to these changes while simultaneously adapting along with them?
By answering these questions, you can help prove value to your customers and show them that you’re ready to be more than just a vendor. You want to be a partner and actually help them with the problems they’re facing.
Customer-Focused Content Can Increase Sales
When customers know exactly what they can expect from a product, they’re more likely to make a purchase than they would be if they had to guess. Telling buyers directly what problems your software can solve for them builds trust and makes it easier for them to get buy-in from their buying committee. Remember, only talking about yourself won’t get you very far in social situations, and the same is true for your content.
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