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How to Create Marketing Content that Converts to Leads

By: Robert Hennessey

How to Create Marketing Content that Converts to Leads

What is effective marketing content? More importantly what kind of marketing content will generate qualified B2B sales leads? Placing compelling marketing content on your website or conducting content marketing campaigns that convert prospects to B2B sales leads can be a quandary. 

I am going to go out on a limb here and declare that the marketing content that B2B professionals are in need of most is content that motivates your sales prospects to contact you.

We know what kind of marketing content is not useful, and that is commonly the marketing content found on most websites. Most content takes the form of a sales pitch or content lifted from a sales brochure. These pages are also very short in length usually less than 400 words with mainly bullet copy points.

Ineffective B2B Marketing Content fails to:

  • Engage the reader based on their needs for quality business solution information
  • Initiate a dialog between the reader and the content 
  • Elicit an action by the reader to reach out for contact 
  • Gain social clout and favor with search engine rankings

Common Content Marketing Mistakes

Content that converts prospects to leads is different from writing copy for a sales brochure. Here are four tips to remember in writing content that converts prospects to B2B sales leads.

  • Eliminate the sales pitch 
  • Not telling a problem-solution story 
  • Not Satisfying search engine requirements of between 400 and 1,000 words, (we recommend 600-to 800 words) 
  • Not writing from a customer-centric point of view

B2B Problem-Solution Marketing Content Types

Telling a good story about how your company solves business problems from your customer's perspective is critical in producing useful content. This approach works because a great story that captures your reader's attention and has three distinct elements.

A Beginning - (Begin with the problem encountered by your client and provide background to the problem, scope, implications, and impacts of the problem on the business.)

A Middle - (Describe how the client undertook the solving of their problem in detail with their trials and tribulations)

An End - (the solution your company ultimately provided and the solution benefits realized by the client)

Just remember your first English Composition course to become a good storyteller. The following content types are excellent in providing an essential structure for problem-solution storytelling.

  • Application Stories 
  • Articles 
  • Case Studies 
  • Market Research 
  • Press Releases 
  • White Papers

Turning Client Needs into Wants

Great Content that converts readers into clients requires more than a good story. Each story you tell must help sales prospects understand why they should engage with your firm and requires the following story components to be effective. The story must contain:

  • Relevant Content - real-life stories that your target prospects can relate to experiencing in their business

  • Urgent Content - stories that can prompt action on the part of your prospects because your solution can help them achieve success  

  • Topical Content - stories that relate the problems and solutions B2B firms face now

A compelling story that evokes a response includes these content attributes to transform a good story from interesting to that which will generate sales leads.

1. Relevant Content

Content relevance is crucial in connecting the sales prospects perception of their problem to your business solutions. If the sales prospect cannot perceive of a connection between their problem and your solution, then you are not relevant. Developing relevant content is predicated on either an internal issue or external concern depending on the type of problem your client has that your firm can solve.

Relevancy Content Types

Internal Issues 
Client Persona
Defining Problem Size Problem Awareness Implications of Not Acting Expected Results
External Issues 
Competitive Threats Seasonality
Industry Events
Technology Disruption World Events

Relevancy can be intensified by talking as precisely as possible about the business problem and solution you can provide. Always start with discussing the problem first. Solutions mean nothing if your prospect cannot relate to the problem. Internal and external issues faced by your sales prospect will help you connect the problems they face with your solution.

2. Urgent Content

Content that creates a sense of urgency focuses on demonstrating how your solution can help your prospect achieve success, and most importantly inspire action on the part of your audience to embrace your solution.

Develop content with urgency on either personal success issues like in Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs or business success issues depending on what will motivate your prospect to action. Therefore including content from both individual and business motivations is best.

Types of Urgent Content

Personal                            Business

Salary Increase               Money Savings

Promotion                       Time Savings

Security                            Productivity

Esteem                             Convenience-Easier

Self-Worth                       Safety

3. Topical Content

Last, is making sure your content is topical to the problems that your prospects are facing now or will be tackling shortly. This key is necessary to increase the relevance and importance of the problem you can assist with offering a proven solution.

Bottom Line:

Your B2B content needs to work hard to convert your prospects into sales leads. Use the types of marketing content that your sales prospects want. Avoid brochure copy and sales pitches and engage your audience with storytelling. Turning sales needs into wants by following these writing keys to marketing content that converts will result in generating more B2B sales leads and sales.

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