Most companies use staff members – administrative assistants, interns, executives, salespeople – to write their websites, blogs, and other digital marketing, as well as their collateral and printed sales pieces. Many business owners get involved and write it themselves. But is this good practice?
There are a couple of problems with this DIY approach, one being that the company’s online and printed content rarely gets the attention it requires due to day-to-day operations, and secondly, most staff lacks the proficiency to write strategically and objectively. Content ends up being inconsistent in message and timing, and pushed off when “more significant” issues or tasks arise. Additionally, few B2B companies feel content is important enough to worry about.
But it is important – content IS your brand. Your company’s digital content and brochures tell people everything they need to know about your company, especially when they read between the lines.
- If content is poorly written and unprofessional, your company will be viewed the same.
- If there are errors, what does that say about your attention to detail and education?
- If the design and flow of the content is different on every post or piece, your company will come across as disorganized.
- And, most importantly, if content doesn’t speak your customers’ language, if it’s not client-centric and it’s all about how great your company is, they’ll typically leave your website or toss your brochure.
Well-written, balanced content produces leads. In fact, recent research by HubSpot shows companies that published 16 or more blog posts per month got 4.5 times more leads than companies that published 0-4 times per month. The key here is that the 16+ blogs must be useful to the reader – they're not just blogs for the sake of publishing something.
In this blog, we’ll focus on why you need a dedicated, professional copywriter or content specialist for your digital marketing, and how when the right message is delivered to the right people at the right time on the right platform, this strategy will produce an ROI.
“It takes no more than 50 milliseconds (that’s 0.05 seconds) for users to form an opinion about your website. .05 seconds – that’s all a user needs to determine whether they like your site or not, whether they’ll stay or leave. Yes – even for B2B products and services." – Taylor Francis Online
2 Main Reasons Your Company Should Use a Content Specialist
To discuss the two main reasons your company needs a content specialist, let’s start with a couple of questions.
1). Do you or does anyone in your company have the time (10+ hours a week) and copywriting experience to portray your company’s expertise professionally and with personality? Can this person talk about what you do from an outsider’s perspective, with your B2B customers/clients as the focus of that content? And does your content solve the searcher’s problem right away? If not, you need a professional copywriter.
2). Do you know how to not only reach your target audience when they search for what you offer, but also get them interested in your company and then convert their interest into sale? This requires turning your content into a lead-generating tool by fostering the know, like, and trust factor quickly, and implementing search engine optimization (SEO). If the answer is no, you need an experienced content specialist.
I could stop here, as the above two points sum up why your B2B company needs a professional copywriter with proven skills and SEO expertise. However, there is a bit more to share about how your revenue operations objectives will benefit from a content strategy, and which sales pieces should be written by a content specialist.
A Copywriter Ensures Content Is a Lead Generating Tool
Online content is the first line of communication with customers and potentials – before they ever engage a salesperson or call a customer service department. A 2020 study revealed 47% of consumers review at least 3-to-5 forms of content prior to engaging with sales associates. With the sales cycle now primarily online, it is more critical than ever to have your digital content speak to the reader, solve his or her problem, tell your story, and ask for the sale.
Having previously worked for marketing agencies, I have witnessed how many times the same company will redesign its website, boost dollars for Google Ads or social media advertising, and continue to tweak this and that, with weak results, never considering that their content is the problem (or their revenue operations strategy, but that’s a different post!).
A beautifully designed website, blog, or landing page may look nice, but if it doesn’t evoke emotions and inspire the reader to take some sort of action – sign up for emails, download a whitepaper, or contact you – you’ve lost the lead.
B2B Buyers are People Too – Create Trust with Content
Copywriting in the days of Mad Men was all about the science of playing on people’s emotions and solving their problems by touting the benefits of a product or service and making it irresistible. Nothing has really changed – no matter what you sell, products or services, and no matter who you sell to – a business or a consumer, you are always speaking to a person who is looking to fill a need.
People buy based on emotion, which means you have mere seconds to draw them in and get them to like you and trust you enough to contact you. Let’s look at an example.
A buyer needs a pallet of piping for his manufacturing business and he’s searching online for the best deal. He comes across two companies where almost everything is equal, except one is slightly more expensive.
1). Company Zebra has an old, basic website that spews facts about piping sizes and materials and how great the company is, without much else, other than pricing. The buyer then searches all website pages to figure out if he should call to order, fax a purchase order, or place his order online. Even the Contact Us page doesn’t make it clear. He leaves the site without taking further action and searches for another option.
2). Company Yowza has the same piping size/material information on its website, but the design is modern and friendly, and the content delivers info in a customer-centric, problem-solving tone. Pricing is a bit higher, but it’s easy to order – the website’s home page closes with, “We are here for you with online or call-in ordering, fast shipping, and a quality guarantee.” There is a Call Now button and a button to Order Online Here. There’s also a customer portal on the website for repeat ordering.
Which company would you choose? Company Yowza will win every time. Friendly. Customer-focused. Knowledgeable. Trustworthy. Nurturing. Simply through its website content, it's offering trust and value, not just selling a product. And the best part? This company just got a sale with one of the lowest customer acquisition costs available.
A Copywriter Balances Company Story and Customer Focus
When it comes to websites and print media, you lose the chance to have a back-and-forth conversation with your potential clients or current customers. So you must create it. You know what problems your company’s products and/or services solve. You know your expertise. But do you know what your prospects are looking for exactly? Do you know what makes them tick?
A copywriter can be objective about your company and conduct research to find out what your target audience’s pain-points truly are (most often, it’s not what you think it is) and then write to solve those pain-points in everyday language that appeals to them – not intercompany or industry lingo.
Imagine a friend saying to you in a conversation, “Hey, I know you’ve been looking for a company that offers five raw materials from a single-source so you don’t have five different invoices to process and the cost of receiving so many different deliveries.” And then that friend says, “Company Redbelt solves that problem, and they have 30 years of expertise and super-friendly customer service people. They’ll even send a sales representative around if you would like one-on-one representation.”
You just learned a lot about this company from a trusted source. You learned how it solves a common pain-point without boredom and hubris, without being “sold.” This is exactly what digital marketing can do on its own when written professionally – balance company story with customer focus and inspire action.
Which Sales Pieces Need a Copywriter?
No matter what type of media you use to send your message and share your brand, you need a copywriter who will capture your company’s “voice,” solve the problem, and ask for the sale with a direct call-to-action (CTA). People will not waste time trying to find what they need, so you must give it to them fast with professionalism and care, and that goes for every piece of content you publish.
All these forms of media and sales pieces need a copywriter’s expertise:
Your first line of inquiry with potentials and your sales tool for customers, each page should be professionally written – even the contact page and the thank you message.
A superior way to share your knowledge, offer value, and help your audience with a subtle yet effective CTA; the more the better as long as they offer true value to the reader.
Useful, proprietary advice that’s downloadable; readers will feel they are getting something of great value for free.
Display your expertise with clear content and real data.
Combine whitepapers/blogs into a worthy reference tool for your audience.
Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc.; if your audience is here, meet them here with the right content.
Sales enablement tools:
Turn blogs, whitepapers, case studies into sales collateral pieces to help your team sell.
Printed collateral pieces:
Flyers, postcards, coupons – people are increasingly responding to tactile materials.
The customer-centric tone of your brand must follow through here and close the sale.
Trade show booths and handouts:
Showcase your brand, use concise content, be unforgettable.
Many B2B companies us several of these at once, and they should. The key is to ensure everything carries the right message geared toward the right buyer delivered at the right time for maximum value and sales conversion potential. And your message should tell your story consistently, cohesively, and clearly; evoke emotions, inspire action, and ultimately, promote customer advocacy.
Content Specialist + Content Strategy = Quality Lead Generation
Effective sales growth starts with engaging the properly qualified leads and building trust – quality over quantity. Without a well-planned and executed content strategy to advance lead generation, sales will not grow. Atomic Revenue helps you get the right prospects interested, advance them through the sales process with carefully controlled strategy, and put a plan in place to nurture them.
If you’d like to learn how your B2B company can benefit from professional copywriting and a content strategy, contact us today for a free revenue operations assessment.
About the Author
Kristin D. Sadler owns Pen & Peacock Professional Writing and is the Senior Content Specialist for Atomic Revenue. She has a BA in Advertising and a 30-year history in sales and marketing. She writes, produces, and edits website content, blogs, landing pages, e-newsletters, e-books, email campaigns, white papers, catalogs, brochures, articles, and more. She has proven results with Atomic Revenue’s client content creation and helps them connect with their target audience by writing engaging copy and finding the SEO sweet spot.