6 Ways to Humanise your Content Marketing
Is your content marketing failing to hit the spot? Learn why your content could be missing the ‘human’ element and how to fix it.
Published: 01 Jan 2016
5 minutes read
The secret is out. B2B Content marketing, when done right, will get your business leads. For the majority of B2B companies, it appears that the message has been received loud and clear. At the end of last year, a staggering 93% of B2B companies were using content marketing, with this percentage predicted to be even bigger now.
However, is it simply enough to be doing content marketing? With over 55% of B2B companies unsure whether their efforts are successful – probably not. While there is an exhaustive quantity of content out there in the digital wilderness, a lot of it lacks one simple, yet essential aspect of content marketing. And that is ‘humanisation’.
While B2B by nature is ‘business to business’, it is still real people who will be reading your content. It’s therefore vital to write like one! Here are 6 ways to help you along the road to humanisation:
1. Write for personas
This is the big one. In order to create authentic, personalised and relevant dialogue with your readers, you need to have a clear idea of who they actually are! Persona research will help you uncover typical customer traits. Through researching your existing customers, you will be able to identify common pains, roles and personality traits that will help your content to take shape.
2. Drop the jargon
Your content marketing should be easy to digest. As a content writer, your job is to simplify the information you’re writing about for an audience that may not have as much technical knowhow. So be sure not to overdo the industry jargon and overly complicate your message. While you and your colleagues may communicate in this language, your prospects probably won’t—and are unlikely to waste time trying to figure out what you’re talking about.
3. Avoid keyword stuffing
Real people will ultimately become your customers, not search engines. So excessive keyword usage can hamper readability—and with more prospects becoming aware of these tactics, it’s unlikely that it will go unnoticed. Furthermore, Google penalises sites that overuse keywords, so it really is a lose-lose situation.
Of course, search engine optimisation is essential for getting found by prospects in the first place and keywords are important to SEO, so a natural balance must be achieved. It’s recommended to use a keyword no more than five times on a single page (obviously depending on the size of the web page or blog post), including in your headlines. But if your writing is natural then this should happen easily.
4. Lighten up!
Let’s be honest, B2B can be a lot drier than ‘fun-loving’ B2C. However, this doesn’t mean that your content marketing has to send prospects to sleep. A bit of humour, light-hearted antidotes and conversational tone can help liven up your content and encourage prospects to read the piece in its entirety.
5. Use storytelling
We could all report on statistics and industry insights until the end of time. However, this doesn’t help prospects find out how your solution can help businesses in real life. Storytelling can help ground your content marketing, especially when using real life examples of businesses (which could even be your own) overcoming pains that readers may be currently tackling.
6. Use captivating headlines
Did you know that about 8/10 prospects will read your headlines, while only 2/10 will read the actual blog? If you want to stand a chance of improving this figure, then you need to instantly catch your prospects’ attention.
Open questions in blog titles encourage intrigue, persuading prospects to click and find the answer to the question. Titles that begin with a number also help to appeal to a reader’s desire for certainty. Numbers help prospects manage their expectations, as they are told immediately how much time and learning is required, by the quantity of number points.