It’s no wonder B2B marketers tout the many benefits of content syndication: it’s one of the most cost-effective ways to generate quality leads.
When done right, syndication takes your top-performing content, puts it directly in front of new audiences who are likely to buy your product or service, and gives them a clear path to becoming a customer.
But what does it take to get there? Just a little strategic planning—six steps, to be exact.
Six steps to drive quality leads with content syndication
Before you start syndicating content, you need to straighten out a few things. Number one, you need a clear understanding of your target audience—even better if you can lock down your ideal customer profile (ICP). Then, number two, you need to identify the most relevant content for this audience and pinpoint their most preferred channels of communication. And finally, number three, you need a plan in place to initiate outreach and nurture all the leads you’ll generate from your content syndication efforts. Once those three things are in order, you’ll have a fool-proof path toward high-quality lead generation via content syndication.
Here’s are six steps you should take to ensure your content syndication program is well-positioned for top-notch lead gen:
#1 – Get crystal clear on your ICP
In order to generate quality leads with conversion potential, you’ve got to know your target customers: who they are, what they do, and what solutions they need to solve existing business challenges. So, it’s absolute must to nail down your ideal buyer persona.
Your ICP is a comprehensive sketch of your preferred customer—the buyer most likely to find value in your product or service. It could be a comprehensive breakdown of your targeted accounts or individual customers, but it functions just the same in helping you identify those best suited to your product offerings.
Developing an ICP requires collaboration across departments so that everyone in the organization can agree on what criteria establishes an ideal buyer. While marketing and sales teams can drive the conversation, make sure to gather input from account managers and customer success teams, as well. This way, you can see who, among current customers, has the highest lifetime values and renewal rates. Put all this info together, and you come away with a pretty clear picture of your most ideal buyer(s).
For B2B sales organizations especially, make sure your ICP includes key insights to determine your preferred buyers’:
- Industry type
- Company size
- Annual revenue
- Geographic location
- Current tech stack
- Technology challenges
Ultimately, your ICP should function as your north star, allowing you to suss out which kinds of companies or buyer personas you should target through content syndication.
Still, keep in mind: with content syndication, you’ll likely reach audiences outside the strict confines of your ICP, but that’s ok. In fact, the wider reach you can get, the better—you’ll have more opportunities to explore. Just remember to use that ICP as a guide to identify the more quality leads of the bunch. It also helps you focus your campaigns on more relevant audiences.
#2 – Take the ABM approach
Once you have a solid ICP in place, take an ABM approach to your content syndication efforts. This allows you to connect with ideal accounts on a more granular basis, which benefits you in two ways. One, account-based marketing provides an efficient framework for developing effective, relevant communication strategies with preferred buyers. And two, it helps you prioritize accounts that more closely reflect your sales-ready criteria.
To start, compile a list of companies that align with the guidelines of your target accounts. Then dig into your data to zero in on those organizations with the most potential to benefit from your products. Be meticulous with your research and make sure to leverage the following data:
What types of tech solutions do your target companies currently employ? And can your solution help optimize their existing tech stack? You can easily find these answers by adding technographic insights to your research. This information gives you a clear understanding of how target companies use technology, whether they already employ a tech solution from one of your competitors, or if they have a need your product can readily provide. Based on these insights, you can determine which target companies have the most potential to benefit from your product offerings.
Look to your CRM—do you have any contact data of individuals from your target accounts? If so, see what information you can glean from these records. When was the last time they engaged with your marketing content or interacted with another sales rep? And what types of content have they engaged with most? By putting these clues together, you can gauge which accounts pose the most potential for conversion. You can also determine the most effective content syndication strategy for each individual account. You’ll know which content types and topics resonate most with your buyer contacts so you can build a customized syndication plan to drive quality leads.
There’s really no better way to spot high purchase probability among target accounts than by adding intent data to your ABM efforts. Source as many behavioral signals as you can find, whether that’s through first, second, or third-party intent data. Then analyze this info to get a gauge on prospects’ interest levels and overall purchase intent. Behavioral signals like ad clicks, keyword searches, website visits, or social media interactions not only inform you of prospects’ topical interests; they also showcase serious consideration into what you have to offer.
With content syndication, you can use these account-specific insights to get incredibly precise with your distribution efforts, especially when you opt to work with a paid content syndication vendor. These paid partners use the info to better inform their targeting and drive the best results possible.
#3 – Choose the most relevant content to engage the right leads
With a clearly documented ICP and list of target accounts, you can start to select the most relevant pieces of content to engage your audience and generate high-quality leads through syndication. But remember the golden rule: the content you choose to syndicate must add value to the buyer’s journey.
Choose content that’s valuable, helpful, and demonstrates a clear understanding of your ICP’s industry, business needs, and existing pain points. Essentially, you want your content to serve as a guide to help navigate your customers’ respective purchase paths.
#4 – Select your ideal distribution channels
If you work with a paid syndication vendor, there’s no need to worry about choosing your best possible distribution channels—they’ve got that covered. Simply provide your partner with data and insights you’ve gathered on your target accounts, and they’ll find the most relevant, results-driven platforms to share your content.
However, if you choose to manage content syndication in-house, all that legwork will be on you. That said, you’ll want to find the most optimal channels for your content (i.e., social media platforms, publication networks, etc.) that resonate with target audiences.
You can also explore co-marketing partnerships with other companies that serve your ICP, but don’t compete with your own product or service. Collaborating on whitepapers or co-hosting webinars can both generate and distribute content that’s relevant to your shared audience.
And while guest posting usually requires you to create new content as opposed to repurposing what you already have, it’s another useful way to build relationships with publications that might want to syndicate content for you in the future.
#5 – Create a nurture program to further qualify your leads
Since content syndication typically generates leads in the initial stages of the customer journey, you’ll need to nurture them further with additional content to further qualify them for sales outreach. So, before you even start to count your MQLs, make sure you have a nurture strategy in place to help guide leads further down the sales funnel.
As a starting point, consider any assets they’ve downloaded and choose additional pieces of content that naturally continue the narrative or delve into certain topics on a more granular level. Then, initiate outreach and include these secondary assets to provide continued support for their customer journey. Better yet, you can even glean extra insights, like what kind of subject lines result in the highest open rates, or what other links your leads click along the way. This information can help tailor your nature strategy and help segment leads more precisely throughout the process.
As leads continue to engage with your content, gradually introduce more definitive messaging around your products while sharing mid- to bottom-funnel assets like case studies, solution comparisons, and customer reviews.
#6 – Establish parameters for sales follow-up
As leads move onwards in the customer journey, use a lead scoring model to assign points to specific actions they take along the way. Once a lead attains a predetermined threshold of points declaring them “sales ready,” it’s time to hand them over to a designated sales rep.
Now, the points system is key here, as it determines who, among your total number of leads, show the highest potential for conversion. Here are a few examples of how leads can be assessed in the nurturing process:
|Actions to consider
|Points to assign per action
|Lead views pricing page: +15
|Frequent visits to website
|Continued website visits: +3 for each visit
|Case study download: +20
|Attending an event
|Webinar attendee: +25
|Using live chat capability
|Chat inquiry: +100
|Filling out form inquiries
|Form inquiry: +100
|Email open: +1
|Clicking on an email
|Email click: +3
|Viewing a video
|Video view: +20
Sales reps can analyze these behaviors to pinpoint exactly which leads show genuine purchase intent and appear to be prime for sales interaction. And this data-driven prioritization ups your chances at driving conversion and valuable marketing revenue.
Supercharge your content syndication strategy
With this kind of strategic thinking in place, you’ll be in the perfect position to kickstart an effective content syndication program for your B2B business, driving top-notch leads to pad your pipeline with high-priority sales opportunities.
But, if you’re not quite ready to make the leap into content syndication, don’t worry—we’ve got you covered. Check out our on-demand webinar and learn how to rollout a successful content syndication campaign in just a few simple steps.
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