47% of buyers view 3-5 pieces of content before engaging with a sales representative. This is according to the 2016 Content Preferences Survey: B2B Buyers Value Content That Offers Data and Analysis. Hows that for lead generation.
The same survey revealed that 96% of respondents wanted content with more input from industry thought leaders. So what form should this content take? Further surveys point firmly towards blogs.
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Expert blogs have traction
A HubSpot report said that B2B marketers who use blogs receive 67% more leads than those that do not while a survey from www.business2community.com also revealed that B2B brands who blog receive 97% more links to their website as readers share the links with colleagues and peers.
Further, a report from TopRank Marketing, Myth-Busting Social Media, SEO & Content Marketing, said blogs are rated as the fifth most trusted source for accurate online information.
Valued by potential customers
Branded content is important because it tells the story, informs customers, reveals important product information and is a channel for updates, event news and so on.
But original content creation, such as an expert blog, is valued by potential customers. They can learn more about a company, how it addresses issues customers face and the business outcome impact of technologies and services.
Blogs are also a great forum for presenting new ideas as well as a medium to showcase customer successes. This is important; the Demand Gen Report mentioned above also revealed that 73% of B2B buyers view a case study during their research. Blogs are the perfect platform to talk about customer stories.
In short, a blog can enable a company to become a leader in thought and opinion which in turn drives greater exposure among potential customers.
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