Although content has been an important and growing part of any marketing strategy for years, it is often still overlooked, especially when it comes to sales.
The relationship between sales and marketing has long been a complex, and often troubled, one. But in the search for alignment between these two departments, content (and inbound marketing!) can play a key role creating an effective sales and marketing machine.
To address how content marketing can assist your sales team, it is important to first understand the value of content from a marketing perspective.
Why is Content Marketing Important for, Well, Marketing?
The goal of marketing is to drive traffic, capture leads, nurture those leads, and hand them over to sales ready for a relationship. So how does content fit into this goal?
This question is best answered by first looking at the statistics:
- Companies that blog 15+ per month get 5x more traffic than companies that don’t blog.
- Companies that increase blogging from 3-5x/ to 6-8x/month almost double their leads.
- 57% of marketers acquired a customer through their blog.
These statistics point to the fact that not only does consistent blogging increase traffic, leads, but it also results in customers.
And content marketing is not simply about blogging a few times a week. Having compelling website landing pages, engaging nurture emails, and attention grabbing downloadable offers are all important components of a content marketing strategy.
Why is Content Marketing Important for Sales?
But you’re still probably wondering what this has to do with your sales team? How can a piece of content be an important component of your sales team? Plus, it seems as though content marketing does well on its own, why does sales need to be involved?
Because your sales team is frustrated with the content marketing is producing:
- 65% of sales reps say they can’t find content to send to prospects. (This is the most common complaint cited by sales teams.)
- 76% of content marketers are forgetting sales enablement.
The ultimate goal of content marketing is to support your sales team, but as the statistics show that goal is often not being reached.
Here are a 4 ways marketing and sales can come together to create a more effective content marketing strategy:
1. Refine Buyer Personas
While your marketing team may have a good idea of who you’d like to be selling to, it is your sales team who knows who you are actually selling to. This important knowledge can create more specific content that is geared towards attracting the right buyers.
2. Create Nurture Campaigns
A typical misconception about content is that it is simply used to attract an audience. But by creating content for all sales stages, your marketing department is better able to nurture your lead to a place where they are ready to talk to your sales team.
3. Address Common Questions
Your sales team is on the front lines, and they know exactly what types of questions potential customers have. So using this insight can lighten the load for your sales team, and save them from repetition, by addressing those questions in a piece of well-written content.
4. Provide Proof
A great way to prove your value is through a case study that show specific, measurable results that your business has helped previous customers achieve. Content can also demonstrate that your company understands the industry, and keeps up with the latest information. This builds credibility.
Content marketing is an important component of both sales and marketing. It not only attracts leads, but can assist them through the sales funnel. This ensures that your marketing team is having a positive effect on your sales, and that your sales team is focused on actually selling.