B2B Marketing Ideas: The Skyscraper Technique

There are so many B2B marketing ideas floating around the internet. Some are passing trends and others are evergreen methodologies. One particularly well known strategy, which comes from Backlinko’s Brian Dean, is called the Skyscraper Technique. You may have heard of the Skyscraper Technique before; SEO professionals and inbound marketers often praise its effectiveness. Dean claims his search engine traffic increased 110% after only two weeks after implementing this strategy. Like many B2B marketing ideas, it’s no silver bullet, but is it worth considering for your company?

The Skyscraper Technique is no marketing secret. You might already be doing a similar strategy already. If you have never heard of the strategy, however, here are the basic steps:

Step 1: Lay a Strong Foundation

To start off, you’re going to need to find content worth reading. Begin by finding an article in your industry that has already shown to be buzzworthy. You’re looking for content that has generated social media attention, comments, shares and generally high rankings in Google.

The article you select should cover a popular topic in your industry, but it should also 1) allow you to optimize for a search term your website can reasonably rank for and 2) be a topic you can reasonably approve upon.

Step 2: Build it Tall

Once you’ve found a solid, buzzworthy article, you’ll need to write a better version of it. The Skyscraper Technique is like building a skyscraper: you’ll want to build a taller one than your neighbors.

Make it better. Make it longer. Make it more encompassing. Make it prettier. Make it more current. Make it all-around more impressive than the other articles already available on the web.

Step 3: Have a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

Unfortunately, good content is not enough. Now, the right people need to see it. To begin, you’ll need to identify the industry bloggers, media outlets, customers and aggregate outlets that may be interested in your new article. You’ll also want to make sure they’ve linked to similar content already. The key is finding a primed audience.

Once your media list has been identified, now comes the fun part: content marketing. The success of the Skyscraper Technique comes from pitching to your targeted audience that your new content is worth sharing. When you email these individuals, be sure to ask them to link to your content if they enjoy it.

Dean claims to have an 11% success rate from his email outreach. While that may be a small return, he suggests they were all quality links.

Is it a solid strategy?

Taking existing content, making it better and reaching out to the right people – a simple strategy that any company, big or small, can utilize. Right?

The effectiveness of most B2B marketing ideas is contested widely on the web, and this one is no exception. Some marketers will swear by this technique. Several case studies have even shown better results than Dean’s. However, the technique is not without its critics. It’s up to you to decide if the pros outweigh the cons.

Pros

You’ve made better content. Even if nothing else worked, you still have something better than your competitors — and that helps position you as a thought leader in your industry. Besides that, fresh content will always be beneficial for your SEO.

You’ve also made new contacts in your industry. Compiling your media list definitely ate up some time but, whether they respond positively or not, you still have the excuse of your content to make contact with other industry influencers. At the end of the day, your network is still your networth. Am I right?

Cons

The Skyscraper Technique might not work so great for fledgling sites. According to Dale Cudmore from Ahrefs and our friends from howtostartablogonline.net, this strategy worked well for Dean because he had a considerable advantage prior to beginning the technique. His site, Backlinko, has a domain authority of 76. That’s more than most of us can say.

Competing against high domain authority sites can be difficult. If you’re expecting to be on the coveted first page of search results, you will likely be disappointed. High difficulty keywords will still play a major role in your site’s ability to rank. If your site is smaller, consider practicing this strategy on a search term with low difficulty.

Of course, the Skyscraper Technique is not the only SEO strategy you can be using. Other B2B marketing ideas also have the potential to increase search visibility and domain authority. If SEO and content marketing is something your company has been struggling with, give us a call. Brandcave can help improve your rankings and many other aspects of your inbound marketing strategy.

The Importance of Content Marketing

With 67% of B2B buyers relying on digital content to research and make purchasing decisions, the importance of content marketing seems like a no brainer. Like a dealership without a car salesman, content marketing produces the kind of marketing material that buyers want: entertaining, educational and largely non-branded.

Content marketing can be tailored for any part of the buyer’s journey. Here are some key ways content marketing can be important to your B2B marketing strategy.

Content Marketing Can Entertain

Let’s say you’re a B2B marketer. Your services are great and now you have an eCommerce website to show prospects all the different services you can do. The problem is, so do hundreds of other B2B marketers. How do you make them aware of you? And, more importantly, how do you make them remember you? The first step may be producing entertaining content.

The key to entertaining your audience is to appeal to their emotions. Make them curious, laugh or even cry (cue Sarah McLachlan). As a marketer, you might produce a new video such as “The Top 10 Dumbest Terms our Industry Created This Year” or an article such as “B2B Marketing Tips You Need to Stop Following.” Whatever you decide to do, make it worth watching, reading and sharing. On this note, your website’s content needs to be easily shared. When your prospects share your content, they generate awareness and virality. It’s a sales funnel and not a sales tube, after all.

Content Marketing Can Educate

Educational content can often work hand-in-hand with entertaining content. And, while it can be entertaining, educational content has the primary role of informing your audience about your product, services or industry. It is great for prospects at the top of the sales funnel as they are researching information about companies like yours.

Educational content takes on many forms. In your company, you might provide a helpful guide to your prospects on determining which social media platforms are right for their businesses or provide information on how to craft the perfect LinkedIn profile. It’s important that educational content represents a learning opportunity for your prospects because, while it grabs those prospects at the awareness stage, it also guides others further down the funnel. Making them laugh at this point won’t help you much – they’re already interested – and now they’re thinking.

Content Marketing to Persuade and Convert

Only after you have both thoroughly entertained and educated your audience have you earned the right to discuss your product or service offerings. Now, you can begin persuading them to convert into customers. A call to action, or CTA, can be a very persuasive piece of content to have alongside a video or blog post if you do it right. Depending on their place in the sales funnel, you might ask them to subscribe to your email list or download your eBook. Just be sure that your prospects know what they will be receiving and that it will be worth receiving.

Now is the moment you’ve been waiting for: tell them about you. What services do you offer? How are they unique from your competitors? How do they improve compliance? How do they minimize risk? This content needs to pull your prospects the rest of the way through the funnel. To convert them into customers, they need to be informed and ready to make a purchasing decision.

A good content marketing strategy should curb the sales pitch, engage your audience and guide potential customers through the conversion process. But, at the heart of this strategy is a need for great content. If you can create things that entertain, educate, persuade and convert your prospects, they just might come out the other side as brand new customers.

Now that you understand the importance of content marketing for your company, join the 80% of B2B marketers that have a content marketing strategy and start converting leads. A content marketing strategy is more than just a regularly updated blog, a popular video or a social media presence – it’s all of that and more. Brandcave does an excellent job of tailoring the perfect strategy to meet your needs. If you’re curious to learn more about how our team can create relevant and engaging content for your business or service, give us a call.

Content Marketing: The New Royal Family

In 1996, Bill Gates wrote and published an article titled, “Content is King.”

“Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the internet, just as it was in broadcasting,” wrote Gates. Well, Bill, as per usual, you, sir, were ahead of your time. Today, the ability to produce valuable content is not only a desirable skill; it’s an essential one.

But what does this mean for us as marketers? Well, if content is king then marketing is its queen. It’s a happy marriage but with her keen eye for strategy, marketing rules the roost. So how do these two work so well together? What is this content marketing you’ve been hearing so much about? We’re glad you asked!

Simply put, content marketing is the creation and distribution of content for a targeted audience with the goal of attracting new customers and reaching business goals. It is the use of blog posts, eBooks, slide decks and videos to compete in the new buyer-driven market. Thanks to TiVo and shortening attention spans, gone are they days when intrusive advertisements were effective. Now, it’s up to marketers to meet the consumers right where they are – online.

On top of generating leads, content marketing can help you increase visibility for your organization, aid in SEO, optimize your website or blog with long-tail keywords and create backlinks to your site. With that being said, for content marketing to be successful, the content most be valuable.

To be valuable, content must be three things: relevant, informative and consistent. The goal is never to produce collateral that sells your product or service but instead craft an article that provides applicable knowledge to the reader. Ideally, if you present yourself as a knowledgeable source and continue to deliver this type of content, the prospective customer will reward you with their business. Think of it as a “you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” agreement.

All of this work will be for naught, however, if you fail to create a solid distribution strategy. Your distribution strategy should not be treated as an after thought but instead be an integral step during your planning phase. Haphazard distribution will only serve to garner less than adequate results. Choosing the appropriate channel to distribute your content is crucial to its success.

The three main categories of channels include:

Owned media: Any channel owned and operated by your organization including social media pages, websites, blogs, email lists and more. This is your bread and butter. The majority of your time and resources will be spent here.

Earned media: Includes any pick up your content gets by media channels, influencers or your social audience. This can also include guest blogging for an influential site in your market. While highly valuable, this is the hardest channel to access.

Paid media: Promoting your content with paid social ads on Twitter and Facebook. This will account for a smaller percentage of your time and resources.

By now you must be wondering how you turn readers into leads. For that, we’ll need to discuss un-gated and gated content. Un-gated content includes any content that you give to your customers and prospects, no-strings-attached. This usually includes your blog and other information on your website pages. This is where you show your expertise and present your self as a knowledgeable and trustworthy source. It gets your readers going down the road towards your gated content.

Gated content is where you can finally gather these leads. Gated content includes anything from videos to white papers. In order to access this higher value content, prospects must provide you with information about themselves – voila, leads! While you should always, at least, require their name and email address, the higher the value of the content, the more information you can ask the prospect to divulge. The more information you have about them, the more you will be able to target your content and nurture your leads thus inching them along in the buying process. Once the lead becomes a customer, you can return to providing them un-gated content to help engage, reaffirm and possibly pave the way to an upsell.

If you have already implemented a content marketing strategy, take some time to evaluate the elements. Is your content providing valuable, insightful information or is it often full of fluff and sales jargon? Are you using the correct legs to disseminate information? Are you giving away valuable content for free? When implemented with strategtic thinking and clear goals, content marketing can be a highly effective tool for your organization. After all, content is king and who wouldn’t want royalty in their corner?

How to Blog Effectively

Your blog is often the first page of your website that perspective clients stumble upon. It’s the perfect place for you to showcase your expertise and disseminate company news. However, it’s not as simple as just throwing together few haphazard paragraphs and calling it a day. Successful blogs take research, time and careful cultivation. There are a several key elements that can make or break the success of your blog.

If you’ve been following our blog up until now you may be asking, “Hey Brandcave, how do you guys write such awesome posts?” Well, fear not, loyal reader. We’re about to tell you. By the end of this post, you’ll know how to blog effectively!

Choose a Target.

Establishing a target demographic is crucial to the success of your blog. The target audience you choose will shape the topics you cover as well as the voice you use. When deciding on a demographic, ask yourself three questions: who are we wanting to buy our product or service, what are their needs and concerns, and how can we help? Knowing this information can help you form the profile of your ideal reader and ultimately shape the type of topics you will cover.

Make Your Topic Relevant.

As discussed above, topics should be built to serve your target audience. Readers should always walk away from the blog with the feeling that they have learned something. The key here is relevancy and variety. You will want to cover topics that meet a day-to-day need of the potential client as well as topics that show your high-level industry knowledge. For example, including a blog that discusses how to draft an awesome eBook right alongside a post covering the current state of the content marketing industry would give readers a nice range.

Plan Ahead.

There is nothing more dangerous than starting out with an empty word document. A lack of research and preparation can result in a lack of purpose. Creating an editorial calendar can help you keep track of what topics you’ve covered, what research has been done and what keywords have been used. Decide ahead of time what keywords will most effectively serve your purpose. This is also the time to decide on what other content you will link to in your blog. (Pro tip: linking to other articles on and off your site can help you establish your credibility). This will also help you be prepared should a topic fall through. A blog is a constantly evolving item but there should be clear goals set in place to guide you through the changes.

Be Consistent.

Make choices and stick with them. Even if you have several employees drafting posts, make sure each post follows the same format, uses the same voice and stays consistent with your brand. Your posting schedule should remain consistent as well. Readers should be able to count on you to post routinely. Posting erratically can cause visitors to lose interest quickly.

Add a Call-to-Action.

The most effective blogs operate as a two-way street to benefit both you and the visitor. Not only can they provide information to the reader but they can be used a means for you to gather information about the reader. Common call-to-actions include signing up for a newsletter, filling out a contact form or filling out a form to access a more in-depth asset like an eBook. When relevant, you can also use this space at the bottom of your blog to direct users to other pages in your website like a products, services or solutions page.

Want to learn how to blog effectively? Following these tips. If you’re already blogging, don’t worry! You can easily incorporate these elements into your current practices. Just remember, decide where your audience wants to go, show them how to get there and then direct them forward.