Making Content Marketing Work for Channel Partners

Michael Marchese

Channel partners have long sales cycles, which often can stretch out as far as 18 months before a sale is consummated.  Content marketing can be a powerful sales and conversion driver.  Find out how this fast-growing area of digital marketing can rev up your partner sales engine.

What is custom content marketing?

Content marketing is a concept wherein a company publishes any form of content (whether it be a blog post, white paper, infographic, etc.) in order to engage with existing customers and to showcase expertise to new customers.

According to the Content Marketing Institute, “Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach […] to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.” The key word here is “profitable”. Companies that are not utilizing this marketing technique are losing out on a huge opportunity for revenue.

Custom content also serves as a useful tool in communicating the value of a product. It gives companies a chance to have an open conversation with consumers about what their company does and who their company is.

Simply put, content gives companies a branded voice. Custom content marketing has given companies an effective communication method for reinforcing their brand, explaining the value of their product and fostering B2C relationships. Ultimately, this improved communication results in ROI.

Why is custom content important to technology value-added resellers (VARs)?

Beyond knowing what custom content marketing is, you must know why this marketing strategy is important to your company – and how it will help your bottom line.

It drives leads

A key starting point for generating consistent revenue is driving leads. According to Forbes contributor Michael Templeman, “there are tactics in content marketing that don’t require a lot of time to deploy, and can generate immediate leads for your company.”

Consumers are inherently curious. They like to make comparisons, ask questions, and get to know a brand before making a purchasing decision. In utilizing custom content, companies are able to help satiate this curiosity quickly and easily, improving their lead generation.  

Growth in leads may give you a reason to believe this marketing strategy will require a bigger budget. However, as the Content Marketing Institute points out, content marketing costs 62% less than outbound marketing – and it generates more than three times as many leads.

It increases revenue

While driving leads is a good starting point, driving sales is what makes companies profitable. Many marketing techniques can easily drive leads, but landing conversions often require a bit more finesse. As Forbes contributor, Gabriel Shaoolian observes, “Content marketing must be built and nurtured over time, and it must be designed with conversion potential in mind.” Providing meaningful and valuable content helps turn your leads into sales.

VARs are capable of seeing this valuable sales growth by following a very simple concept - foster genuine relationships with customers. Content marketing answers questions, provides guidance and opens a dialogue. When potential customers see this honest effort and authenticity, a mutual respect is formed.

This open dialogue also grants you the ability to implement nurturing techniques. In listening and responding to consumer needs, you will successfully engage new customers by providing a positive first experience. This nurturing culture aimed at new customers increases the likelihood of acquiring new brand loyalists.

It helps you retain your customers

“While there are many different ways a company can improve retention, there should be one focus: the needs of the customer,” says SEO.com. The needs of the customer often fall by the wayside with other marketing techniques. Content marketing gives companies a beneficial opportunity to focus on existing customers.

Creating conversations and driving more engagement happens when you specifically ask what your customers want to know. Providing them with answers in the form of content shows you are here to answer their needs. By consistently proving your expertise, customer loyalty will grow, and, as a result, so too will customer retention.

The bottom line is that engaging in custom content marketing will drive leads, increase sales, and improve customer retention – ultimately improving your own bottom line.

Up next

In part two of our blog series, we’ll cover the specific, actionable tactics that you can take to start driving results with content marketing.

Want to learn more on this topic in the meantime? Check out our recorded webcast titled A Modern Take on Content Marketing for Channel Marketers

 

Sources:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/miketempleman/2016/03/31/quick-content-marketing-strategies-that-drive-leads/#22182b2e2ff1

https://www.forbes.com/sites/joshsteimle/2014/09/19/what-is-content-marketing/#37dae2b810b9

http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/what-is-content-marketing/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/gabrielshaoolian/2017/06/29/content-marketing-musts-5-keys-to-driving-sales-with-content/#7335e0d5c59c

Content Creation, Content Marketing

Michael Marchese

Posted By: Michael Marchese

Michael Marchese is Founder and CEO of Tempesta Media, a leading content and influencer marketing platform. He is responsible for corporate strategy, executive team leadership, and overall business operations across all the company’s segments.

Mr. Marchese’s experience spans over 20 years, having held various strategic and operating positions at companies including Leapfrog Online (acquired by Dentsu, Inc. [OTC: DNTUF]) , WebSideStory (now part of Adobe, Inc. [NASDAQ: ADBE]) , OCC (now part of Monster Worldwide, Inc. [NYSE: MWW]) and JWT Specialized Communications (subsidiary of WPP, Plc. [NASDAQ: WPPGY]). As a recognized digital marketing expert, he has served on numerous industry committees for SEMPO, IAB, and the MMA.

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