Like many B2B companies, an international company from the intralogistics sector has also undergone a change of heart as a result of the pandemic. We used to be able to meet the sales team at trade shows to talk to customers and prospects. Suddenly, however, this was no longer possible. The loss of the trade show presence left a big gap in sales. New solutions were needed to address the various target groups and to stay in contact.
Thus, the sales department and the management initiated a strategic further development in order to compensate for the deficit. They identified the importance of content marketing and the potential that online channels offer.
In order to expand their digital sales channel, a foundation should be laid as quickly as possible. With a new structure and new, relevant content on the company's website, they not only wanted to attract leads, but above all use it for lead nurturing and qualifying their B2B contacts.
However, the marketing & sales department was not equipped for the numerous tasks ahead. A partner was needed. After a recommendation from the surrounding area, the intralogistics company became aware of Aioma and began implementing the B2B Marketing Automation project in a rush.
Step 1: Pain Point Analysis
The hero in this story has already managed to gain B2B leads for their company in the intralogistics industry via the website. However, the data quality left much to be desired. No recommendations for action could be derived from the website data and the leads languished in the data silo.
This untapped potential - all the leads generated - finally needed to be correctly identified and qualified.
So they were looking for a solution that would help them use the website as a sales channel and also drive lead generation and qualification efficiently. They also wanted to find a solution that would show them an efficient evaluation of the website data. Otherwise, the website would not really be useful for lead generation and qualification, because the visitors would still remain anonymous.
Aioma software addresses exactly these challenges. With simple but clear content reports, marketing departments can quickly discover optimization potential. In combination with the Contact Reports, one gets a better insight into the interest areas of the personas.
In the case of our protagonist, for example, it was quickly determined that the content on the company website still had too strong a product focus. The different personas and the various questions along the customer journey were not addressed in depth. Thus, the decision was made to create different informative theme worlds, which are not product-focused, but address the needs and interests of the personas.
Step 2: Buyer Persona Analysis
To create a theme world for potential customers, the first step is to define the buyer personas. In the buyer persona profile, it is recorded who a typical buyer is, which industry the person comes from, and what his or her areas of activity are. The focus is on the interests and problems (pain points) that the persona has.
With the help of Aioma, the following three personas were identified after an initial analysis and a workshop:
- Planner: Wants a stable and working system to hand over to production a very well functioning system.
- Buyer: Is price sensitive in terms of investment but also running costs. Must recognize added value in the product in order to buy it.
- Technician: Does not want to use anything new; is technically oriented, wants a system that supports him in his work and does not complicate the work.
Once the personas were defined, we could then move on to the next steps of creating exciting theme worlds.
Step 3: Content Audit + Analysis of Existing Content
Every company has already created certain content on the website or offline. This content can either be adapted for an online magazine and serve as an article or be offered as a lead magnet.
In the case of our customer in intralogistics, we were able to offer website visitors free access to the software. The software was previously provided without a form. However, in order to give contacts some context and to be able to support them even after the download, the free access was only made available after a form submission.
Step 4: Content Gap Analysis
The website had no other reusable content besides the software. The available information about the products was only relevant for potential customers who were about to make a purchase. Thus, all articles for the theme worlds had to be newly created in order to address leads at eye level.
The goal of the theme worlds is to also present articles that are written at a lower level and pick up potential customers very early in the customer journey and accompany them step by step through the buying process.
Step 5: Competitor Analysis
After the internal strengths and weaknesses were analyzed, a competitor analysis followed. In order to identify which of the main competitors have which strengths, a list of competitors was jointly created in a workshop and their websites and products were analyzed.
The result of the analysis was astonishing for the company. Among the nine main competitors, only one had a blog with neutral and informative articles on intralogistics topics. Three other competitors had either online webinars in the form of videos, live webinars or a news page where company and product news were also listed. All other competitors only had a website with a listing of products and services and no blog.
Aioma's theory that most B2B companies do not yet have a neutral and informative thematic world and thus do not yet exploit a large part of the customer potential was once again confirmed.
With this starting position, our customer was one step ahead of the majority of its competitors and thus had the chance to further establish itself in the industry with an online blog.
Schritt 6: Keyword & Content Strategie
With the competitor analysis, the first major part of the planning was completed and the active planning of the theme world was started.
At the content strategy kick-off, the first step was to define the main topics that the theme world should cover for the defined target groups.
The next step was to define the most important sub-topics per pillar, i.e. per theme world and per target group, and to develop the content accordingly.
Each article was equipped with a suitable keyword. The keyword had to demonstrate SEO technically a suitable search volume and an appropriate competitiveness in the defined demographic area. Each of the selected keywords was listed in the titles and subtitles, as well as in the body text of the respective articles ,in order to make the article more discoverable on Google. In addition, the keyword selection was also weighed against the fact that keywords that are already strongly occupied by competitors should also be occupied, in order to attract certain readers from the competitor to the company blog. This approach is also described as hijacking and is not uncommon in online marketing.
Step 7: Content Creation
With the content strategy and keywords confirmed, copywriter briefings were then created. These briefings contain the following information:
- Initial Situation
- Buyer Persona
and serve as a guide for the authors.
The intralogistics company quickly confirmed these briefings and thus the first ten articles were created by Aioma authors within two weeks.
The finished articles were then entered into the software by Aioma and sent to the intralogistics company for final review. Aioma also finalized the technical setup and design of the blog so that a reader can navigate between the blog and the company website without any problems.
The first theme world was live within 30 days. Others followed shortly after.
Step 8: Content Distribution PlanningWith content alone, the work is not done. Our client had been publishing manual posts on Facebook and LinkedIn without a social media plan until the time of Aioma and the Theme World.
With the help of Aioma Marketing Automation software, they were able to automate social sequencing on the three channels, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Thus, they can now set up social media posts for more than six months within a few minutes.
Newsletters were also set up. Until then, the company had no newsletter planning and only sent isolated emails to their contacts. With the newsletter automation, personalized newsletters for several months could be set up within a very short time.
With personalized and automated newsletters the following is meant:
- Automatically personalized address in the e-mail text
- Automatic personalized article selection according to the customer journey phase of the contact
- Automatic sending of newsletters to planned contacts at planned time.
The company thus had an excellent digital distribution of the new content and no longer had to actively take care of it.
In a 30-day onboarding phase, our client from the international intralogistics industry received the following content and systematic results:
- Online blog / topic cluster including CI/CD-compliant design
- 10 articles / 2 topic clusters with matching SEO-compliant keywords
- Topic clusters in two languages
- Content plan and strategy for 2 additional topic cluster
- Social sequencing automation for three social media channels
- Newsletter automation with personalization features
The feedback regarding the content quality was positive. They were satisfied with the articles and pleased that the authors were able to reflect the added value of the company in an informative way in the articles.
Of the original requirements, the following could be implemented:
- Generate and qualify leads on the blog
- Evaluate leads on the blog and website; identify customer journey phases of potential customers
- Check and automatically evaluate activities of contacts on the blog and website
- Evaluate the performance of the content; monthly reports with top pages and topics identification has been provided
....and all this in just 30 days for a small effort on the part of our client!
Conclusion: Blogs are underserved in the B2B world
This real-life example shows once again:
B2B companies are still underutilizing their online marketing potential.
Based on this and other B2B companies, it became clear that most of the competitors do not even have a blog yet and thus cannot pick up potential customers who are still in an early stage of the customer journey. In addition, the companies are also not found for the appropriate keywords on Google due to a lack of content. Last but not least, the distribution of content is often not yet planned or is operated manually and sporadically. On the one hand this is very time consuming and on the other hand it does not solve the further problem, the data evaluation.
With Aioma, all these challenges can be overcome at once. The informative yet neutral theme world allows potential customers to approach relevant topics and slowly get to know the B2B company. Enough online content is easily created in a timely manner and distributed to all online channels in an automated and personalized manner. The subsequent activities of the readers can be evaluated and monitored on the Aioma software to address the potential customer at the right time with the appropriate topic.