As B2B online marketers, creating new, socially shareable content to generate leads and sales is a huge part of our jobs. It’s not always easy to come up with highly engaging tweets or status updates, and it can be even harder to correlate that activity to leads or sales due to a complex B2B sales cycle. However, social content extends beyond the popular social platforms. Traditional marketing materials can easily be converted into socially shareable ones! Here are five types of content to share socially.
1. Slideshare Presentations
Turn the Powerpoint on it’s head! Create short and simple presentations and upload them to Slideshare. In the last slide include a call-to-action for the viewer to get something additional. When they click the link, they leave the presentation and arrive at a landing page with a short form, in order to receive something else of value.
I’m a firm believer that most marketing content should be free and readily accessible without registration, but only until you prove that you can provide value. Once you’ve done this, there’s no reason not to move on to the next step and ask for something in return for your content. Asking for basic contact information is usually that first step.
Slideshare makes it easy to tweet, like or Facebook share links to each presentation. They track the most shared presentations on Twitter and Facebook and will feature your presentation on the home page or a channel page if it is really popular. They alert you with an e-mail that says “your presentation is hot on Facebook.” This is very exciting if you’re a social marketer. It always makes my day!
2. White Papers
White papers have long been used for lead generation. We hide them behind a form and ask for contact information in exchange for sharing industry knowledge. However, how many more people would view the white paper if there was no form to fill out?
It may seem scary to free your white paper from its cage because publishing a white paper is traditionally a lead generation tactic. But putting it in front of the form ensures that more people will see it. The white paper also then becomes a lot more socially sharable. Just include a call to action at the end of the paper that leads to a form where you can collect contact information.
You can also embed the @Anywhere Tweetbox app on Thank You pages to add an even more social element.
Video marketing can be used to directly drive leads and sales. This is a great post by Jay Baer on how to humanize your brand with video.
Include a nice big call to action at the end of the video to drive the viewers to a landing page. This way, you can continue the conversation and, ask for contact info via a form or even get them to buy something directly.
And don’t forget to give viewers the opportunity to share the video socially with a tweet or LinkedIn/Facebook share.
Think of these as mini white papers. They can be Top 10 type guides that are a little meatier than a blog post, or they can be introductory type guides that introduce beginners to a complex topic.
At ion, our mini guides are about 1-3 pages long, but may be longer if we include a lot of visual examples. The Guide to Online Testing is our longest at 14 pages.
Mini guides can be used in the same way white papers are, but require less time on the part of the content creator. Set up a schedule where you’re creating one full-fledged white paper every quarter, but also producing a mini guide once per month. Depending on how big or small your marketing department is, you can adjust that schedule accordingly. The important thing is to constantly be creating new, valuable, consumable content that can be shared socially.
5. Blog Posts
Blog posts are a great way to generate traffic and interest in your products or services, so don’t miss that opportunity to capture leads from them. Why not add a call-to-action at the end of a few posts to direct your blog readers onto the next step of a long and healthy relationship with you.
Those are my five favorite ways to drive leads and sales with content and social marketing. What are your favorite ways to make your marketing content social?