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Why Content Is Still King – Especially In B2B Tech

A quick search today on LinkedIn reveals that there are more than 266,000 jobs in the United States alone that center around content. Likewise, a similar search with the term “thought leadership” reveals more than 56,000 job openings in the US. Almost 9,000 of those combined positions specify B2B experience, underscoring the vast need that B2B marketing teams have for content creators.

Denise Culver

15th Jun 2021

That’s certainly supported by results from the first survey and report generated from the Tech Marketing Council (TMC), a unique research initiative from the research arm of Sonus Public Relations, in which B2B tech marketers share insights into the challenges they face to effectively market tech products and services.

Deep Thinking: B2B Tech Marketers Share Insights Into What Works – And Doesn’t – For Thought Leadership Content is the inaugural TMC report. The topic of thought leadership was chosen in part because clients of Sonus PR – all of which are B2B tech companies – have struggled to produce quality content and thought leadership. The report is based on answers from more than 60 B2B tech marketers, more than 60% of which hold C-level or VP-level positions in marketing departments and almost half of whom work for companies that provide telco and utility products, hardware and software.

As the report shows, 92% of B2B tech marketers say thought leadership is a priority for their marketing teams. Not surprisingly, respondents said the pandemic pushed the need for thought leadership content into hyperdrive, with more than 50% of TMC members saying they’ve had to produce more thought leadership content since it started.

Yet the biggest challenges that B2B tech marketers face is finding writers who understand and communicate tech well (62%), as well as well as identifying specialists who can effectively communicate with non-technical writers (51%).

PR News wrote a great piece about the report, in which Sonus CEO Martin Smith explained how marketers can overcome these challenges, “I think the major challenge and the major opportunity for tech PR is to do what we call ‘geek-to-human,’ translation, meaning you take somewhat dense and technical content and translate that into language that the target audience will understand.”

Interestingly, 61% of B2B tech marketers said the style of content that delivers the greatest volume of leads is case studies, followed by technical thought leadership (41%). Smith explained that when producing these types of content, it’s easy for marketing teams to be blinded by the tech and take it at face value that the target audience will actually understand.

That accounts – at least in part – on the responses from TMC members when asked to rate the quality of their thought leadership compared to similarly sized competitors. Exactly half of respondents said their thought leadership is somewhat or much better, while the other half said there isn’t much of a difference, their thought leadership isn’t as good or they’re simply not sure.

The next report based on TMC member input focuses on marketing technology (martech), including:

  • What martech is currently in use
  • Which martech they would most like to add
  • How martech is used by their teams
  • Things looked for in martech solutions
  • Current and future budgets
  • Drivers and challenges they face in relation to martech

 

Be sure to download the report and check back soon for the results of the martech survey.

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