For 30 years, our approach to marketing and new business development worked: a mix of targeted outbound efforts – cold calls, mailings, media and blogging – coupled with a robust referral network. But as the business landscape evolved – and our capabilities (and target buyer base) grew – we knew our approach needed to change, too.

To improve lead generation and conversion, we needed a more comprehensive and consistent marketing strategy. It was time we followed the counsel our clients rely on us for: differentiate and strengthen our message and voice, identify our ideal audience, and reach them where they are with the solutions they need.

A robust content marketing strategy was born. And it’s making an impact.

Stern Strategy Group

Industry: PR/Marketing
Services: Content Marketing, Digital Strategy
Learn more: https://insights.sternstrategy.com

The Challenge

Content marketing centers on creating and publishing meaningful content to draw your target audience, usually online. The goal: attract new customers. As expert communicators, we have tons of terrific content – but needed a strategy for sharing it systematically and consistently, and in formats that would bring audiences to us. Convinced content marketing was the right approach, we got to work setting goals around generating leads, driving website traffic, growing social engagement, increasing newsletter effectiveness, and improving blog and content output.

Our content marketing program is proving its value – bringing new contacts into the top of our marketing funnel. We’re well positioned to convert those leads into customers.

Susan Stern, President, Stern Strategy Group

The Process

Segmentation/Buyer Personas:

Core to our content marketing strategy is ensuring we’re targeting – and engaging – the right audiences. We created buyer personas, identifying three of our ideal buyers’ goals, challenges, background, interests and demographics. This helped us home in on their specific needs and problems, and begin to brainstorm the types of content that would resonate with them.

Our content planning focused on each lifecycle stage:

  1. Awareness: problem-focused content (blog posts)
  2. Consideration: solution-based content (downloadable, case studies)
  3. Decision: market products and services (estimates, free trials)

Core to our success was creating content in formats that were easily digestible, shareable, visually appealing, varied, and relevant to the challenges and opportunities facing today’s B2B communicators.

Keyword Research

With help from Google Keyword Planner and Google Trends, our team identified the right mix of long-tail keywords based on those we believe our buyers are searching for. By optimizing our content around specific keywords, we’ve not only elevated our search engine rankings, but also effectively reached our target audience with content that speaks their language.

11 Lessons E-Book
Reputation Marketing White Paper

Content Materials:

Stern Strategy Group’s first content marketing campaign consisted of two compelling pieces of downloadable content: an eBook and whitepaper focused on thought leadership’s role in and impact on reputation marketing – an important issue for communicators and one of our agency’s core competencies. The content was:

  • Driven by landing pages and thank you pages on our website
  • Optimized with keywords
  • Connected with calls-to-actions (CTAs)
  • Supported with blog content
  • Promoted with social advertising
  • Featured in our monthly newsletter
  • Shared by our agency’s leadership team to select clients and prospects
  • Pushed via our social platforms

The Results

At present, sternstrategy.com sees an average of 3,600 visits per month and about 35 leads per month. We’ve exceeded our goals thanks to continued focus on blogging, SEO, social, email and downloadable content. It’s time to raise the content marketing bar!

37
Increase in web traffic
7840
Total blog views
90
New leads generated

Embracing content marketing was an important, but challenging strategic shift for us to make as an organization, but it's beginning to pay off in big ways in terms of website traffic, engagement and leads.

Justin Gianninoto, Director of Digital Strategy, Stern Strategy Group

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