It’s tough being in B2B sales these days. Whether you’re in a “hunter” or a “closer” role, it always seems as though there are never enough hours in a day, days in a month, or months in a year.
Between calls, emails, demos, team meetings, sales training, and everything else, it can get difficult to solely focus efforts on what matters: driving pipeline and revenue for our businesses.
So you must be asking yourself, "Why is the title of this blog post telling me to add another time-consuming activity to my already busy day? Why is this guy trying to turn me into a marketer? Why am I still reading this?"
Because it works.
Content marketing has been a staple in B2B businesses (and pretty much everywhere else) for a while now. Entire groups within marketing teams are devoted to storytelling and content strategy.
But what about leveraging content throughout the entire buyer journey and sales cycle? And I don’t mean sending over a generic pitch deck after a cold call. On top of truly leveraging the content that your marketing team creates, I think to be truly successful in today’s sales environment, we need to take it a step further.
Salespeople should create original content
This is not a new or revolutionary idea, but it’s definitely uncommon amongst most reps, so let’s look at a few reasons why this might be a good idea for you to incorporate.
But, before I do that, I want to be clear that it’s possible to create content without sacrificing your one true responsibility: selling. I’m not asking you to take a 2-hour chunk out of your day (selling time!) to brainstorm a topic, develop a structure for your post, and begin writing.
In fact, I’m writing this article in my favorite writing environment: my bed with a cold beer beside me and music playing quietly in the background. Not when I should be making calls. Not when I need to be thinking about an upcoming prospect meeting. Not when my attention is required elsewhere.
Now that that’s out of the way, here are some reasons why salespeople should create original content:
Be perceived as a thought leader
Don’t we all want to be perceived to be experts in our field? The best way to do this is by demonstrating your knowledge on a particular topic or subject within your space.
Build your personal brand
By blogging, you can start building up a library of different topics that you enjoy discussing and are passionate about. With enough content, over time, you can build up a following who views you as an expert in X topic which can help lead to better conversations and networking.
Stand out from the noise
There aren't many reps who spend their time creating content, so if you do, it can help you rise above the rest. One of my best-performing blog posts, How NOT to Sell to Marketers, actually ended up helping me do just that. Its novelty and no-nonsense tone helped it stand out and ultimately created an opp that turned into a new Uberflip customer!
Hone your storytelling skills
By taking the time to sit down and write out your thoughts, you can take a step back and look at exactly what you're saying. You may find that once you read what you've written back to yourself, it could possibly be said better. When you're constantly on the phone, you don't always have the opportunity to go back and really analyze what you're saying. Writing gives you that extra insight into your thought process and can help you perfect your messaging over time.
Add value (ABH)
We often get lectured to always be closing (ABC), but through content creation, we are able to add another level to our conversations with prospects and always be helping (ABH). Our prospects can start to see that we really do want to provide them with the best ammo to help them succeed.
When you create content, add CTAs to your blog posts or links to your social channels so people can reach out to you. If people like your work, they will be more comfortable speaking with you and can ultimately lead to stronger opps.
At the end of the day, we're here to drive more sales for our business. By beginning to be thought leaders through our content, we can start connecting with our readers, strike up meaningful conversations, and eventually create more engaged customers.
Content isn't just for the marketing team. It's valuable at every stage of the buyer's journey and the sooner you get on board, the sooner you'll start seeing its value.
Check out other ways that content can help the sales process with these 6 ways to empower your sales team with content.
About the Author
Adam is the Sales Development Team Lead at Uberflip. Prior to joining Uberflip, Adam worked as a Marketing Manager at Toronto's Venture Accelerator Partners. He holds a HBBA Degree from Wilfrid Laurier University where he concentrated his studies in Entrepreneurship & Marketing. When Adam isn't working, you can likely find him around a baseball diamond, hockey rink, squash court or a pub with good beer and live music.Follow on Twitter More Content by Adam Brophy