Imagine walking into a grocery store and finding everything piled up in one gigantic heap in the middle of the store. I’m going to guess that you wouldn’t find this to be a very pleasant experience, especially when you know exactly what you’re looking for, and you want to find it, fast.
Organization is crucial to improving the performance of your B2B content marketing. Every piece of content is an asset, but even the right asset is only useful if it’s available to the right person at the right time.
Content discoverability continues to be a major issue for B2B marketers. According to SiriusDecisions, 60-70% of B2B content sits unused, likely due to the fact that your amazing content is buried within a poor content experience, surrounded by content that isn’t relevant to what a particular user is seeking.
There are a number of ways you can improve your content’s discoverability, including:
- Adding a search bar to your blog or resource center
- Internally linking to related or complementary content
- Implementing a content recommendation engine like BrightInfo
- Strategically placing calls-to-action to subscribe or read more
But, perhaps one of the easiest ways to improve your content’s discoverability is to create multiple entry ways into your content through strategic organization. By organizing your content in multiple ways, you’re providing a more valuable, relevant, and contextual guiding framework that will help your potential buyers discover the content they need as they make their way through the buyer journey.
Here are seven ways you can organize your content to improve its discoverability and meet your content marketing goals.
1. Organize by date
Disclaimer: If you’re letting your content pile up by date, you’re essentially giving it the aforementioned grocery store treatment.
Your most recent blog post or eBook is almost never going to provide the solution that your reader is looking for when they first land on your resource center, so you’re essentially forcing visitors to dig through a bunch of unnecessary (albeit, new) items to find the solution they’re seeking — ain’t nobody got time for that.
However, there are some benefits to providing an option for people to discover your “Latest Content” (especially when your content is also organized strategically using some of the other organization methods listed below). Showcasing your fresh content will indicate that you’re consistently publishing and discussing topics in your industry, thus demonstrating a high degree of relevance. Similarly, it will also help your regular readers and brand advocates easily locate your latest and greatest content.
Again, make sure that this is just one way in which you’re organizing your content so that your evergreen pieces don’t get lost in the rubble.
2. Organize by type
Again, organizing your content by type — segmenting your eBooks, videos, infographics, etc. — shouldn’t be the only way you organize your content for the same reasons why you shouldn’t organize your content only by date.
After all, no one wakes up in the morning thinking, “Gee, today seems like a great day to read a white paper!”
While there is a chance that your audience might enter your resource center in search of a particular webinar recording, this isn't the norm when it comes to search behavior — people seek solutions.
Giving your content the “index” treatment can be helpful for internally keeping your different types of content under control, but remember: you’re not creating content for yourself.
Treat organization by content type similarly to content organization by date — you don’t want it to be the only entry point into your content experience if you want to help people easily discover your content assets.
3. Organize by topic
Mathew Sweezey, author of Marketing Automation for Dummies, points out that people don’t actively want content — they decide to engage with content to solve goals or because it aligns with their purpose, and their purpose is usually highly contextual.
Organizing your content by subject or topic is a better way to assist those who are looking for a particular answer, since you’re providing context for your content, and are aligning it with a particular purpose.
The Convince & Convert blog does an excellent job of organizing its wide scope of social media topics, further breaking them down into strategy, tools, business, measurement, and so on.
Organizing your content by topic is a surefire way to help your readers efficiently find the content they need, simply because it provides more context.
You can take this method of content organization a step deeper by layering on some of the other content organization options below.
4. Organize by vertical
If your product or service touches different markets or niches, you’re probably creating content specifically for each vertical. Obviously, it makes no sense to have all of this content grouped together.
It goes without saying that you should organize your content according to each vertical so that visitors from each vertical are placed in a highly relevant and useful content experience.
Booker’s resource center does a great job of this, breaking out their content specifically to “Salons and Spas” and “Pet Services”.
5. Organize by persona
We all know the importance of creating content for defined buyer personas, but what about assisting your content’s reach to each persona by organizing it accordingly?
This method of organization could be an especially effective option for B2B marketers since three out of four people are motivated to learn online because they want to do their job faster and/or better.
You don’t necessarily have to go so far as to label these segments by their buyer persona names, but if your buyer personas can broadly be considered (for example) content managers, demand gen specialists, and CMOs, consider organizing your content by job title or function.
6. Organize by segment
Similar to organizing your content by topic, vertical, or persona, organizing by segment is another way to provide more context to your content.
For example, at Uberflip, one of the ways we organize our content is by marketing automation segments. From there, we try to make the content experience as relevant as possible, by implementing contextual CTAs that speak specifically to each particular marketing automation tool.
7. Organize by account
Once you’ve identified your key accounts, you can start to leverage your content in your account-based marketing strategy by:
- Creating a content library of relevant content that can be tailored to specific accounts or “account (audience) segments”
- Customizing your premium content to target specific accounts (e.g., personalizing video intros/outros, revamping case studies to speak to the account’s pain points)
- Organizing your content in a marketing stream for each targeted account
Organizing your content by account requires a high degree of personalization, but it will ultimately help empower your sales team and reach key decision makers — now that’s one way to ensure your B2B content doesn’t sit unused.
Your content experience shouldn’t be a maze
Yes, there should be multiple entry points into your content experience, but it as your potential buyer makes their way through your content journey, they shouldn’t hit any irrelevant content “dead ends”. They should easily be able to discover helpful, relevant content when they need to, making the right turns at the right time.
Organize your content strategically to improve discoverability and get more out of your content assets.