1. The Case Study:
Run a quick poll amongst B2B sales professionals on what they think is the best piece of marketing collateral for closing deals (as Docurated did last year) – and the case study normally comes out on top (followed by client testimonials and powerpoint decks/pdfs.)
A well written case study will continue to be a useful tool for ‘closing’ deals, but what about the sales literature you need higher up the sales funnel. In the technology sector in particular, a longer sales cycle requires more than just a well written case study if you’re to progress ‘from content to customer’ as we like to say at BlogStar.
2. A Personal Blog:
For raising personal credibility and nurturing prospects, there’s nothing that can beat a weekly blog. It can be distributed via social networks and by email, keeping the sales person front of mind until prospects are ready to buy and raising their personal stock.
Most sales professionals see the value in this, but few have the time to create a weekly blog with quality content. This is where a quality blog writing service shows its value – whereby a highly qualified journalist with sector experience ghost-writes on the sales person’s behalf based on agreed synopses derived from an editorial agenda agreed in advance.
ROI of a modest blog writing budget can be easily measured in terms of traffic, engagement, email-sign ups, downloads and ultimately sales. Not least you also get a regular supply of content to feed those thirsty social networks.
Long-form insight documents are the heavy artillery of a content plan. Perfect for creating engagement at the top of the sales funnel (along with blogs) – they are long enough to showcase company expertise in detail and excellent at gathering email sign-ups.
The subject matter can be usefully geared to different parts of the sales funnel so that in follow-up calls, sales people understand where the prospect might be in the buying cycle.
4. Short Guides & Graphics:
Not all downloads need to be 5000 words long to be useful. An illustrated guide can be very useful to demonstrate expertise – particularly when explaining quite complex ideas.
For example, one of the most downloaded guides on BlogStar is just one page long ‘Blog templates – 8 essential design features’
With these three types of sales material, along with those trusty case studies, ideally plugged into a CRM system, sales professionals will be armed from top to bottom of the funnel, not just at the close.
Key though, is finding a good ghost-writing service. Click here to find one 😉