Why 80% of our B2B content marketing fails

Like many companies, in the last 12 months, the main focus of our marketing strategy was to produce content. And lots of it; which is why 80% of their marketing failed.


Doctors are no different than any other business person who are regularly trying to generate more business; but, the messages you send your current, past and future patient has to be on point.  Otherwise, having poor content just lead to marketing that fails.

Recently, author Chris Sheen wrote a very interesting piece in econsultancy.com, regarding the issue of business development, specifically on the topic of content marketing, titled “Why 80% of our B2B content marketing failed” were he breaks down some very specific points regarding the type of content businesses produce that completely miss the mark.

Mr. Sheen writes that upon further inspection, it turns out marketing professionals might have been focusing on the wrong metrics.

So whether you’re a B2C (business-to-consumer, denoting trade conducted via the Internet between businesses and consumers) marketer or B2B (business-to-business, denoting trade conducted via the Internet between businesses)marketer like myself, you’re probably under a fair amount of pressure to produce content.

Bill Gates famously declared that “Content is King” back in 1996 (yep, 20 years Saying the wrong thingago!) while more recently, respected marketers like Ann Handley have taught us that the best content is useful, enjoyable and inspired.

They are sentiments I happen to agree with.

Which is why I tasked our marketing team with increasing the amount of content we published for our blog ‘The Abandoned Cart’ in 2015.

And the team delivered. We went from an average of one piece of new content per week in 2014 to two or three in 2015.

While we were high fiving each other feeling like we’d done a great job – we missed an important question… who cares? 

The number of new blogs, videos and stories we publish is a great vanity metric for us to point at as a marketing team. And yeah, it looks great on a graph…

…but it misses the point of our blog! Our goal has always been to publish content which:

  • Educates – using our data and experience in our marketplace;
  • Informs – through the use of stories and real client examples;
  • and Engages – making people smile with our tone and style.

In focusing so much on increasing our content output, we lost focus on the type of content that delivers on all of those things. More quantity, yes. But less ‘relevant’ quality.

I thought it would be valuable to share the two big lessons we learned from pouring over the data and how we planned to turn it around.

1) Pareto was right. Annoyingly.

It turns out that although we increased our output; a lot of our new content and ideas weren’t resonating with our audience.

They simply weren’t clicking or sharing as much as they had in the past.

Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto famously said that “80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.”

Applied to our content metrics, where ‘effects’ are page views and ‘causes’ are blog posts, we found that his 120 year old principal still rang pretty true.

The article brings up some exceptional points; a must read!  In fact to read the entire article, simply click here.  In fact, we assist many business professionals with this very issue.  If you like our help, let us know.


Brought to you from the desk of Steve Cox, co-founder of StevenVonLoren.com  Direct: 916.750.6319; Personal email: stevenvonloren@yahoo.com

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3 Replies to “Why 80% of our B2B content marketing fails”

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