Live from MarketingProfs B2B: Moving From the ‘Why?’ to the ‘How?’ of Content Marketing

By Lindsay Keller | Oct 4, 2012
More Articles by Lindsay

There is so much buzz around content marketing in the industry right now. You may be convinced that content marketing is the way to go, but how do you sell the idea to upper management? How do you build a successful marketing team and execute an effective content marketing strategy? It’s time to move from the “why?” to the “how?” of content marketing.

During this session Michael Brenner, Sr. Director of Global Marketing and Content Strategy at SAP, discusses why you need a content marketing strategy, how to build a content strategy framework, and tips on delivering real results through content marketing. Brenner delivered great points on how to use content marketing to drive real business results and I’ve got the live coverage for you!

Interesting facts showing the rapid decline of results for traditional marketing:

  • Two‐thirds of Americans have joined the U.S. “Do Not Call” list
  • 86% of people skip television ads
  • 44% of direct mail is never opened
  • 90% of emails are never opened and 99.5% don’t produce even a single click

So what is marketing? “The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself…” – Milan Kundera

With that said, one of SAP’s biggest challenges was driving people to their site that have never heard of their brand.  Ask yourself, “how much “early stage” search traffic do we get? CEOs get the value of reaching people that have never heard of your brand or company.

Before SAP started content marketing, 3 in every 10,000 people who visited their site were people that didn’t already know about SAP. Less than 0.1% of traffic was from non-product or brand related keywords.

To drive leads, content needs to get FOUND and SHARED. Think about your customers and find out what the content they are looking for is and share it through the channels they go to.

Created, Curated, and Syndicated Content. SAP created a subdomain with content that had a subtle branding approach that serves as a space to share educational NOT promotional content. While this online asset didn’t serve as a hard sale, it brought in traffic that SAP would have never seen.

Curating Authors. Pick a topic and see who is influential on that topic and syndicate their content on your site. Those authors get credit for being the original creator of the content through rel author tags and get an inbound link to their original post.

What kind of content should I create? Some popular article topics that SAP found with 10 times the average page views include:

  • Top 50 Influencers
  • Top 10 Blog Sites
  • Terms You Need To Know
  • Myths…Busted
  • 10 Predictions for…
  • What is…?
  • The First Step to Success in…
  • How To Get Ahead With…


  • Build a team that can create content at scale and share, share, share.
  • There needs to be a balance between providing quality content and using the hard sell. Customers don’t want to hear from just you. It is good to be seen as a credible source of external information that is helpful for your customers.
  • Determine valuable content offerings that appeal to early-stage visitors. Use content marketing as the new advertising. It’s non-interruptive and works!

Final Thoughts:

How is pouring a beer for someone related to content marketing? Hmmmm good question.

Creating good content to share and connect with your audience is a lot like sitting down with a fan and connecting with them over a beer.

Create great content, meet the needs of your audience, stop talking about yourself, build raging fans and then pour them a beer!

Have you developed a strategy for content marketing? What are some things that have worked for you? Feel free to comment below or find me on Twitter @lindskeller.

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