According to Hannah Smith, there are four types of content every site needs: educational, persuasive, converting and entertaining. Most B2B companies don’t need to be convinced of the need for those first three. In fact, B2B companies sometimes do a better job at producing educational content than their B2C counterparts. But what’s missing from most B2B marketing repertoires is entertaining content.
Some might say that entertaining content has no place in the B2B world. While it’s true that B2B products are inherently more functional and less entertaining, the thing to keep in mind is that purchasers are still human. There are two major reasons B2B companies should produce entertaining content: emotional appeal and shareability.
If purchasers were bots, designed to consume information and make a rational decision about which product best fits their criteria, our marketing jobs would be pretty easy. Since we’re dealing with humans, not bots, we have to reach beyond the rational threshold to the emotions. A number of studies have shown that emotions influence what we buy. Entertaining content can be a simple way to include an emotional appeal in your otherwise-rational B2B marketing.
Your content may be well-planned, well-written and creatively designed, but if no one sees it, that hard work is futile. Like it or not, entertaining content has a shareability factor that is undeniable. People are far more likely to share something they find entertaining than to share something dry and bland. Creating shareable content is something every B2B company should aspire to. The more people are sharing your content, the further your brand will reach.
As with any solid content strategy, creating entertaining content requires a plan and has a few ground rules.
Although it might have a wider net, entertaining content still should ultimately reach your customers. Know what they like and dislike. Know their demographics, their interests and their hobbies. The more you know, the better you can be at creating a plan.
Take a look at your mission statement and your brand values. Every single piece of content should be a reflection of those values. Don’t toss those aside just for a laugh.
If you create an entertaining infographic, there should be no question who designed it. If you produce an entertaining video, your logo should be included. Make sure the content is tied back to your brand in a memorable (yet creative) way.