4 Ways to Identify B2B Influencers in 2022
b2b influencers

B2B influencer marketing is a game-changer for enterprise brands. By partnering with influential believed leaders in your industry, you are able to reach new audiences, construct trust and credibility with current customers and prospective customers, and drive sales. Preparing and executing a B2B influencer marketing strategy is difficult. There are several moving pieces that require attention and focus.

The post 4 Ways to Determine B2B Influencers in 2022 appeared initial on Marketing and advertising Insider Group .

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To Gate or Not to Gate? Changing Trends in B2B Marketing

Open garden gate image.

Open garden gate image.

Q: How many lead gen marketers does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: Please fill out the form below and we will email you the punchline.

The great gate debate continues to rage throughout the B2B marketing world. What once was a landscape full of sparse landing pages with lead gen forms has become an ocean of content. But still, there’s little consensus about how to get the most value out of what we marketers create.

Does ungating content devalue it? Does gating content make it inaccessible to the audience you’re most trying to reach? We all agree that getting people’s contact information is a value exchange. The debate is whether we offer the value first, or we demand that the reader do so.

Of course, there is no one answer to these questions. No two B2B audiences are the same, so a one-size-fits-all approach won’t work. But it’s true that audience expectations as a whole are changing, and we need to change with them.

Here are some of our gating best practices.

1 — Match Your Tactics to Your Goals

The biggest question about gating is the simplest one: Is this content intended to raise awareness, boost thought leadership, or grow your audience? Then gating is a bad choice. Top-of-funnel content should, generally speaking, be as widely accessible as possible.

However, if your goals are mid-to-bottom funnel, then gating might make sense (more on that later). This means content for folks who are actively seeking a solution or evaluating vendors. These folks are in the market for useful content that helps make that purchase decision, and gating that content makes sense.

When you dig a little deeper, though, it’s not just about gated vs. ungated. It’s about how much content you gate, which content in the campaign should go behind that lead gen form, and how you bring the right audience to the content. With that in mind…

[bctt tweet=”“It’s not just about gated vs. ungated. It’s about how much content you gate, which content in the campaign should go behind that lead gen form, and how you bring the right audience to the content.” — Joshua Nite @NiteWrites” username=”toprank”]

2 — Think Bigger Appetizers and Smaller Entrees

Let’s say your organization just sponsored some hefty original research. You know there’s a ton of intrinsic value in that research for your audience. The old-school practice would be to put all of it behind a gate, with just a few stats to whet people’s appetites.

There’s so much free content available now, though, that you have to offer more value before you ask for that contact information. For example, our client Prophix made a long-scroll, content-heavy power page to support their original research: The 2020 CFO Benchmark Report. With influencer content, plenty of stats and some truly gorgeous charts and graphs, the page is a destination unto itself. But for those ready for a next step, the page also directs folks to download the whole report as a PDF, or to contact Prophix for a demo.

Then there’s Content Marketing Institute, which puts out an exhaustive report on B2B marketing benchmarks every year. This past year, they published in conjunction with MarketingProfs and offered the entire report completely ungated, in easily embeddable and shareable format. These folks know that a thought leadership piece like this is worth more the more people see it. CMI’s annual report has made their name synonymous with content marketing, and that’s worth more than the leads they might capture from a gated report.

3 — Don’t Lock Up Your Influencers

In case you haven’t noticed, influencer marketing is one of our agency specialties. We love to work together with B2B influencers to create awesome content. We want to make it as easy as possible for influencers to share the great stuff we make together — which means ditching the gate if at all possible.

B2B thought leaders are going to be more enthusiastic about linking their audience straight to content, rather than to a landing page with a form to fill. 

I can’t think of a more compelling example than our client Demandbase’s recent Smarter GTM™ comic. This is a substantial, visually stunning, influencer-packed piece. And there’s not a gate in sight. Demandbase’s goal for this piece was to raise awareness of their new offering and establish thought leadership. So it made perfect sense to keep it ungated, even though it’s a ton of great content.

[bctt tweet=”“B2B thought leaders are going to be more enthusiastic about linking their audience straight to content, rather than to a landing page with a form to fill.” — Joshua Nite @NiteWrites” username=”toprank”]

4 — Add More Value Behind the Gate

If we’re giving away the good stuff up front, what should we be gating? Look for ways to add additional utility to the content. Prophix did a great job at this with their Digital Transformation in Finance page. They created three mini-assets that spoke to specific audience segments, then embedded CTAs to each one in its relevant section. This way, Prophix is maximizing views to the report page, while also offering a lead-capturing next step for those who want it.

You don’t have to go the lengths that Prophix did to add value, of course. It can be as simple as offering a PDF download of a web-based asset, for portability and printability. Or you could offer a calculator, checklist, or other useful tool. 

5 — Less Gatekeeping, More Great Content

None of this is to say that you should never gate content, of course. If you have a bombshell industry report with insights that will knock people’s socks off, you may be able to make the value proposition. But most marketers will see better results in top-of-funnel content if it’s freely available. 

My advice: Give away the good stuff and treat gated content like a dessert, not a main course. Audience expectations have changed, and in the all-out war for people’s attention, a gate can be a fatal flaw for your content.

Check out Lane Ellis’ post for more advice on B2B marketing in 2022.

The post To Gate or Not to Gate? Changing Trends in B2B Marketing appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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B2B Vs . B2C Content Marketing and advertising: The Differences to Consider

You may be familiar with the two types of businesses, B2B and B2C content marketing strategies may not be familiar.

The post B2B Vs. B2C Content Marketing: The Differences to Consider appeared first on Scoop. it Weblog .

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Most readily useful of B2B Marketing: Learn & Refine With Insight From Our Top 10 Content Marketing Posts

Portrait of a smiling B2B content marketer with arms crossed.

Portrait of a smiling B2B content marketer with arms crossed.

What were our top B2B content marketing articles of the entire year?

Content encompasses nearly everything we read, watch, or listen to, so that as our CEO Lee Odden said years ago, it’s also represents a significant part of the reason the necessity for search technology began in the first place.

We’re proud of the continued content marketing successes our team of marketers at TopRank Marketing have achieved during still another challenging year, for a wide-range of major B2B clients. As 2022 draws ever closer, we desired to take time to share our top content marketing articles of the year — each filled up with insights, best practices, research, examples, and a look towards the future.

We’re also fortunate to have a wealth of talented B2B marketing professionals contributing to the TopRank B2B Marketing blog — which celebrates its 19th year this month.

This collection of our top 10 content marketing posts of the year can serve as a valuable resource, full of practical examples and relevant topics for digital B2B marketing professionals from CMOs to copywriters.

We hope that you’ll find these articles useful well into 2022 and far beyond.

Now, sit back and join us even as we move on to the top 10.

Our Hottest Content Marketing Posts of 2021:

1 . 6 Eye-Opening B2B Content Marketing Statistics for 2021 — Nick Nelson

Content Writer Drafting Copy on Laptop

In our top content marketing post of the entire year, our senior content marketing manager Nick Nelson looks closely at the state of B2B content marketing and where it’s going, with data-backed statistics from a various of sources that help paint an insightful picture of what is coming.

Insights include:

  • Businesses are probably the most trusted institution for information
  • 88% of marketers say collecting first-party data is a priority
  • Mobile device usage has risen dramatically
  • Brands are using Instagram Stories more than ever
  • Most B2B marketers say the pandemic had a meaningful impact on their strategies
  • Top barriers to creating great B2B content include workload and changing priorities

You can check out all of Nick’s posts here , and follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn .

[bctt tweet=”“People are looking to businesses for credible, clear, and accurate insights and guidance. As marketers, we must harness this opportunity to earn and solidify this trust.” — Nick Nelson @NickNelsonMN” username=”toprank”]

2 . 5 Ways to Humanize Your B2B Content Marketing – And exactly why It Matters — Joshua Nite

Smiling business man sitting with four robots image.

B2B buyers are people. Is your content written about, by, and for humans?

In our second most widely used content marketing post of the year, our own senior content marketing manager Joshua Nite shares five powerful methods to better humanize your B2B content, from using key vocabulary elements to co-creation with influencers, and much more.

You can check out all of Josh’s posts here , and follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn .

[bctt tweet=”“If human beings are buying and using your product or service, they are experiencing emotions and generating stories.” — Joshua Nite @NiteWrites” username=”toprank”]

3. 5 B2C Content Marketing Methods that B2B Marketers Should Steal (And 5 They Shouldn’t Touch) — Joshua Nite

Pickpocket taking money from oblivious man on phone image.

Can B2C-style content marketing work for B2B?

In our third most popular content marketing article of the season, Joshua Nite says yes, but only up to a point.

Josh has a look at what B2B marketers can borrow from B2C, and what they shouldn’t — from having a greater stand and embracing diversity to getting personal, this fascinating article extends to the core of top B2B content marketing tactics.

[bctt tweet=”“The central thesis for using B2C techniques in B2B is the realization that there’s no such thing as a ‘B2B buyer.’ They’re not a distinct species. People are people, whether they’re at work or at home .” — Joshua Nite @nitewrites” username=”toprank”]

4. 10 Ways to Drive Revenue through Content Marketing by Joe Pulizzi — Joe Pulizzi / Lee Odden

Drive Revenue Content Marketing

Just how can content marketing drive revenue for your business?

In our fourth most-read B2B content marketing article of the year, the one-and-only Joe Pulizzi of The Tilt shares 10 direct and indirect methods to drive revenue with content marketing, in a powerful and insightful guest post celebrating his updated and expanded Content Inc. book.

Learn content marketing revenue-driving tactics you may be overlooking, including:

  • Advertising/Sponsorship
  • Conferences and Events
  • Premium Content
  • Donations
  • Affiliate Sales
  • Subscriptions
  • Product Sales
  • Services Sales
  • Loyalty Revenue
  • Increased Yield on Current Clients

[bctt tweet=”“The most successful content creators leverage not one, but multiple streams of revenue. Whether you consider yourself a marketer or part of a media company, we are all publishers.” — Joe Pulizzi @JoePulizzi” username=”toprank”]

5. 5 Things B2B Content Marketers Need to Know About Working with Influencers — Lee Odden

B2B influencer content marketing

What do B2B content marketers need to know about working with influencers?

In our fifth most popular content marketing post of the year, Lee shares five key points to inform and drive a successful B2B influencer content marketing program, from where to start and examples of success to what not to do, including details on:

  • Defining B2B Content Influencer Marketing
  • How to Engage B2B Influencers for Content
  • How to start with Influencer Content Marketing
  • B2B Influencer Content Marketing in Action
  • What Not to Do When Collaborating with B2B Influencers on Content

Check out each of Lee’s 2, 600+ posts here , and follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn .

[bctt tweet=”“Collaborating with influencers on content for B2B marketing efforts is an effective way for B2B brands to optimize their marketing.” — Lee Odden @LeeOdden” username=”toprank”]

6. B2B Content Marketing: 10 Tips to Level Up Your Writing Skills — Joshua Nite

Typewriter on Faded Blue Wood Background Image

How can B2B content marketers elevate writing skills and create a more human connection with readers?

From rhythm and revision to spicing up conclusions, in our sixth most popular content marketing article of the entire year, Josh shares 10 tips to level-up your writing skills, including:

  • Be Aware of Rhythm
  • Practice Introductions
  • Don’t Tell the Audience What They Already know just
  • Let Go of Obsolete Rules
  • Read It Out Loud
  • Write, Wait, Review, Revise
  • Spice Up Your Conclusions

This inspiring piece includes tips to elevate your B2B content marketing writing, and to make that blank screen less daunting.

[bctt tweet=”“Writing and revising require two different mindsets. If you’re trying to do both at the same time, you’re likely not doing either as well as you might.” — Joshua Nite @NiteWrites” username=”toprank”]

7. Social First for B2B Content Marketing: What, Why and How — Joshua Nite

Hairless Cat at Laptop Image

What is social first, and how does it make B2B content marketing distinctively better?

In the seventh most read content marketing piece of the year, Josh shares the what, why, and how, combined to create substantial social posts crafted to provoke comments, likes, reactions and shares, including:

  • Hit the Sweet Spot for Word Count
  • Begin a Conversation
  • Involve Influencers
  • Reuse, Recycle, Repurpose

[bctt tweet=”“In the never-ending struggle to earn attention, B2B marketers have to use every strategy we have. And we have to make sure our goals for each channel line up with that channels’ strengths and weaknesses.” — Joshua Nite @NiteWrites” username=”toprank”]

8. 10 Actionable B2B Content Marketing Insights From New Research — Lane R. Ellis

Professional black women leading group of fellow B2B marketers around table image.

Where is B2B content marketing headed in 2022 and beyond?

In our eighth most-read content content marketing post of the year, I share 10 actionable insights that marketers can use today, from eye-opening B2B content marketing research, including a review of:

  • More B2B Content Marketing & Greater Success From Defined Strategies
  • More Successful B2B Organizations Outsource, Use Content Marketing Tools
  • Measurement, Creativity & Consistency Present In Top B2B Content Marketing
  • Bolstering Customer Loyalty & Nurturing Audiences Are Key
  • Empathy Allows B2B Marketers To Capture Greater Attention
  • Video Investment In 2022 & Another B2B Content Marketing Landscape
  • Large & SMB Organizations Benefit From B2B Content Marketing
  • Putting Audience Needs & Journey Stages First
  • Virtual Events, Research & Blog Posts Are Primary Elements
  • Content Marketing Hits Multiple B2B Targets

You can check out all of my posts here , and follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn .

[bctt tweet=”“B2B content marketing is growing in importance, scope, and adoption by organizations of all sizes, and is poised to see further expansion in 2022 and beyond.” — Lane R. Ellis @lanerellis” username=”toprank”]

9. 6 B2B Content Marketing Summertime Sizzlers To Increase Audience Engagement — Joshua Nite

Dog surfing in the summer of B2B marketing image.

How can B2B marketers make their content more engaging?

Within our ninth most popular content marketing post of the year, Josh offers up six summertime B2B content marketing sizzlers, from going live and taking people behind the scenes to exploring social-first and interactive content, collaborating with influencers, and measuring engagement metrics.

[bctt tweet=”“It’s all about customer engagement. That means connecting with people on a personal level, offering something novel and fascinating, and using that contact to build a meaningful relationship.” — Joshua Nite @NiteWrites” username=”toprank”]

10. Equilibrium: 10 Tips to Balance Creativity and Process in B2B Content Marketing — Joshua Nite

Two marketers aside illustration of brain showing creative and intellectual sides image.

How can you balance the analytical and creative for greater B2B content marketing success?

Rounding our our list of the very best content marketing article of the years is yet another insightful piece by Josh. From involving diverse voices and embracing keyword research to learning your audience and more, Josh shares 10 tips to balance creativity and process in B2B content marketing, including:

  • Embrace Keyword Research
  • Learn Your Audience
  • Involve Diverse Voices
  • Release the Ego
  • Read Other People’s Content
  • Don’t Confuse the Garnish for the Meal
  • Have a Clear Next Step
  • Get Invested in Results
  • Collaborate with Analytics Folks
  • Continue Your Education

[bctt tweet=”“Marketing content should compel your reader to take specific action. No matter how creative and fun your piece is, at the end there should be a logical, meaningful, and measurable next step.” — Joshua Nite @nitewrites” username=”toprank”]

Thanks TopRank Marketing Readers & Writers

Thanks to you our readers, and to all of our top content marketing authors for contributing these top 10 content marketing posts of 2021 — congratulations on making the list!

We published dozens of posts this year specifically about content marketing, and plan to enable you to get even more in 2022, so stay tuned for a new year of the latest helpful search industry research and insight.

Please tell us which content marketing topics and ideas you’d like to see us focus on for 2022 — we’d love to hear your suggestions. Feel absolve to leave those thoughts in the comments section below.

Many thanks to each of you who read our blog regularly, and to all of you who comment on and share our posts on the TopRank Marketing social media channels at Twitter , LinkedIn , Facebook , Instagram , and YouTube .

To learn more about the rising power of influence in B2B, watch our CEO Lee Odden in the comprehensive new webinar ” How to Accelerate B2B Marketing Results by Working With Influencers , ” and learn to create greater content marketing impact with influence.

The post Best of B2B Marketing: Learn & Refine With Insight From Our Top 10 Content Marketing Posts appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog – TopRank® .

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Best 25 B2B Content Marketing Influencers and Experts To Follow #CMWorld 2021

2021 Content Marketing World 25 Content Marketing Influencers Collage Image

2021 Content Marketing World 25 Content Marketing Influencers Collage Image

The in-personal and virtual Content material Marketing World 2021 is finally upon us. As the largest content marketing conference in the world, CMWorld brings together a leading array of talented professionals who are filled to the brim with curiosity to get future trends, marketing understanding, and aspirations for new levels of success in the post-pandemic planet.

For the past thirteen years leading marketers from all over the world have joined to gather in Cleveland, Ohio for just one of the world’s most authoritative content marketing events, and this year’s Content Marketing Globe returns for in-person network and learning, after occurring entirely in the virtual realm in 2020.

Readers of our blog know we have a long history with all the conference starting at the beginning, with 11 years of speaking and attending along with eight yrs during which we partnered with all the Content Marketing Institute to develop speaker and influencer articles marketing campaigns.

A TopRank Marketing tradition that has been imitated in recent years yet never truly duplicated is usually our annual list of articles marketing experts ranked based on their social influence, a helpful compilation derived from the hundreds of excellent #CMWorld 2021 speakers.

List Methodology: For this list we make use of the Traackr influencer marketing platform to filter the content marketing material experts who are speaking in the current year’s Content Marketing and advertising World conference — utilizing a large number of criteria including the relevance of the individuals to the topic, the degree to which their systems engage, the size of their systems, and other factors. Online data is pulled in from weblogs, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, LinkedIn and other social systems.

The focus subject in question is most definitely “content marketing, ” plus everyone included on this list is:

  • A speaker at #CMWorld 2021
  • Rated in the top-25 for “content marketing” according to our meaning, resonance, reach and market metrics

CMWorld 2019 Influencer network

Many thanks go to all the people who are actively sharing knowledge about content marketing in 2021 by appealing and helping others with helpful opinions, insights and expertise on the social web. This list is only a newbie point to help expand your personal content marketing universe.

In this year’s listing there are a few familiar faces along with a welcome number of new enhancements. We plan to learn brand new lessons from each of these twenty five content marketing influencers, and hope you’ll do the exact same throughout the rest of the year plus into 2022 and past.

25 Content Marketing Influencers Speaking on CMWorld 2021


Ann Handley @MarketingProfs

Chief Content Officer, MarketingProfs

Introducing: The Art of Storytelling: Telling True Stories Nicely

Jay Baer

Jay Baer @jaybaer

Creator, Convince & Convert

Presenting: How to Lower the Three Drawbridges of Content Success

John Jantsch

John Jantsch @ducttape

Founder, Duct Mp3 Marketing

Offering: Rethinking the client Journey


Michael Brenner @BrennerMichael

Content material Marketing Agency CEO & CMO Influencer, Marketing Insider Group

Showing: 10 Steps To Improve Your Content Marketing Program for RETURN ON INVESTMENT

Presenting: How to Define and Build Your Content Marketing Strategy


Andy Crestodina @crestodina

Co-Founder & CMO, Orbit Media Studios

Presenting: From Keyphrases to Content material: The SEO Workshop pertaining to Hands-on Marketers

Bernie Borges

Bernie Borges @bernieborges

Vice President Worldwide Content Marketing, iQor

Presenting: How you can Produce Epic Content by Conducting Epic Interviews

Carla Johnson

Carla Johnson @CarlaJohnson

Marketing & Innovation Strategist, Keynote Speaker & Best Selling Author

Presenting: Courageous Creativity: How Content material Marketers Get to “YES! ” with Bold Ideas

Andrew Davis

Andrew Davis @DrewDavisHere

Keynote Loudspeaker & Best-Selling Author, Monumental Shift

Showcasing: Embrace The Constraints: Why Adding Constraints Sets off Creativity, Inspires Action & Creates Better Content

Ardath Albee

Ardath Albee @ardath421

B2B Marketing Strategist & CEO, Marketing Interactions

Presenting: Building B2B Buyer-Driven Digital Experiences

Amy Balliett

Amy Balliett @AmyBalliett

Founder & TOP DOG, Killer Visual Strategies

Presenting: Building B2B Buyer-Driven Electronic Experiences


Melanie Deziel @mdeziel

Chief Content Officer, StoryFuel

Presenting: Prove It: Making use of Content as Evidence of Your Most Important Claims

Doug Kessler

Doug Kessler @dougkessler

Creative Director & Co-Founder, Velocity Partners

Presenting: Ask A Dev: Precisely why Your Content Team Needs Designers!

Pam Didner

Pam Didner @PamDidner

Writer, Founder & VP associated with Marketing, Effective Sales Enablement

Presenting: Create A Scalable Worldwide Content Marketing Strategy in seven Steps

Showcasing: Let’s Obtain Glocal… Balance Global and Local for Content Advertising

Kathy Klotz-Guest

Kathy Klotz-Guest @kathyklotzguest

Creator, Keeping It Human

Presenting: Yes And… And the Tradition of Now: Why the continuing future of Marketing is Improv

Erika Heald

Erika Heald @SFerika

Marketing Consultant, Erika Heald Consulting

Presenting: How to Conduct a Social networking Audit That Helps Your Community Thrive

Meryl Evans

Meryl Evans @merylkevans

Digital Marketing Professional, meryl. net, Equal Entry, ProResource and Diamond

Presenting: Accessibility Is Everyone’s Job — Marketing Included

Michele Linn

Michele Linn @michelelinn

Co-founder and head of strategy, Mantis Study

Presenting: From Flat in order to Fascinating: 8 Essential Components to Help Your Original Research Stand Out

A Lee Judge

A. Lee Judge @ALeeJudge

Co-Founder & CMO, Content Monsta

Presenting: The Content Remix: Turning Familiar Into Original

Presenting: The Future of Function: The Importance of Mentorship Programs


Shafqat Islam @shafqatislam

CEO, Pleasant

Presenting: Embracing the Silver precious metal Linings: Applying What We now have Learned to Build Better Connections (& Become Better Marketers)

Zontee Hou

Zontee Hou @ZonteeHou

President & Chief Strategist, Media Volery

Delivering: Content Optimization & Distribution Workshop

Presenting: Data & Storytelling: Using Social Insights in order to Shape Your Content

Michael Barber

Michael Barber @michaeljbarber

Brand Consultant and Marketing Strategist,

Presenting: E-mail marketing for 2021 and Further than

Presenting: Open Rate Is usually Dead: What Marketers Need to find out About iOS15

Jessica Best

Jessica Best @bestofjess

Vice President, Data-Driven Marketing, Barkley

Presenting: E-mail marketing Workshop: What Works and What Turn up useful info

Joe Lazauskas

Joe Lazauskas @JoeLazauskas

Head of Marketing, Contently

Presenting: What Buyers Want through Content Marketing — And Where Marketers Are Dropping Short

Joe Pulizzi

May well Pulizzi @JoePulizzi

Founder, The Tilt

Presenting: 10 Content Strategies in 20 Minutes: What Business Content Creators Can Study from Content Entrepreneurs

Tequia Burt

Tequia Burt @TequiaBurt

Global Blog Editor, LinkedIn Marketing Solutions

Presenting: How LinkedIn is Using its Blogs as a Vehicle with regard to Building Diversity Against the Backdrop of Growth

Even the most comprehensive statistical analysis, no matter how heavy and well-researched, can only get you so far in finding the individuals who you’ll consider the the majority of helpful and influential in your own daily professional marketing life, which is why we’d love it in case you’d please share the name of other content marketers that influence you the most in the comments section below.

To further your own content material marketing expertise, here’s a bonus list of some of our best latest posts about content advertising:

If you’d like to learn more about just how being the best answer can assist B2B marketers dominate in search, you’re in luck, because our CEO and co-founder Lee Odden will be introducing at Content Marketing World on the topic. Here are the important points:


Thursday, September 30 – 2: 45pm – 3: 15pm Far eastern

Workshop with Shelter Odden

How B2B Content Marketing experts Can Dominate in Search: Function as the Best Answer

We hope to see you either in-person or virtually at the Content Marketing World 2021 conference, and be sure to adhere to us on Twitter from @toprank for real-time updates during the conference using the #CMWorld hashtag.

The particular post Best 25 B2B Content Advertising Influencers and Experts To follow along with #CMWorld 2021 appeared first on B2B Marketing Weblog – TopRank® .

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