Breaking Through the B2B Armor

Reaching a B2B, or business-to-business, audience takes a bit of extra attention. In this space, you are often competing with a lot of other companies for the time and attention of your audience. At the same time, your audience consists of people who are working, so they do not have a lot of time for distractions. Here’s what you need to know to break through and get the attention of B2B audiences. [Read more…]

Hitting the Right Notes for Your B2C Audience

Now that you know the difference between the B2C and the B2B audiences, let’s take a look at how to best reach each type. Keep in mind that one person can be a part of both audiences so you are not exactly targeting different people. Instead, you are trying to tailor your content so that it meets that person’s needs in the role they are currently playing. First up is the B2C audience, or direct consumers while they are not at work. [Read more…]

B2C vs. B2B: Why Does it Matter?

The first rule of content marketing is to make sure your content speaks directly to your audience so it connects better with your readers. To understand the best path to making that connection, you have to first find out where your customers are when they are looking for products and services.

Two Types of Audiences

The first type of audience is commonly referred to B2C or Business to Consumer. This audience consists of regular people that are shopping for products and services while they are not at work. Think about someone who is looking for clothing, groceries, electronics and gadgets, home improvements, children’s items, entertainment options, and other similar items.

The second type of audience is commonly referred to as B2B or Business to Business. This audience is made up of people that are looking for products and services as part of their job. Think about an office manager shopping for office supplies, IT personnel comparing software solutions, or a CEO considering a location for the annual retreat.

Who Cares?

[Read more…]

B2B vs B2C: Addressing the Differences


There are two main divisions in marketing: the business-to-business (B2B) and the business-to-consumer (B2C). When you are creating B2B content, you are addressing other professionals while they are at work. In contrast, although the members of your B2C audience probably all have jobs, you are addressing them as if they are out shopping. There are a few differences to remember when creating content for these audiences. [Read more…]

Forbes: Content Marketing Trends of 2014

My favorite part of January blogging is going back and looking at all of the predictions for the previous year to see how they did. The one I’m looking at today was one I held on to from last January because I thought it had some great predictions in it. It was written by Jayson DeMers, a content marketing and SEO contributor for Forbes. Let’s take a look at his “Top 7 Content Marketing Trends Dominating 2014.” [Read more…]

Things You Might Be Saying Wrong


photo credit: “Snoop Doggy Dogg” by alejandro jofre | CC BY 2.0

Ok, ok, I know the old Grammar Nazi routine gets old, but some of these are funny and one caught me off guard. You can find long lists of commonly mistaken sayings all over the web, these are the ones I like (or hate) the most.

1. It’s a Doggy-Dog World.

Let me start with my favorite. I found it here on this blog. Why is it my favorite? Because the writer states that there is no such thing as a “doggy-dog” world. Come on, really?

[Side note: I asked my husband, who grew up in rural Iowa, if he could identify what a “doggy-dog” world was. His answer: “No. I got nothing. At that point in my life, I was down with OPP.”]

But seriously, the actual phrase is “dog-eat-dog” world, and I don’t think anyone is unintentionally mixing the two up. However, if you are, consider yourself informed.

2. Suppose v. Supposed

Suppose means to assume something, or consider something, or to believe something is true, generally for the sake of an argument or as a guess. “Suppose what you say is true: there is no such thing as a ‘doggy-dog world.’” Another example: “I suppose we should leave now, although I’d rather stay for another drink.”

If you’re talking about something that you should do, or that you ought to do, the word you’re looking for is “supposed.” For example, “I’m supposed to leave for work at 7:00, but I’m running late.”

3. I Could Care Less

Well, if you could care less then you should. If you couldn’t care less then you are all out of caring at the moment. You are caring the absolute least.

Consider this sophisticated graph of caring:

| 0—–6————-20—— |

If your amount of caring is at level zero, you couldn’t care less because caring is all gone. If your amount of caring is at 6, well then you could care less, but not much. If your amount of caring is at 20, clearly you care.

4. For All Intensive Purposes

No, really, how intensive is your purpose?

The phrase you’re looking for is “for all intents and purposes,” meaning “in every practical way.” Not in every single possible way, just the practical ones. “For all intents and purposes, this thing is useless.”

5. A Bald-Faced Lie

That is the correct way to say it. A common misinterpretation is “bold-faced lie,” and the less-common but much more comical “ball-faced lie.”

The idea behind the “bald-faced lie” is that it’s not hiding behind anything or otherwise trying to represent itself as true. It’s a blatant lie.

6. Irregardless…

…is not a word. That is all.

7. You Have Another Thing Coming

We return to the blog post of my first example. Scroll on down to number 14. The author suggests that the correct phrase is “you have another think coming.” I have never heard the phrase used with the word “think” before, so I did some searching around the web.

It turns out, there is a whole world out there that says “you have another think coming,” perhaps around 50% of the English-speaking population. If you like spending hours reading about words and usage (ahem), check out this interesting conversation. For the Cliff’s Notes version, read here.

Well, what are you? A think-er or a thing-er?

I’m sticking with “thing.” It’s the only way I’ve ever known it, and Judas Priest is on my side. Although I think I’ll go out of my way to never use it in writing now that I know that half of the English-speaking population thinks I’m wrong.

Enough with the Cussing

photo credit: “F-Bomb” by Carly Franklin | CC BY 2.0

photo credit: “F-Bomb” by Carly Franklin | CC BY 2.0

I’ve noticed a trend on blogs and other online publications lately. It seems that it’s become acceptable, maybe even commonplace, to use profanity. Anyone who knows me offline knows that I’m certainly no stranger to colorful language, nor am I particularly offended by it. In fact, I can usually appreciate a well-placed swear word and often find myself censoring myself after-the-fact in front of the kids.  (What the truck. I said, “What the truck.”) [Read more…]

Pro Tip: Use the language of your industry.

Use the language of your industry.

If you try to impress your readers with your vast vocabulary or poetic prose, you’ll lose them. Content marketing is not literature so keep it simple. On the other hand, don’t talk down to your readers. Use appropriate lingo, abbreviations, and acronyms. It will help you sound natural and familiar.

This is what makes buyer personas such an important part of the content marketing process. If you’re writing an investment banking blog and your target is investment bankers, spelling out every process and defining every term will bore your target readers and you’ll lose them. However, if your target is new customers and you fill up your posts with acronyms and jargon, nobody will know what you’re talking about.

Understand your reader.

Read More
| Fundamentals of Blogging: Who are you talking to? |
| 5 Reasons to Hire a Freelance Writer |

Pro Tip: Always write for the reader

Always write for the reader.

Don’t ever get so caught up in what you’re selling,  your sales goals, or search engine optimization that you forget about your reader. Every component is important, but without the reader they are all useless.

Begin and end each effort with your customers in mind. Give them what they want if you want them to return the favor.

Read More:

| Rule #1: Great Content Comes First |
| 5 Ways to Improve Your Web Copy |