How can brands create B2B content their audiences actually want to read?

Pete Marcus

04 Sep 2019

A majority of business decision-makers are unimpressed by the thought leadership content that brands create about digital transformation. That’s despite digital transformation being their number one tech priority right now.

This is one of the conclusions from Harvard’s latest Pulse research. Our survey of 100 business decision-makers found that only a minority of them think brands’ content is interesting, based on a range of different characteristics.

Only 34% of business leaders think brands’ content is helpful, and just 22% believe it’s inspiring.

The best score of the lot was a mere 40% – that’s the percentage of decision-makers who say brands’ content on digital transformation is informative. Given that it’s about a subject tech brands know well, that’s still pretty underwhelming.

So what should brands do? We always take three principles into consideration when it comes to developing award-winning content and campaigns that cut through.

  1. Make it human

B2B buyers are humans too. In fact, it’s very likely they make decisions based on emotional factors just like they do outside their day jobs. 69% of business leaders told us they make business purchasing decisions based on how they feel about a brand, rather than coming to hard-headed conclusions based purely on data. Similarly, they’ll find human stories and down-to-earth language much more engaging than stats and jargon.

  1. Make it useful

Only 21% of business decision-makers agree that brands’ content on digital transformation is practical or implementable. So much “thought leadership” material is too conceptual or theoretical to have any relevance to people’s day jobs. Keep if focused on what really matters to your audience right now.

  1. Make it short

People are busy and pressured. Make your content short, snappy, easy to remember and easy to digest.

Compelling content is vital for connecting with B2B audiences – just like in the consumer world. So next time you’re writing about digital transformation, focus on the reader at the other end.

Read our full Harvard Pulse report here // What do you think makes great B2B content? Share your thoughts below or at 

Photo Credit: Bench Accounting, available here