Train Prospects with Your B2B Marketing Content

Finger Pointing to BlackboardI can hear the excitement now. There's a way to train prospects? Eager B2B marketers have but one question -- can we train them to buy my product? All the time?

Now before you go off with visions of prospects marching like zombies and chanting "buy, buy, buy," I should clarify a couple of things.

First, you can train prospects. Unfortunately for us, we often train prospects in ways we don't realize or anticipate. And second, now that you know, you can use training principles to create great B2B marketing copy.

Principle 1: Stay Focused

Did you ever have a teacher who presented more than one concept at a time? Or who ran through so many ideas you didn't know which one was most important? Or remembered half of what she said? Don't make that mistake with your marketing copy.

The average person can only keep five to seven things in their mind at once. So let's say you want people to remember your company name, your product name, the key benefit your product provides, and the call to action. That's four items.

Be cautious about adding more. If you do, be aware that the more things you add the less likely people are to remember them.

Keep your copy focused!

Target one persona and one to two key benefits. By the time you add evidence that the benefits work, you'll have done your job. The prospect will be trained on your product and what it can do for them.

Principle 2: What's In It For Me? (WIIFM)

Adult learning theory addresses a big threshold you have to cross with adult learners. That's the "what's in it for me" threshold.

Have you ever been telling someone a piece of information and have them look at you and say, "Why do I need to know this?" That's WIIFM in action.

B2B marketing copy cannot fail the WIIFM test. Ever.

If you want to train prospects on your offerings, you have tell them what's in it for them and you have to do it quickly. That's why customer-focused, benefit-oriented copy will outperform company-focused, feature-oriented copy every time.

It trains prospects better.

Principle 3: Appeal to a Variety of Learning Styles

Learning theory tells us people have a range of learning styles. Some learn best visually. Some best through listening. Some prefer a mix. Of course, the gold standard is to provide opportunities to practice.

Consider learning styles when you create B2B marketing content. Can that white paper be re-purposed into a podcast to appeal to audio learners? Can that case study be turned into a video to appeal to visual learners? Content is expensive. Be sure what you have reaches a variety of learning styles!

And don't forget about those practice opportunities. Is there a demonstration? Free trial? Money back guarantee? People want to know they'll be able to practice and learn to be successful with your product or service. Make sure they can have those opportunities.

So there you have it. Three training principles that can not only build better marketing content, but well-trained prospects.

What other parallels can you think of?

Image courtesy of Farlig Bank

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