It’s no secret that many B2B SaaS brands invest heavily in SEO.
That’s because more people use search to discover and buy new products and services. These numbers tell the story:
- 68% of online experiences begin with a search engine.
- 53.3% of all website traffic comes from organic search.
- 92.96% of global traffic comes from Google Search, Images, and Maps.
SEO drives organic traffic and leads for many brands, no doubt. However, it is only one of many distribution channels you can use to capture, nurture, and convert leads to customers. That’s why you shouldn’t optimize all content you create for web searches.
Below, we show you four non-SEO content opportunities you can use to get more ROI from your marketing efforts. You will learn about the value of each content type, where it plays a role in your customer journey, and some best practices for creating each one.
Ready to diversify your content marketing strategy?
Let’s dive in!
4 Non-SEO Content Types to Drive Leads and Sales for Your SaaS Company
1. Case Studies
Many people find it helpful to see how your product has solved problems similar to their own. For example, if someone is looking for a way to improve their company culture, they are more likely to consider a product if they see how it has helped others in similar situations.
That’s the power of case studies (or customer success stories).
These real-life examples help those who have already learned about your product and want to know more about how it has worked for others. Case studies help prospects make a more educated decision, so they are more likely to try your product.
Unfortunately, most B2B case studies are painfully boring. Some list a bunch of data but don’t share key details about the customer’s transformation journey. You want to create stories that help prospects see themselves in others’ stories, so they are inspired to take action.
So, how do you create and use customer success stories to gain trust and new users?
Identify what a case study should include. Here’s a checklist to help you get started:
These elements will help you create informative, engaging, and persuasive case studies showcasing your product’s value.
Let’s use this Hero Cosmetics case study from ShipBob as an example:
ShipBob leads by telling the reader what to expect right off the bat: how Hero Cosmetics scaled their business and expanded their product line.
I don’t know about you, but I definitely want to keep reading to learn how they were able to do this in just two years because that’s a HUGE win for any business.
ShipBob also leads with key metrics or results.
These metrics show the tangible results Hero Cosmetics got from becoming one of ShipBob’s customers. You spice up your case studies by including quantitative and qualitative metrics to show how your product helped a business achieve its goals.
ShipBob also uses storytelling to make an even stronger case.
Background stories provide context to the case study and make the case study more relatable. ShipBob shows the before and after of Hero Cosmetics to help readers visualize what the brand used to look like and what it has become.
They also include testimonials to support the stories, as they provide a first-hand account of the benefits and results that a customer has experienced—which is often more compelling and convincing than ShipBob’s own claims.
Shipbob’s formula here is top-notch. They aren’t just telling us, with facts and figures, how they helped Hero Cosmetics solve their problems, they’re using storytelling and testimonials to make a stronger case. They also share the next steps for the brand:
Including a “what’s next” snippet at the end shows the reader that the brand’s growth doesn’t just stop where the case study ends. They are going to continue to scale and change the way the world sees acne. It’s like a happy ending to a great story. It’s no wonder 7,000+ brands trust ShipBob to fulfill customer orders.
Case studies are a powerful tool for connecting with your prospects and guiding them to make informed decisions. Adding this content type to your marketing assets will start driving new leads and sales.
2. Thought Leadership Content
As a B2B marketer in a saturated industry, standing out from competitors is crucial. Thought leadership content can help achieve that.
Thought leadership differentiates your brand in the eyes of your audience.
Since more than half of B2B decision-makers already spend over an hour a week consuming this content type, you can use it to establish authority, build trust, and attract new customers.
First Round Review does a great job of distinguishing itself from other venture capital firms. They provide insights and analysis on various topics related to startups and technology, including product development and company culture.
The team interviews experts and uses those insights to create high-quality thought-leadership content for entrepreneurs. Experienced industry professionals also share thought-provoking perspectives on important topics.
For example, this post, “Small Habits Co-Founders Can Hang On to as They Build the Plane While Flying It”. The article shares insights from the co-founders of Labelbox: Manu Sharma, and Brian Rieger:
The article showcases a number of tips from actual successful co-founders that other co-founders can use to also develop a healthy foundation.
Interviewing experts in your industry provides valuable insights that are not readily available from other sources. You also demonstrate your own expertise and knowledge of the subject matter. And you have access to their networks and communities, allowing you to reach new audiences and engage with potential customers.
These increase the value and credibility of your content and establish your company as a trusted source of information.
First Round Review’s focus on real-life experiences and insights from real companies, has received overwhelmingly positive feedback. This resulted in a significant boost in traffic, backlinks, social shares, and media coverage from notable outlets such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, and Forbes.
You, too, can leverage your connections to succeed just like First Round Review has done. Here are some best practices for creating thought leadership content:
- Identify your expertise to make yourself stand out from the crowd
- Understand who your target audience is and what their needs and interests are.
- Choose topics relevant to your target audience and current industry trends.
- Conduct original research to support your arguments and perspectives.
- Include interviews with experts or collaborate on research projects.
- Incorporate visual elements such as charts, graphs, and infographics.
Also, share your content on social media, email, and other channels to promote your content and reach new audiences.
Use these best practices to create thought leadership content that is valuable, engaging, and relevant to your target audience, and that helps establish your company as a thought leader in your industry.
3. Answer Questions on Quora, Subreddits, Facebook Groups, or Niche Slack Communities
Getting involved with online communities like Quora, Subreddits, Facebook groups, or niche Slack communities is a great way to build a strong online presence and establish yourself as a thought leader.
Sharing answers to questions connect you with prospects and other industry experts in a meaningful way. You can also use insights from these communities to get a sense of what your target audience’s needs and pain points are.
Here are some best practices to get started:
Think about what you want to achieve with these communities.
Reddit, for example, can help people find your product or service, while Quora offers more opportunities to establish your brand as a reputable authority in your industry. Both platforms are good for sharing content and reaching new audiences. But be careful not to overdo self-promotion, or you may be penalized.
SEO expert at Fundera Nicolas Straut puts it this way, “Both Reddit and Quora are great channels for distributing content and engaging with new audiences within your niche. However, it’s important to remember that excessive self-promotion may result in penalties.”
Find the right audience
Do some research to find the relevant Subreddits or Quora topics that align with your industry or niche. Observe and engage with the community—pay attention to the types of questions being asked, the language and tone used by users, and the interests and pain points of the community.
Use this information to tailor your strategy to meet your audience’s interests and address their pain points. Then, start creating and posting your own content and engaging with users in ways that resonate with them.
Follow the guidelines:
Communities have rules and guidelines for their users to follow.
For example, Reddit’s etiquette, or “reddiquette,” takes a strict stance on spammy links. Breaches can result in account suspension or even the banning of entire domains. So, you should avoid submitting the same comment to multiple Subreddits. Post links to your company’s content about 10% of the time, especially when you’re still building a reputation within the community.
Quora also works to maintain a spam-free community and has similar rules in place.
If the platform detects suspicious content, it will notify you. Repeated violations may result in being banned from the site. Instead of constantly linking to your content, think of Quora as a chance to establish yourself as an authority within your industry. Utilize your expertise and experience to provide honest answers to questions. This will prevent you from being labeled as a spammer.
4. Product-Driven Content
Product-driven content may not be as fun to create, or as engaging as the others, but it’s a great way to educate and inform consumers about your products or services.
Not only does this help potential customers make informed purchase decisions, but it also helps customers build trust and credibility with your brand.
Demos, reviews, and how-to guides can all be used to educate and inform consumers through product-driven content.
Webflow University is a fantastic example of how providing educational resources can benefit both the business and the customers. Webflow users can use Webflow University to learn how to design and develop websites using the tutorials, videos, and articles on the website:
The proof is in the pudding when it comes to the success of Webflow University:
- The page generates 78k in organic traffic per month and is valued at around $76k in organic revenue per month.
- The page has a domain rating of 92 (out of 100).
- The page has 273k backlinks.
And this is just from creating courses and lessons for their OWN product.
If you’re interested in utilizing product-driven content as Webflow has done, here are some best practices you should follow:
- Understand your customers:
Identify the most common problems or challenges that customers face when using your product. Use this information to create content and resources that address their specific needs and concerns.
By displaying frequently asked questions, Webflow University addresses the needs of their customers:
They will then create a lesson that specifically addresses the customer’s pain point:
It’s important to have an FAQ page on your website, but adding resources that go in-depth on common pain points is next-level.
This will increase customer loyalty to your brand and engage customers with your product. In this way, you demonstrate that you are looking out for their best interests.
Mix it up:
Create a variety of content formats, like text, images, videos, and interactive tutorials. This will cater to different learning styles and help keep your audience engaged.
Webflow does a great job of this by showcasing its lessons in a variety of ways. For example, they will offer a video:
Along with a step-by-step written lesson to go with it:
And they use images to accompany their written lessons to provide visual context to the user:
By offering a variety of content formats, you cater to a diverse audience, including visual learners, interactive learners, and those who prefer to find solutions quickly.
Make it easy to access:
If you want your customers to find the information they need, ensure your resources are accessible. Doing so will provide valuable information to your visitors, build trust, and position your business as a knowledgeable and helpful resource.
Webflow has an entire section dedicated to Webflow University in the resources tab of its main website:
Not only is Webflow University easy to access from Webflow’s official website, it’s also free.
Giving your audience value encourages them to share your content with their network, provide free word-of-mouth marketing, and become your diehard advocates. You can build a (small) army of fans for free!
Use Non-SEO Content to Drive Growth
SEO is a crucial aspect of content marketing, no doubt. But there are so many non-SEO channels and content types that can also drive growth for your B2B or SaaS business.
Some of these channels include:
- Case studies
- Thought leadership content
- Written answers to questions in online communities like Quora or Reddit
- Social media content
- Product-driven content
When creating these non-SEO content types, you need to follow best practices and get inspiration from some of the industry leaders we highlighted who are doing it right.
You can effectively reach a wider audience and demonstrate the value of your products and services by utilizing different types of content. Your business will, in turn, generate more leads and sales.