In the last 6 months we’ve seen a trend emerging here at Napier. Marketing collateral is big part of our remit with our B2B technology clients and recently we’ve been involved in creating books – lots and lots of them! We’re huge advocates of the inbound methodology (in case you hadn’t noticed!) and in order to execute this methodology successfully you need great content. If you are a B2B marketer, you really should write a book!


Books for lead generation

Books are a great resource to give your prospects. Packed full of information about the challenges and frustrations your clients may face and by providing a solution of how you can help to solve them, books are up there as one of the best content giveaways for lead generation. All you need is a landing page with a form, some compelling copy about the contents of your book and a PDF copy of the book itself [link to landing pages blog]. The reason why books work so well is that they are seen as highly valuable by prospects and the exchange of an email address for all this great information seems like a fair deal.


Books as a sales tool

In just the same way that books can help you to generate leads, they are also great as a leave behind at a meeting or take-away from a trade show. By creating your own book you can customise the content as you see fit and create different versions for each of your buyer persona’s or industry verticals. Sales people work best when they have all the tools to hand and a branded book, with all your vital statistics enclosed, helps them to feel confident and keeps your company top of mind. This book can be used to write notes to highlight areas of interest for your prospect during a meeting and then can be given to the potential client to keep, adding value to your company’s offering in the prospects eyes and increasing the potential for conversion. As this is your book, your contact details are already included, ready for when the prospect wants to get in touch.


Isn’t a book time consuming and hard to write?

A book sounds like hard work, but in reality you probably have all the content you need sitting on your server. Books don’t have to be long or full of flowing prose – books can be a collection of all of your ‘best bits’ of collateral and marketing messages held together in one place. A great example is a Coverage book that we created for one of our clients [include link to coverage book post]. This book is used by the sales team to showcase their expertise in the automotive software testing industry. We’ve since gone on to produce an additional 5 industry vertical specific books for this client in English, as well as German to help them reach their target market.


Don’t you need fancy and expensive tools to bring it all together?

To create a professional looking book you do need to use some tools but they don’t need to be fancy or expensive. There are numerous online self-publishing platforms that you could use if you want your book to live online, or specialist services that can print short runs – ideal if you don’t want to commit to storing thousands of copies.


What should you include?

This really depends on who you are writing your book for but examples of useful things to include are:

  • Datasheets
  • Whitepapers
  • Relevant editorial coverage
  • Case studies
  • Q&A’s or interviews
  • Print quality images of your products (if relevant)
  • Industry tips from FAE’s or other technical staff

If you’re considering creating a book then don’t forget to think about who you’re writing for and how you’ll use the end product. Creating a book is much simpler than you think. If you want help or advice with writing a book then get in touch.