Break Into B2B Writing and Ditch the Content Mills

by | Jan 11, 2021 | Freelancing | 31 comments

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Are you tired of grinding your way to burnout writing $8 and $15 articles in content mills?

There’s a better way to build a business as a freelance writer. Breaking into B2B writing allows you to tap into an incredibly valuable form of content development, one that marketing managers are spending as much as $5.2 billion every year

If you’re a naturally talented writer with a healthy curiosity about how businesses operate, you could jump on stable, profitable assignments that run upwards of $1 per word.

Here’s a bit of background information about B2B writing and what it takes to be successful in this lucrative writing field.

What is B2B writing?

B2B writing stands for business-to-business writing. It’s the other side of the coin with B2C writing, or business-to-community writing. In B2C writing, you’re helping a company sell products to consumers like you and me. In B2B writing, you’re helping a company sell products to other companies.

Think of it this way: in B2C writing, you’re writing ad copy and emails to sell the cute holiday sweater in an e-commerce store, or the delicious pineapple in the grocery store. 

In B2B marketing writing, you’re helping the e-commerce store choose the right platform for selling sweaters, and you’re helping the pineapple growers understand the best shipping and logistics software to get their pineapples to the right store at the right time.

Your job as a B2B copywriter is to write the blog posts, white papers, case studies, infographics and more to help those companies make their value clear to their customers — which happen to be other companies. 

Why it’s worth becoming a B2B copywriter

According to the Content Marketing Institute’s 2021 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends survey, businesses need content.

Ninety-three percent of organizations engage in content marketing for their businesses, but they often run into roadblocks keeping up with demand. That means there’s a huge built-in market for writers who know how to talk about business problems and sell products and services to other businesses.

These clients already know they need your services and they already know your services are worth the cost. They just need to meet you and get sold on the fact that you’re the right writer for them.

Skills you need to be successful in B2B copywriting

You know the market is there, so how do you know you’ll enjoy the work? Here are three skills you’ll need to be successful or desirable as a B2B copywriter:

  1. Writing talent: You know how to put words together into convincing and well-received sentences. You know how to convey meaning clearly for readable, relatable online content.
  2. Business awareness: You understand that businesses invest in products and services to make more money and then re-invest that money in their products and services. You know how customer service, marketing, leadership and sales work together to keep a business afloat (and if you run your own business, you definitely know this!)

  3. Digital research savvy: You know how to perform research online to uncover interesting statistics and quickly understand the lingo businesses use for their products and services. You have a basic knowledge of SEO keywords and writing for search engines to help businesses get online traffic.

If you aren’t strong in any of these three areas, that’s where you can hone in on your training to grow your B2B skills and become a great B2B copywriter.

How B2B marketing writing is different

Writing for a B2B audience is a topic that could be a whole course. But you can get started in this field by understanding a few simple principles.

First, understand that the B2B audience is made up of people who represent a company. While for B2C writing you write to an individual who is making choices for himself, when you write for a B2B audience you’re writing for an individual who is making choices for his place of work. He’ll need to justify this purchase to his boss or his boss’s boss, and he’ll want to know all of the technical details up front.

Second, know that the B2B audience values statistics and information about the return on investment (ROI) that comes from the products or services being advertised. Essentially, they want to know that spending $1,000 on the product you’re advertising will net the company $2,000 or $5,000 more revenue. Any investment needs to provide a return.

Finally, B2B audiences take in information in the marketing age in many different ways. B2B marketing writing can take the form of blog posts and articles on a company’s website, or articles via a high-traffic publication like Forbes or Inc.

B2B audiences also might need to receive content in the form of press releases, white papers and case studies, each of which have their own format, best practices, and price points.

If it sounds like B2B writing could be a good fit for you, don’t waste another minute writing for low-paying content mills.

Dig deeper into which businesses could benefit from your writing specialty and craft a few example pieces with these principles in mind.

This is an updated version of a story that was previously published. We update our posts as often as possible to ensure they’re useful for our readers.

Photo by Ekaterina Bolovtsova from Pexels