Sometimes manufacturers are reluctant to get into content marketing, thinking it’s more appropriate for “soft” products like food or services. Even manufacturers who buy in to the benefits of CM may fail to pursue it for a variety of reasons: budget, limited time, uncertainty about whether your efforts have an impact, or simply the ongoing struggle to create engaging content.
CM is actually very valuable across all industries and businesses. It may sound counter-intuitive, but a crucial way to distinguish yourself in the vast sea of content out there… is more (and better) content!
Benefits of Content Marketing
How can good CM help you? Lots of ways:
- It’s cheaper than traditional / print marketing channels, offering a better ROI
- It increases organic search traffic
- It attracts high quality, qualified sales leads
- It drives more conversions
- It generates measurable, actionable data and valuable analytics
- It distinguishes your company with consistent brand messaging
- It boosts the power of your messages through tailored emails and calls-to-action
According to a 2018 study by the Content Marketing Institute, 86% of manufacturing marketers use CM. Of course, it’s one thing to use it–you want to actually benefit from it, and that’s where we’d like to help you in this article.
Quality Content is Crucial
CM relies on good, engaging content. It’s GOT to make readers react, and ideally, it should trigger an urge to share. If it’s not worth sharing, it’s probably not worth reading or remembering, so it’s better to have a trickle of high-quality content than a flood of content that isn’t relevant. Your credibility is on the line, so be critical and don’t waste your prospects’ time–you’ll turn them off.
You Don’t Need a Massive Budget
We won’t deny it: Producing good content requires time and money. You might hire a freelancer or a marketing firm, or you might tackle it in-house, but it will require some resources.
To minimize those resources, start small. First, be sure to leverage your existing content. Review your website, collateral materials, white papers, case studies and testimonials. These categories all contain content that can potentially be repurposed without a big investment. Pace yourself. You don’t need to post every day, you can stretch out your existing material by posting just once or twice a week when you’re getting started. Create a calendar and schedule out your CM, and utilize multiple channels. After you’ve posted a blog entry, you can share it on various social media channels in subsequent days or weeks.
Focus on creating useful, high-quality pieces that you can reuse after an interval, and expand on in the future. If it’s genuinely informative and well-written, it’s evergreen.
Simple Tricks for Creating Engaging Content
It’s common to face writers’ block, but use your imagination and mine your resources. Evaluate your existing testimonials, FAQs, and instructions. Find out what customers ask, say, or complain about, and respond.
Ask yourself “who are my prospects, what are my prospects interested in, what are their pain points?” You can share compelling related content, from other sources. It doesn’t have to be original, it just has to be useful and clearly attributed. Are your decision-making customers usually engineers? HR professionals? Chemists? Accountants? Share information that will help them, and they’ll remember you favorably.
Review existing content. Can you expand on anything or provide an update?
Evaluate what makes you different from your competition, and highlight it. Tell your origin story and the stories of your products, materials, employees, customers, community. Take readers behind the scenes.
Measuring Content Marketing Success
CM tends to generate so much data, you may be overwhelmed, so narrow down what you focus on as you measure success. Start by identifying your overarching goal. If you wish to build a robust social media audience, shares and likes measure your success. If your objective is qualified leads entering your funnel, measure clicks and conversions.
Would you like to know how effective your content marketing truly is? Then check out our complimentary Content Marketing Analysis Tool today! marketinganalysis.wildfigmarketing.com/free