Manufacturing and industrial companies need to think strategically about their digital marketing. While content marketing remains an excellent way to attract new customers and forge relationships with important clients, only 22% of manufacturers described themselves as mature content marketers. Discover how you can utilize the latest content marketing for manufacturing research to engineer a marketing strategy that fits your industry and your business model.
Effective Content Marketing Strategies
One of the largest hurdles for the manufacturing industry is a lack of industry-specific content marketing strategies. Many companies rely on a generic strategy that doesn’t take into account their unique relationships with their clients, which makes content marketing far less effective.
The most difficult part of content marketing for manufacturing companies is the highly specialized nature of the industry. You aren’t selling a generic product or service but instead, supply a highly specialized skill or component for a particular industry. This creates a few challenges that aren’t faced by other industries attempting to win a share of the market through effective content marketing. Here are some initial steps for improving your manufacturing content marketing:
Create a Written Plan
According to the latest research from the Content Marketing Institute, only 10% of beginning marketing strategies are written down. An unwritten plan isn’t much of a plan at all. Without proper documentation, goal setting and record-keeping, it’s extremely difficult for a manufacturing company to improve their content marketing strategy and reach their goals.
If you don’t have an official, written document on file that outlines the direction your content marketing needs to take, take the time to craft one with your marketing team. This plan should be subject to continuous revision, with the goal of creating visible, measurable improvements in your overall marketing success. A written plan should be detailed enough to help steer the course of your marketing strategy but can be general enough to cover a variety of media and strategic moves as you respond to the latest trends in your industry.
Schedule Consistent Content
Sporadic content, like sporadic production, is a recipe for a failed project. A fundamental benefit of successful content marketing is having a clear schedule that is understood by your audience. Whether you publish content once a week, once a month or create a quarterly e-newsletter, a schedule allows you to ensure content will continue to be published and updated to keep your marketing relevant.
Utilize Realistic Expectations
Many manufacturing companies decide to invest in other marketing tools when they fail to see measurable results in just a few weeks or months. When you invest in organic content marketing, you need to wait at least 12 to 18 months to see measurable results.
Unlike short-term paid advertising alternatives, like pay-per-click marketing and Google Ads, content marketing is an organic strategy that requires slow progress and a natural, steady growth in traffic.
Craft Creative Content
Growing your content marketing is extremely difficult without unique, engaging and creative content. Few manufacturing companies invest in creative content that is geared toward their intended audience. Whether you struggle to make your technical services sound engaging or you can’t seem to find a content marketing team that can add critical information to an otherwise engaging message, it’s essential to strike a balance between the two for productive marketing.
One popular strategy for using creative content is repurposing popular pieces. If you have a particular web page or blog post that is receiving a large number of views, you may have identified a gap in knowledge or a popular pain point among customers. Consider how you can continue to promote this content or repurpose it into a new medium. From informative videos to infographics, work with a variety of media to help stretch this content further.
Streamline Your Content Marketing
For many marketers, producing specialized content efficiently is their biggest concern. Up to 44% of marketers struggle to achieve a streamlined content marketing system. Without a dedicated team of content marketing specialists, creating industry-leading content and engaging advertising can be particularly difficult for industrial and manufacturing companies.
Learn how you can use the latest research, SEO and organic marketing tools to forge a partnership with an effective content marketing firm. When searching for ways to leverage your marketing through outsourcing, consider a team who understands these key areas of content marketing for manufacturing:
- Effective research strategies
- Trending news in your industry
- Industry-specific terms and technologies
- The manufacturing buying cycle
Discover how each of these areas can impact the overall success of your content marketing campaign. Whether you’re just starting digital marketing for your company or you need to rebrand and launch a new campaign to improve lead generation and brand awareness, here are some key factors to look for in a content marketing partner.
The Importance of Effective Research
Without the latest analytics and research methods, your marketing will be moving blindly. Be sure that you or your marketing partner use in-depth research techniques to identify your target audience, track which messages are most effective with your audience and redirect your overall strategy to hone in on effective practices.
Research should be an ongoing feature of your marketing team. Even the most thorough research can only estimate how a particular marketing campaign can connect with your customers. Further research is needed to check the progress of your content and continue to find new ways to improve brand awareness and lead generation.
Talk About Trending Topics
A major benefit of routine content marketing schedules is your ability to key in on trending topics. Whether a recent regulation was updated, a new competitor entered the field or your company just launched a new product range or service, your content should keep up with all the latest news in your business and industry.
Your marketing team can also help you stay on top of the latest news with trending software and other essential web tools. This allows you to stay aware of major and minor shifts in your industry and establishes your company as a knowledgeable, relevant source of industrial information.
Unique Industrial and Manufacturing Considerations
Unlike other industries, your manufacturing and industrial company connects with your customers in unique ways. Depending on your products and services, these relationships can vary. In general, however, many of your customers are other businesses who establish long-term contracts and bulk orders for your parts and services.
This sort of relationship creates unique situations that need to be managed in ways different than a retail store or food industry business. For example, few of your motivated customers need an in-depth description of your services. Despite performing services or manufacturing components for a highly specialized niche, most of your online traffic and relevant content readers are going to be experienced in your industry.
This puts even more value on continuous, knowledgeable content. Your business doesn’t serve the same breadth of audience that many other industries serves, so you need to rely less on widespread social media posts and boosted advertisements and concentrate on factual, quality content.
Content Marketing and the Manufacturer Buying Cycle
Your manufacturing clients will also be operating with a slightly altered buying cycle than other companies. Because of your technical expertise in a particular area, you may benefit from focusing on education and thought leadership at the initial stages. Rather than seeking to win over a client through promotional materials, simply leverage your content to establish your company as a leader in the manufacturing industry.
After that, you can highlight case studies and examples of previous work. Case studies are a driving factor that helps your audience understand the level of production and quality of products and services you provide.
Finally, many manufacturing companies provide highly customizable and personalized services. This makes it difficult to funnel your clients into a one-size-fits-all approach. Instead, tailor your content to starting a relationship and helping them explore some of the potential projects you’re capable of handling. From there, your marketing should encourage your clients to start a conversation and create a working relationship with your company.
Redefining Marketing Success
Because of the long-term nature of manufacturing relationships and the relatively small pool of target customers, your company needs to think creatively about measurements of content marketing success.
Many content marketers use generic statistics, such as page views, to determine an improvement in lead generation. However, because your market is highly specialized, you may see a large number of viewers who aren’t motivated buyers. Your marketing team needs to sift through views and identify which customers are motivated and which aren’t. This takes a particular set of research skills and a commitment to creating conversations with customers.
Boost Your Content Marketing Today
Just like you work with relationship-based sales techniques, Momentum is committed to forging a relationship with your company. Based on research-driven, results-focused marketing, Momentum is an industry-leading content marketing agency that can propel your manufacturing business ahead of your competition. If you’re ready to discuss how we can craft a personalized content marketing strategy for your business, contact us today. Our team not only understands the latest in content marketing software and strategies but is experienced working with highly specialized manufacturing and industrial companies by producing measurable results.