‘Boring’ Industries Need Social (and Content) Love, Too
March 3, 2015
OK, so you’re not in the most interesting industry. You sell stuff to other businesses who then take that stuff, configure it, and then sell services based, in part, on that stuff. Not very exciting.
Or is it? You likely have some great stories to tell about how your company helps customers do some pretty cool things. So why aren’t you sharing this better?
You need to stop thinking mass marketing appeal, and look at niches. Thing is, there are people out there who are genuinely interested your product (or at least your industry).
So instead of telling the world why your company / solution / product / service is so great, why not tailor your content to your audience, and give them some information they can use and apply to their own business?
Here are three ways to answer the bell:
1) Primary Research. Conduct a study on the industry, and publish the results. Example: Certes Networks sells security solutions to enterprises and service providers. So they teamed with a research firm and published the results of their survey. This information was highly relevant to their customers. Not only did they create a research paper out of it, but also a press release, an infographic, a video, a series of contributed blog posts to industry publications, weeks of social media posts, a webinar and a series of engaging web pages. The result? Multiple pieces of relevant, topical, “engagement-friendly” content were shared across several different mediums.
2) Pain Points. No one knows your customers like you. So dig a little, get intimate, and find out their pain points. Then, prescribe a solution. And the solution (or problem) does not have to be directly related to what you offer. In fact, it’s a better engagement tool if it doesn’t. Example. Martell Home Builders from Canada. They build homes, but their Blueprint Blog is all about helping their customers. From selling your home in the snowy season to how to maintain your heat pump, the Martell team offers usable (and memorable) tidbits of information to their customers. Not exactly a boring industry or B2B, but the lesson is the same: Build trust by helping your customers and prospects out. They’ll remember you when it comes time to make a purchase decision.
3) Stats Booklet. Share relevant and interesting stats. Example: At Calysto, we provide PR, content marketing and social media to the mobile, wireless and telecom industries. So we devised a conversation starter, and created a mini booklet “ Content Marketing, Social Media and Digital PR: 14 Stats and Quotes that Should Influence Your Communications Program.” We created a landing page, a SlideShare and of course tweeted the heck out of the stats. But we also went old-school, and printed some hard copies. We then gave these stats booklets to our customers and prospects. The information was well-designed, well-received, and well-shared.
It turns out, B2B isn’t boring at all when you stop talking strictly about product and more about solutions.