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Engineering, logistics, and time-tested processes drive the quantifiable foundation of manufacturer success. However, content strategy also plays a role in manufacturer success.
Marketing strategy leverages data points to reveal niche buyer profiles. This data showcases future customers who are in the research phase of their path to conversion. Previously, less targeted traditional advertising, aimed at too broad an audience. Inbound marketing focuses the message toward users who are actively searching for your services.
Carefully curated content is the core of an effective inbound strategy. Engaging content speaks for your company as the first point of contact. It educates new leads, answers questions and becomes an organic pull strategy that generates new leads at scale.
Inbound marketing content helps you build a better customer
Manufacturing buyers want the best: quality, rates, service. A 2015 Forrester survey found that 74 percent of business buyers use digital media for over half of their research before making first contact with a company, bypassing the awareness stage of the sales cycle to compare value and verify results.
Engaging content positions your organization as a progressive industry leader by educating your customers and fostering better lifetime relationships.
Creating content at scale lowers risk as optimized knowledge permits future personalization, reflecting customizable solutions to competitively innovate.
Content is perfect for long sales cycles
Content strategy speaks to the buyer at each stage of the sales cycle, informing, messaging promotions and supporting back-end Google searches. A variety of content maximizes the opportunity for a right place, right time approach.
White papers, case studies, eBooks and webinars are the most popular content types, supported by a combination of other evergreen and topical pieces. Properly executed, they unite your company voice and messaging by focusing on conversion targeting.
Ultimately, you should build a user-friendly educational hub to house all content for when the buyer needs information. This allows you to build a reputation as an authority in your industry.
Awareness marketing creates better visibility through scalable targeting
Manufacturing has an advantage over other industries where the majority of future business begins in the consideration phase.
Rather than a new prospect challenge, your outbound marketing messaging benefits by targeting a smaller audience, minimizing investment in favor of qualified reach.
Awareness content includes press releases, seasonal campaigns and thought leadership pieces published on a strategic schedule, with efficient distribution based on past buyer response behavior.
Content thrives and excels within the consideration stage
As top manufacturing players separate from the rest, buyers compare key competitor differences to inform their business partnerships. It is to your benefit to provide their education.
Within this comparison stage, listening to the conversation within your industry is vital to content creation. Stepping in at the correct time with the right answer is almost as good as answering a question before it is asked.
When your hub of educational content becomes evergreen, established as gospel, with only infrequent content updates, your investment will continue to pay off and cement your reputation.
Content speeds conversions
Inbound content accelerates the time it takes to close. A thoroughly informed buyer will feel confident in making a decision. If your buyer is already speaking your language and has an understanding of your capabilities and those of the industry, they are prepared to convert.
And through their word-of-mouth recommendations, your investment in targeted content will continue to provide returns.
You already have the digital indicators to inform your content creation
Inherent trackability directs the production of effective content. If you know where to look, you can harvest keywords. Keywords are terms and phrases that drive buyers to your business from a number of existing sources to attract customers.
Web analytics provide keyword data from the terms users enter into the search bar on your site. Similarly, referral traffic categorizes organic searches, indicating terms users entered into a search engine to discover your company. Content site views, bounces, and time on site also color the customer engagement picture.
Hashtags are useful as a discovery tool within social media, specifically on LinkedIn to engage with a B2B audience.
Understanding what buyers will be searching for, when they are looking, and how long they are willing to read turns proper content execution into new business wins. Using this information, a manufacturer could publish a 600-word white paper on how new regulations limit future delivery before they go into effect and establish authority on the subject.
Ideally, your content should establish you as a trusted authority within your industry and place your evergreen pieces near the top in future searches.
Further, you can strategically repurpose foundational, quality content to recover investment costs and strengthen your industry authority. The cornerstone content that makes up your educational hub become your brand ambassador if it is well-written and delivers what future buyers need before they ask.