Mackenzie | May 04, 2021 | Manufacturer Marketing
Content marketing for manufacturers is a tricky business. First, you've got to bring engineers and creatives together, and that's got problems in its own right. Then, you have to get your team of technical experts to agree on one piece of content you feel confident publishing to the web. And finally, you have to do it over and over again, with some semblance of consistency if you want to see any kind of meaningful results.
It sounds positively daunting, true.
But it can be done (seriously, we've accomplished some pretty robust content marketing strategies with more than a few manufacturers). And when you do it right, the results are irrefutable.
The case for manufacturing content is so strong, your company really can't afford to sleep on it. Let's think about it:
Manufacturing is inherently technical. It's also typically very niche. There probably aren't that many people in the world who produce what you do. I'm willing to bet you can count your direct competitors on one hand. All of those factors add up to the perfect use case to develop a meaningful content marketing strategy.
And that is a recipe for success. When you know what you're writing about, who you have to compete against to rank for it, and when there's not much else out there, you have a huge opportunity for success.
You just have to get your manufacturing company to align around a content marketing strategy. And there's no doubt, content marketing for manufacturers has a level 10 difficulty rating. But like I said, it can and has been done.
If I've said it once… well, you know. Whether you're new to the blog or have been skipping through content trying to figure out who we are, you'll see pretty quickly that understanding your buyers is one of those things I'm pretty militant about. And that's because understanding your manufacturing company's ideal buyers is the key to writing great content.
Answers to all of these questions have a significant impact on what you write and how you write it. It's important to know who your ideal buyers are, so you can create content that is targeted and tailored to them. When your ideal buyer arrives on your website and sees information that answers his or her questions, and that feels like it's written for him or her, you've already removed one barrier for your sales team. You're building that trust that prospect needs to feel like your company can solve their problems.
Rant over, but hopefully now you get why understanding your buyers is so integral to your manufacturing company's content marketing strategy. Once you know who your buyer is, you'll have a better idea of what they're searching for. Which brings us to keyword research.
Everyone seems to think it's okay to skip this step. It's really not. If you want to prioritize the marketing efforts that can and do deliver a significant return, then it's important that you implement a content marketing strategy that's backed by serious SEO.
Keyword research is where it all starts. Use one of the many keyword research tools available online to identify keywords that have a high search volume, low competition, and that are related to the work your manufacturing company does. The better your keyword research, the more effective your overall content strategy will be.
For example: if you manufacture parts for automotive applications, "agricultural tool manufacturing" is not a great keyword for you, even if it has serious search volume. Instead find keywords like, "how to find high-quality automotive test products" and "automotive OEM manufacturers near me" to guide your content strategy.
The last thing you want to do is spend a lot of time writing awesome content, only to find that no one is actually searching for what you've just written.
Without a doubt, the best way to improve your manufacturing company's position on SERPs is to write great content.
Not a great writer? That's okay — there are plenty of people out there who are. If you supply the technical knowledge, the keywords, and the purpose and general direction for each piece of content, a quality content writer or content strategist can turn that information into a useful blog, case study, or content offer that will generate results. If you want your content to rank well, it has to be good.
Google's top priority is supplying its users with high-quality content that answers their questions. Invest a little upfront in a great writer, and you'll see much larger returns when that content starts to work for you.
You've spent time and money writing great content. Now you need people to see it. Promote that great content through your social media channels, email marketing, and more. The Evenbound team is a big fan of "work smarter, not harder." Repurpose your awesome content in the way that best promotes it for the platform you're using.
For example: say you wrote a blog about your manufacturing process. Turn that blog into a simple 1-minute time-lapse video that shows your manufacturing process in real life. You could then use that same piece of content to develop an infographic that outlines the key steps of your manufacturing process. You just got three very valuable pieces of content out of one topic. Not only are you promoting your blog in a way that's well suited to each platform — Facebook, Linkedin, email, etc, but you're getting the most bang for your buck.
Once you get your content marketing strategy rolling, don't forget to look back and see how you're doing and how far you've come.
When it comes to content marketing for manufacturers, you're working in a very tight space. There are typically just a few key players (aka, your top competitors), and to stay ahead of them, you need to be very aware of how your content performs.
Keep a close eye on all the content you produce and promote. What does the best? How to blogs? Time-lapse videos? Infographics? Whatever it is, make sure you're taking the time to identify your top-performing content, so you can create more of it. And don't just focus on the positives, either. There's a lot you can learn from content that doesn't perform well. Think about why that content isn't performing well — did it miss the mark for your audience? Is there too much competition for that post to rank well? Is there a platform or medium that content might be better suited to?
For example: sometimes a blog that your sales team really pushed for might not perform well. That doesn't mean you should delete it. If your sales team thinks it's super valuable, but you're just not seeing the traffic, turn it into a whitepaper or content offer the sales team can use as they work prospects through the funnel but also gate it on your site to see if it can work for you as a lead generator in that way.
There's a lot you can learn from how your manufacturing company's content marketing strategy performs. It's no joke, though — content marketing for manufacturers isn't easy. That's why there aren't that many people doing it. That level of difficulty presents an opportunity for your company. Be one of the first to start creating genuinely helpful content that addresses your ideal client's questions and pain points, and you'll be the first to get their call, too.
Just not sure where to start when it comes to content marketing for manufacturers? We've got you covered. Evenbound has worked with manufacturers since our company's inception, and content marketing is kind of our bread and butter (you're here, aren't you?). Give us a call or schedule time with one of our team members and we'll help answer any question you have. Happy writing!
At Evenbound, we're all about helping our clients grow. We use inbound and outbound marketing strategies to deliver you the qualified traffic and leads you need for serious growth. And we have a lot of fun doing it.
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