Learn how to identify what makes your company unique and how to turn that into something customers need.
What’s your passion?
This simple question doesn’t always have a simple answer.
Some link passion to hobbies; others link it to occupations.
In manufacturing, passion is often linked to the curiosity of how things work.
As manufacturers, we like to get our hands dirty. We take things apart and reassemble them to determine better, more efficient ways to design and produce. We crave challenges and love solving other people’s problems, especially if it makes life easier in some way.
So, how do we get our customers excited about these innovative solutions and advancements? How do we help them build an easier, more enjoyable lifestyle using our brand?
How Content Marketing is Changing the Metalworking Nation
Marketing is not the same as it was 25 years ago, when companies used traditional outbound tactics, including:
- Print Ads
- Cold Calling
- Billboards and Outdoor Advertising
- Digital Ads such as Pop-Ups and Pop-Unders
- Paid App Reviews
- Press Releases
- Trade Shows
Although some of these tactics are still used today to help build brand awareness for manufacturers, they tend to focus more on pushing the product than the goals, challenges, and informational needs of the customer.
Content marketing provides manufacturers an opportunity to interact with customers through educational conversations, helping solve problems and accomplish goals. For manufacturers, content marketing helps showcase the company’s passion and tell an authentic story, which is the very foundation of their brand.
6 Steps to Building Your Brand
So, how do you start building the brand your customers want as part of their lifestyle? All it takes is 6 simple steps:
- Marketing Wheelhouse
- Do it Differently
- Content Foundation
- Nurture Your Nation
- Leverage Loyalty
- Scale Strategically
Let’s go back to that question about passion.
Begin by revisiting your particular passion and expertise. Determine how these ideas intersect in a way that is relevant to the target market. The answer will form the content marketing wheelhouse that defines the editorial mission statement.
With a clearly defined editorial mission, determine how to differentiate your content marketing efforts from others who may share a similar wheelhouse. Ask the following questions:
- Can we be the most approachable?
- Can we differentiate with personality?
- Do we have the best stories or tell stories in the most entertaining way?
- Do we have a unique format to package all of our content?
Next, think about building a good content foundation by telling a consistent story over a long period of time. To do this, consider:
- The best type of content for telling the story (featured articles, podcasts, or e-newsletters).
- The platforms the content will be posted on.
- The frequency of posts (days and times).
As you start to build your audience and gather more subscribers, learn to “nurture your nation.” This means consistently delivering valuable content to the audience at the places they are and asking for their feedback to add more value to the content. Encouraging an audience to participate in shaping the brand story will help shape the content strategy and broaden the reach.
After this, it’s important to leverage your loyalty. Think about other brands that share the same target audience. Create content that equips and inspires that audience rather than promoting your products and services. This will help gain more subscribers and loyal fans of the brand.
Finally, consider how to scale and generate returns on your investment (ROI), by asking:
- What new types of content can we create to add new sponsorship opportunities?
- What paid services could we offer?
- Is there an opportunity to launch an online course or in-person event for a fee?
- What new merger/acquisition opportunities might be built on the success of your platform?
Scaling strategically ensures that the needs of the target audience remain the focus of a company as it continues to grow by delivering the right content at the appropriate times.
For more information on how to narrate your manufacturing story and rebuild your brand to be customer-focused, visit www.makingchips.com.