By now you’ve heard all the reasons why you should be utilizing content marketing to grow your business: it’s scalable, provides a high ROI and allows you to provide helpful information to your target audience (which gains their trust).
However, most people think they have to be in a “sexy” industry such as entertainment or travel to create content worth marketing to your demographic. That’s not true. Content marketing can be leveraged by businesses, big or small, in any industry.
This is a guest post by Dan Scalco of Digitalux.
Here are some tips to help you start using content marketing even if you’re in a “boring” industry.
Tell a story
Seth Godin famously said, “Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make but about the stories you tell,” and boy was he right. The internet has allowed people to create businesses with very low overhead. Today, really, all you need is a website and you can start selling your products/services.
While that is great for new entrepreneurs the low barrier to entry also raises competition significantly. The services you provide or products you sell are probably not much different than those of your competitors. How do you differentiate yourself and cut through the “noise” that is your competition? You can do it through content marketing.
Instead of talking about the product or service itself, talk about how the product or service benefits a specific person. Create a narrative in which the reader can identify with the main character, understand their life problems and understand how using your product/service can help.
Create outside the box
When you think of content marketing, you most likely think of blog posts. While blogging is one of the most popular forms of content marketing, there are tons of others that can be used even more in boring industries.
Let’s take the amazing Blendtec Blender viral videos campaign for example. How do you market a blender? It’s something that everyone uses but, in all honesty, isn’t that interesting. Blendtec came up with the perfect way: by taking random objects, throwing them in their blender and recording what happens.
Something so entertaining doesn’t even seem like marketing but it is! In fact, this specific marketing campaign helped boost Blendtec sales by 5x.
When you’re thinking of creating content to reach a wider demographic, keep in mind that your target audience will always want one thing—to be entertained and informed. If your content can do that, no matter what the medium is, it will be effective.
If you’re a local business, focus on local content
People want to purchase from businesses that they have something in common with. If you’re looking to attract a local demographic, you can use your location to your advantage in your content marketing efforts. Position yourself as a hub for information in and around your town. Here are a few great ideas to get you started:
- Use your blog to highlight local events and promote them on social media.
- Get testimonials from well-known individuals in the town.
- Sponsor a local event and write about it on your blog.
Being local allows you to create a connection with individuals in your community through content marketing. This is a highly effective strategy that big businesses and franchises can’t replicate.
If your product/service is boring, focus on complimentary elements
For the sake of this example, let’s say you sell tires. The amount of content you can create about tires gets pretty old, pretty fast. However, you aren’t just in the tire industry, you’re also in the auto industry. That vastly opens up the possibilities in terms of content you can create. Maybe you write about how to properly change the oil in a car or even the best ways to keep your car clean.
The point is this – don’t feel the need to stick directly to whatever it is you are selling when creating content. Try to make connections between your product/service and other aspects of your industry.
Create “how to” content
People want to do business with companies they trust. Gaining their trust over the internet can be tough. Unlike in person, you can’t look them in the eye, shake their hand and answer any question they have.
So, how do you gain their trust? With content marketing it is as simple as creating “how to” content. This type of content pulls back the curtain and lets your potential customer see exactly what it is that you do.
If you are a roofer, you could create a video explaining how you repair roofs. If you own a restaurant, you could show how your most famous meals are made. Now, you may be thinking, “Why would I give away my secrets? Aren’t they just going to use this information for themselves instead of buying from me?” Most likely they won’t. This is because they are purchasing from you because you are the expert, not them. In addition, they aren’t just making a purchase from you, they are buying back their time. Yes, they could use your information to repair their roof or make a delicious 3-course meal but that takes time that they may not have to waste.
Just because you’re in a boring industry, don’t let that hold you back from creating valuable, informative, and/or entertaining content for your target audience. Content marketing can work for your business if you use the strategies above and think outside the box.
Dan Scalco is the founder and marketing director at Digitalux, a digital-marketing agency located in Hoboken, N.J. Throughout his career, he has helped hundreds of businesses save time, increase leads and maximize sales.