How my content contributes to your marketing results
- White papers
- Case studies
- Press releases
- Blog posts
- Brochure content
- Video scripts
- Social media and website content
- Others as required
If you’re responsible for marketing and selling technical products, you’ll be aware of the need for both lead generation and brand recognition. It can be difficult to convert web traffic and enquiries into sales unless your brand is accepted, while brand recognition alone is of no use unless it drives sales success.
That’s why companies run content marketing campaigns to grow sales by achieving these twin objectives. These campaigns can be built up by setting the various genres listed above – from press releases to white papers – to work synergistically with one another to generate an effective solution.
For example, in some companies the engineer designing-in your products is also the decision-maker and purchaser; in others, though, engineering and purchasing are two different roles. These call for different content types – technical material to engage the engineers, and documents such as case studies to convince purchasers that your organisation will be a good partner to work with.
Although I refer to content, I actually use both content and copy in the various types of promotional literature that I generate. See here for a good discussion of the difference between content and copy.
I can design and implement content marketing campaigns if appropriate. However, clients may instead require me to write selected pieces which they then integrate into their own content marketing strategy. One networking client, for example, was generating plenty of leads through a Pay Per Click campaign, but wanted me to write some thought leadership articles to establish their technical authority in their marketplace. In this case, as for many others, my content input complemented my client’s internal marketing resource.
So how do I write content that complements your resources and achieves results?
I start by asking you what you want to achieve from the exercise. Is the emphasis on generating more traffic and leads, reputation building, or both? Are you seeking to convince engineers of your offering’s technical advantages to them, or to satisfy purchasing professionals that your company will be a good partner to work with?
I also review the content types you want to use, together with the channels for its distribution. The content should work as hard as possible, maximising its ‘bang per buck’.
Budgets and timescales are essential topics. It’s particularly important to establish a shared understanding of exactly what is to be delivered, when, and for what cost. It’s also essential that I comprehend your existing resource, so that I can work in partnership with your named contacts, while ensuring my effort efficiently complements your own.
Next, I work with you to gather promotional and technical material that will allow me to build an effective story – see ‘Telling a story that achieves results’ below for more about this.
Once you have approved the content, I either pass it over to your Marketing department for their use, or distribute it, depending on our arrangement.
We can then agree on metrics for success, and how to measure them; for example, how many titles published a story, or how much traffic to your website page.
Telling a story that influences your audience
You expect marketing documents to perform in persuading your prospects to take the actions that you want. In this context, even overtly technical material such as a white paper exists to fulfil this function, even if the required outcome is somewhat subtle; typically persuading your audience to see you as an expert and trusted supplier within your field.
To elicit these responses, we must lead readers along a logical path through attracting their attention, developing their interest in your offering’s benefits, convincing them of your claims’ validity and then closing or asking them to take a desired action. The exact approach depends on the type of document and the project, but these considerations influence the way I develop content for you as shown in the steps below:
- Capturing your audience’s attention and interest
What is the single most important benefit of your offering? What problem does it solve for your prospects? What other benefits does it have? Why are you excited about its new opportunities?
I can obtain this information by discussing the offering with you or your product managers, marketing managers or other product champions, or by interviewing your users. I will back this by browsing relevant sales literature.
- Convincing your audience that they can accept your stated claims
Once you have engaged your prospects’ interest, they will want to convince themselves that they really could benefit as you claim from using your product or integrating it into their own.
I can supply the content they need after more detailed conversations with yourselves or your colleagues, or by extracting more detailed information from technical documentation, related articles and white papers, and any other source provided. I can also carry out wider research, but this tends to be for background. The core information inevitably has to come from you!
- Call to action and close
What action do you want the reader to take after viewing the article? Click for more information, to join a mailing list or to download an e-book? Contact your Support Department for an in-depth discussion of their requirement? Call a salesman to obtain a quotation? In any case, we should conclude the article by asking for the response we want.
My ’call to action’
I hope the above usefully explains my approach to generating content. It is, however, just an introduction and therefore generalised. In reality, every client’s requirements are highly individual, based on their particular objectives, products or service, marketplace, circumstances, budget and timescales.
Accordingly, I have long experience of adapting my service to clients’ particular circumstances to achieve results efficiently. Contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org or +44(0)20 8933 0917 for a no-obligation discussion about your objectives and how I would achieve them.