Last week I slightly disparaged social media for companies in B2B sectors such as science and engineering, because, well, to be honest, I’ve not come across many companies who’ve got the more important issues out of the way. I’m not saying you shouldn’t have, for example, a LinkedIn page and a Twitter feed, which can both be valuable. But it’s all about return on investment in what time and money you do have.
How does this square up with the need for “content marketing”, however? After all, this is something which as marketing managers, you’re all being encouraged to believe is the future. Isn’t content marketing all about feeding your hungry social media projects? If you don’t need to post to Facebook twenty times a week, is there any need to write lots more stuff?
Yes, there is. I’ve come round to the belief that content marketing is as important in “hard to market to” B2B sectors, such as science and engineering, as it is in consumer markets. It’s just that the outlets for your content are more limited and are more traditional. But they’re just as effective, if not more so.
In the consumer sector, companies can theoretically function without a website. Organise a cracking Twitter campaign, and kids will flock to the shops to buy your stuff. Talk about your products on Facebook, and send people directly to your online store to see and buy. This is what it’s all about, and it needs content.
If you’re dealing with engineers, architects or scientists, it’s all about email marketing and the website. But these are just as voracious in demanding content as consumer-sector social media campaigns, if not more so. For most companies, an investment in doubling or tripling the amount of articles you write can easily pay for itself. Your clients are all over your website, every day. Are the first time visitors finding something which makes them think: “these guys know what they’re talking about”? Are they finding something which encourages them to sign up to hear more from you in the future, by email? Are your returning visitors finding anything new to intrigue them? Is there a constant stream of new content to feed the Google beast, and add to your chances of being found for those searches you’ve never been found for before?
It’s all about the words. And if you aren’t getting them written, your competitors most surely are.