Even if you’re not selling directly to the public, great content marketing is the key to obtaining more high quality manufacturing leads from the web. While there are a lot of ways to drive traffic to your website, not all website traffic will convert to a lead—plus, we all know that all leads are not created equal.
To spark a boom in business, you’ll want to create website content that attracts the attention of prospects at a key point: when they’re nearly ready to buy.
Here’s how to get more qualified leads from your website…
#1: Create a Variety of Content Packed with Specific Information
Qualified leads are looking for specific information about your products. Use your website and company blog to create content calibrated to contain the information those prospects are looking for. Options include how-to articles, brochures, white papers, charts and diagrams, and more. Be sure your content is easily searchable so your prospects can find the information they need quickly and easily.
Because you’ll likely have to bridge the gap between engineers and purchasers, ensure your website content is more accessible by “translating” your engineer-speak to informal, but still professional language that will be easier for your target audience to understand. (Unless you’re looking to attract engineers, then by all means, keep the techno-talk coming.)
Go beyond solely posting articles on your website and company blog. Build a content marketing strategy that includes other integrated marketing channels, such as: eNewsletters, print and direct mail, online presentations, webinars, infographics, case studies, and podcasts.
Research shows 80% of B2B marketers are using eNewsletters, 73% are using case studies, 63% are using online presentations, 62% using webinars, and are 26% using podcasts. Infographics have increased in popularity, from 38% in 2013 to 51% in 2014.
#2: Join the Conversation: Go Social
General Electric (GE) focuses on a number of markets, including financial services, healthcare and energy. They captivate their target audiences by posting a variety of neat content, capitalizing on brand events, and using a variety of social platforms. On YouTube, GE has nearly 59,000 subscribers. With over a million Facebook fans, more than 300K Twitter followers, over 10K followers on Pinterest, more than 150K Instagram followers, and more than 100K Vine followers, they’re casting a very wide content net to reach a broader audience with varied content.
In 2011, AT&T developed a social media strategy built around their corporate B2B blog, Networking Exchange. By offering up engaging content and leveraging the power of Twitter and LinkedIn, the two social platforms they knew their customers actively used, they were able to bring in $47 million in new business in just 18 months.
But you don’t have to be as big as AT&T or GE (and you certainly don’t have to be everywhere online) to get attention and get more qualified leads from the web. To do smaller social right, explore multiple social platforms (including Twitter, LinkedIn Groups and Instagram) to determine the best chute for your manufacturing content.
LinkedIn has the potential to be a great lead generation source for manufacturers, as it’s the real-deal platform for a number of industry decision makers. As THE B2B social platform, LinkedIn (as well as LinkedIn Groups) could be critical components to your manufacturing social strategy. In 2014, 91% of B2B content marketers used LinkedIn to distribute content.
Keep your main focus on the social channels where your target audience goes to get important industry information. Share great, engaging content, but don’t neglect to respond to comments. Reach out to offer help to your prospective clients—they’ll be very appreciative, and that could very well tip the scale in your favor.
No matter what your competition looks like, a great content marketing and social media strategy will help you gain the competitive edge. Invest in creating content that best speaks to your target audience. Take the time to analyze the online behavior of your prospects, then engage with them on their favorite social platforms—and you’re sure to get more qualified leads.
Download our FREE step-by-step, how-to guide for manufacturers Manufacturer’s Guide to Attracting More Customers for much more information on how great content marketing and social media strategies can generate more qualified manufacturing leads.