Just because you manufacture boring soap or lowly thumbtacks doesn’t mean that you can’t offer engaging content to the online community to further your brand.
Most would likely think of something as simple as shaver blades as a boring topic without much hope of creating enticing content. If you believe that, take a look at the following short film from Gillette (Note how many views this “boring product” video has received):
With over 33 million views to date, it’s safe to say that not everyone thinks shaver blades are completely boring. It’s just a matter of thinking outside the box, or even thinking right inside it. Like Gillette did by showing people how their can be “the best a man can get” (Gillette’s slogan) by ending harassment and bullying.
Let’s delve into just how a boring industry business can create content that gets inside the heads of prospective consumers.
Figure Out What Your Content Consumers Need
If you can identify what people surrounding the industry are looking for, creating the content that delivers it becomes much easier. Join LinkedIn group discussions, or any interesting group tweet-chats on Twitter when they come up.
Next, head over to Google and any keyword research tools you have in hand and put your industry and/or company name into the search tool. Find out what keywords people are searching for and voila! You’ve just figured out at least a few content topics that are of definite interest to people.
You’ll likely find a broad range of juicy topics related to your industry:
- Questions about what makes the industry tick.
- What people are complaining about related to your industry.
- People’s fears related to your industry (ie., pollution and other safety concerns)
Another good way to find out what people need, after you start to gain a following is to offer Q&A sessions on social media, and to have a contact form visitors can fill out on your website.
Last but not least: Ask salespeople in the industry questions about what they hear from their clients and prospects. An experienced sales rep can tell you exactly what consumers want to know about your industry and its products.
Understand Your Desired Demographic
Understanding buyer personas is what will really allow you to niche-down your content so you can deliver on all fronts.
Take the thriving, yet rather boring (and somewhat disgusting) medical waste industry for example. Say you’re selling a product or service that makes disposing of an institution or office’s contaminated waste products easier than ever: You can’t just throw a bunch of vague content out there and hope it catches interest.
Doctors, dentists, funeral home directors, etc., are going to be interested in the cost-efficiency of your products. Administrators and safety officers are going to be concerned with compliance. Those using your products or services are going to be more moved by the ease-of-use it offers and how safe it is for them.
Basically, in order to write compelling content for a boring industry, focus on writing for specific groups rather than one large industry.
Try to be Creative When Possible
If you’re trying to take the “boring” out of your industry, then try to take a break from being too professional all the time. Don’t focus your writing on whitepaper style stuff that’ll bore all but the most consummate professionals in your industry to tears. Also, don’t treat your videos like there’s some mindless science nerd on the other end that just wants the facts, happy to listen to a monotone presentation.
Want yet another example? Check out this corporate video of a company that manufacture production lines and build systems for… biscuits!
How cool is that?
Get the Content Out There
Distribution isn’t a problem for anyone in this day and age. However, it’s going to cost you. While content costs money, so does proper SEO and other online promotion. This, especially considering your operating in a “boring” industry and presumably finding it difficult to gain any momentum in your content marketing strategy.
Use paid advertising methods such as the industry targeting feature on LinkedIn. Also, use free social tools which allows you to target niche audiences. Make sure you track everything you put out there using tracking URLs, campaign tracking software, events in Google Analytics, etc. Having this information will allow you to refine your plan and make adjustments as time goes on.
- Take the time to figure out what it is consumers really want from you in terms of content.
- Write, vlog, podcast, etc., to individuals rather than the entire industry as a whole.
- Don’t be afraid to spend money. Particularly at first, when you’re trying to attract more followers to your blog and social networks.