When it comes to blogging, manufacturing companies often face a common but frustrating problem:
What, exactly, is there to blog about?
The common perception is that blogs feature fun, zippy company updates and PR fluff. So where does a more serious, thoughtful company blog fit in?
Unfortunately, this line of thinking often pushes companies to the opposite end of the spectrum. The result is that they deliver boring, technical blog posts that don’t entice their target customers. The real power behind a prospect-friendly blog lies somewhere in the middle.
Focus your manufacturing company blog on your customer’s needs
Though many aspects of your business are very specialized in nature, your manufacturing company blog doesn’t need to be overly technical. After all, your blog is there to attract people searching for information, not to solve technical problems for them as they search.
Most importantly of all (and maybe much to your surprise), your customers don't care about your company or its technical know-how. What they care about most is finding solutions to their problems. They have a need for a manufacturing company blog that focuses on the benefits they will unlock by working with you.
Here are five powerful blog post ideas that will allow you to focus on your customer’s needs and interests in a non-technical way, and without disclosing your intellectual property:
1. Feature real-life product, process, or equipment demonstration videos.
YouTube is exploding with traffic and opportunity. More than 800 million unique users visit YouTube each month, watching more than 4 billion hours of video. This is a great indication that your target customer would respond to a product, process, or equipment demonstration on your manufacturing company blog.
Simply grab your iPhone and head to your production facility (or R&D facility). You can crank out a professional, informative video that gives value to your customer in an hour’s time or less! (Just don’t expect a well-targeted B2B marketing video to go viral…)
2. Repurpose content to appeal to a variety of customers.
Blog topics aren’t one hit wonders. When you have identified a topic that resonates with your customers, feel free to repurpose it in multiple mediums.
For example, you can turn a popular blog post into an enticing SlideShare, or turn a video demonstration into a full-length blog post with screenshots as photos. This practice will not only help you reach customers with different content preferences, but viewing the same content in different formats will also increase each customer’s overall exposure to your manufacturing company blog.
3. Use survey questions to inform and engage customers.
Asking your customers questions can inspire two kinds of interesting content for your manufacturing company blog.
For starters, you can compile the results of a short website survey into an infographic or list of statistics on your blog. In addition to sharing visuals of this data, you can also provide your insights and observations on the results. You can also pull questions from your sales team and your email inbox and answer them on your manufacturing company blog as an industry Q&A.
Both of these question-based content ideas will do very well on social media and encourage discussion within your blog comments.
4. Go on a rant.
Okay, maybe don’t actually rant. But since your manufacturing company blog is your blog, you should feel free to clearly express your opinion. Seek out a hot-button topic, perhaps one that you’ve discussed with customers in the past. Write a post outlining your position and pulling in relevant case study examples to back yourself up.
Not only will this kind of post encourage customer dialogue within your blog comments, but it will also position your company to stand out from other bland blogs that don’t take a stand. An opinion post is also a great opportunity to correct any customer misinformation or misinterpretations that may exist with your own data, insight, and opinions.
5. Keep your customers informed.
While you don’t need to provide technical information, anything you can share about your industry will help position your organization as a company that is in touch with the latest trends in your industry.
To that end, consider compiling links and updates on industry surveys, studies, or breaking news in a single monthly or weekly blog post. These kinds of updates not only tap into timely SEO opportunities, but they will let your customers know that you’re keeping an eye on evolving trends.
Your manufacturing company blog can be a powerful source of web traffic and inquisitive customer contact. Don’t feel pressured to provide highly technical posts to meet the needs of your customers-- just use the interesting and relevant data at your finger tips to create helpful, engaging blog content.