I'm a big advocate of sharing expertise that solves a problem for the people in your target audience. Once they understand the concept, most manufacturing marketers agree that the concept and the strategy make sense. The challenge often comes in creating the vehicle to share the expertise. The vehicle could be a webinar series, white paper series, ebook, blog, podcast, etc. It is very difficult to maintain a steady stream of content over many months.
Most of us hit a wall when we think about creating all that content needed to support multiple nurturing programs, seminars, webinars, papers, etc. We Manufacturing Marketers often do not have the experience, competence or knowledge to create the content ourselves so we need to elicit help from our technical colleagues who may or may not be excited about writing content. We try cajoling, begging, bribing, commanding, sweet talking, coaxing and more to get them to write. We usually find out that only a small portion will be able to produce good content. We also find that this small group will almost always put content creation behind their primary duties. We cannot change this immutable law. We can only do the best we can to extract what we can from our technical colleagues.
Do not despair! There is a better way, an easier way: Repurpose Content.
Your first step should be to conduct a content audit. Here's a great content audit worksheet to help you get started with your content audit.
In most companies, there is a lot of content sitting around if you dig a little. Maybe it's a paper that was delivered a few years ago at a technical conference. Perhaps someone was interviewed for an article in a technical journal. There may have been a past employee who enjoyed writing and left behind some interesting and compelling application notes.
The next step is to repurpose the existing content. You'll be a hero! Here are a few tactics you could use to repurpose existing content:
- Create a podcast from an existing paper, article, application note, etc. Podcasts are easy to create in our modern digital age with a minimum of equipment and expense.
- Create a video at a trade show where the experts are already gathered. You Tube has revolutionized the world of video. In days gone by, like in the days of Mad Men, it cost tens or hundreds of thousands dollars to produce a video and quality any less than completely professional could have a negative impact on the brand. Today, all we need is a digital camera and a willing participant.
- Make a webinar out of a past training session. Webinars are just as easy to create and promote with digital technology.
- Turn a case study into a video testimonial.
- Rejuvenate an old article with a fresh perspective and a fresh look.
- Turn a seminar into a series of webinars. I've been very successful with this tactic. You can reach a lot more people with a webinar than you can with a live seminar and the leads are high quality!
That should get you started. I think you'll find that once you start digging for existing content, you will find plenty. Once you start to think about re purposing, your creative juices will start to flow and excitement will build throughout the organization. Before you know it, you'll have plenty of content for all of your fantastic content marketing plans.