I think it all began in 2013. That's when the content marketing wave (more like a tsunami) crashed upon the shores of facility suppliers in North America. CEOs/COOs emerged from their corner offices, gave their marketing department marching orders to crank out content to fill every possible marketing channel, then retired to their beachfront properties.
Most forays into CML (Content Marketing Land), including yours, are doomed to fail. And here's why.
Reason #1 Your Content Is Boring
The copy is meaningless drivel. Reconstituted, regurgitated, reworked ideas from 3rd party sources. Nothing original. Nothing refreshing. Nothing worth reading, let alone responding to.
Want to see FM content that's different? Check out the e-book "What Drives FMs to Drink...65 Crazy, Outrageous Occupant Complaints"
It's not easy to get good content like that. Don't count on your in-house team to produce it. They don't have the time. You can't expect your ad agency to produce it. They don't have the FM industry knowledge. And you can't hire freelancers to crank out copy. They don't have the contacts.
Want to own the rights to FM content that gets noticed and delivers leads? Here are some topics we have in the que.
• Building Security
• LED/Lighting Controls
• Building Automation and IoT
• Fire/Life Safety
• Windows & Doors
• Plumbing/Restroom Design
Reason #2 Your Content Distribution Sucks
Your content is useless if you don't get it in front of FMs. Blame it on being too busy. Too lazy. Or under-funded. But too often we don't distribute our content through a variety of different channels. Here are a couple of low-cost, easy ways to get the word out on your content.
Email newsletter. (Create one or have a respected 3rd party with a FM following custom-build one for you)
Marketing email to a landing page. (Send a blast to your customer list and one to a 3rd party's file).
Post it on Facebook.
Share it on LinkedIn.
Tweet it several times, and ask for retweets.
My take on the use of social. Tread carefully. FMs are not big users of social media. (Probably cuz most of them are 50+ years-old.) So you end up reaching a lot of other manufacturers who are trolling the social waters. Kind of like preaching to the choir. And to make things worse, many companies block social media from stations and don't allow employees to be on Facebook or LinkedIn during work hours. I've learned the hard way that social is best used to reach up-and-comers, the next generation of facilities executives. Think of it as planting seeds today for product sales tomorrow.
Reason #3 You lack brand reputation and consistency
Getting FMs to engage and trust content marketing is a huge problem for suppliers. To begin with, manufacturers are not an unbiased source. They have something to sell. Consequently FMs are gonna be suspicious of both the motives, and the content. In addition, content marketing is not a one-off. You have to consistently deliver valuable, useful content; day in and day out. Most manufacturers I know do not have the resources to accomplish this. I tell them their best bet is to partner with a non-manufacturer-aligned content developer that is already providing content on a regular basis.
Reason #4 You have lousy SEO
If you have poor SEO, you might as well not bother with creating content. No one's gonna find it. So, you have two choices. One, pay big bucks to hire an SEO consultant or agency to conduct a thorough audit on the status of your SEO. Or two, partner with a respected industry entity that will help ensure your content ranks on page one.
Next month I'll look at examples of good content marketing. The kind that produce leads. In the meantime, email, InMail or call me.
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