Technology is the driving force in modern society, and that doesn’t seem like it will change anytime soon. Tech companies are plentiful—so plentiful, in fact, that the competition is incredibly fierce.
For every new tech innovation we get, such as smartwatches, virtual personal assistant devices, and even smartphones, there are hundreds of companies that create spinoff products to capitalize on the success of the original.
While a full and varied product roster is important, so is content if a tech company wants to outshine the competition.
Before you get started on your tech company’s content marketing campaign, here are four things you should know about how content is used in the industry today.
4. Content Is More Than Merely Words
When you think of the word content, what comes to mind first? Probably blog posts, whitepapers, and social media posts. In short, it’s copy.
But tech companies are proving that content can be so much more than text-based.
These companies are obviously Internet-savvy, so they’re breaking the mold on what content marketing is and can be. Instead of blog posts, tech companies may sprinkle in how-to videos, live streams, and infographics as part of their marketing campaigns.
Non-tech companies are just starting to get comfortable with streaming video and infographics, which puts tech startups and other companies ahead of the game.
These videos and images are more than just aesthetically pleasing. According to a Forbes article from 2015, engagement increases exponentially when images or videos are included, up to 94 percent!
3. It’s Not All About the Branding
A blog post, when done right, presents two opportunities. The first opportunity is the chance to teach your audience about something they didn’t already know. The second opportunity is to promote your brand in the hopes of driving sales.
Today, branding is a buzzword that gets thrown about a little too carelessly. Yes, it is important to promote your brand when possible, but not at the expense of getting more leads or sales.
A late 2015 article from Business2Community states that, when appealing to buyers, more than half (59 percent) appreciated content without sales and branding messages. The content instead should be more focused on growing trends and industry developments.
At first, writing this kind of content can seem counterintuitive. If you’re not promoting yourself on your blog or on social media, what’s in it for you?
Above, we mentioned how strong content can promote you as an authoritative resource in your industry. This may not produce the immediate payback you’re used to, but over time, it can pay dividends.
The more shares you get, the more you expose your company to fresh eyes. Other tech companies may contact you about writing a guest post for them, which again gets exposure for your company.
Your article could also appear at the top of Google search engine results pages for that particular topic, making it easier for leads to find you.
2. The Tech Industry Still Has a Ways to Go
At the beginning of this summer, Contently presented what it called its Content Performance Games. These games pitted various industries against one another to determine the undisputed winner in content marketing proficiency.
Contently compared the finance industry, B2B industry, and tech industry. Of those three, the tech industry came in second place.
To glean the information used for its games, Contently reviewed 4,446 completed stories, 24 accounts, and 39 publications in the tech industry (and similar copy in the other two industries).
The games were broken down into three categories:
- The average attention time, which refers to the amount of time a user stays on a page on a website. The finance industry had the lowest average attention time, with users staying on a page for about two minutes. The tech industry had an average of about three minutes spent on the page, which is very close to the three+ minutes the B2B industry logged.
- The engagement rate; Contently counts a 15-second cursor movement rate as engagement. The tech industry did the worst here, with a 67 percent engagement rate. Compare that to finance industry’s 73 percent and B2B’s 78 percent rate.
- The average finish rate, which refers to how many users read the content in its entirety. Tech had the highest rate here, 37 percent, compared to finance (31 percent) and B2B (17 percent).
That said, the tech industry shouldn’t rest on its laurels yet. There’s still more to be done to increase average attention time and engagement rate.
1. Content Needs to Tell a Story
We hate to say it, but tech can be terribly dry to outsiders who don’t care about specs and other technical details. These customers don’t want to open a tech company’s blog and be bombarded with numbers and other data.
Marketers agree that storytelling can increase your conversion rate considerably.
Think about why you watch your favorite TV show or start a book series. You want to know what happens to the characters.
If you know how to incorporate the elements of storytelling into your copy, people will hang on your every word eager to know the fate of your characters.
You don’t have to go totally fictional if you don’t want to. It’s even better when you can use real clients who have had good experiences with your company. Your customers will think they’ll have a similar experience if they use your product or service. This may encourage them to buy.
The technology industry continues to boom, but when it comes to successful content marketing, more can still be done. By using videos and infographics, reducing brand messaging, and incorporating storytelling, tech companies can use content to differentiate themselves from the competition.
About the author
Nicole M graduated cum laude with a degree in Communications from Rider University in Lawrenceville, NJ. She has written for a slew of local newspapers in the area, covering topics ranging from town hall meetings, local government corruption, the opening of new businesses, overcrowding in schools, and even an unsolved murder mystery. In the midst of writing these articles, she has interviewed a multitude of people in person and through the phone. She also has freelance writing experience and has spent the past eight months working with a company that sources clients to research and write about a range of topics. These include religion, pet care, calories and nutrition, weight loss, allergies, diseases and conditions, medications and treatments, first-aid, workplace safety, internet and email troubleshooting, and the music business.