Does this sound familiar?
You’re at a backyard barbecue and you meet the neighbor’s new boyfriend who’s in from Dallas for the weekend. After the initial introductions and a limp handshake, he opens his mouth and utters the phrase you always dread:
“So, what do you do?”
It’s not that you’re ashamed of your job or the company you built from the ground up. Far from it! You absolutely love what you do and you know the value it creates for customers and partners alike.
The trouble is…
No one else gets it.
See, your automatic response is to launch into an enthusiastic explanation of the intricacies of your industry and all the ways your company blows the competition away. You don’t just have an elevator speech prepared. You’ve got enough to take the stairs if they want to!
But, all too often, before you’re three sentences in, you can see their eyes start to glaze over. A few more sentences in and they’re scanning the crowd hoping for rescue. If you manage to make it to the five-minute mark, you’re fairly sure they’re either going to feign a heart attack or just run away screaming.
And frankly, you don’t understand why you always seem to bore people so badly.
But we do.
Are you ready for the explanation?
You work in an unglamorous industry.
I know, I know.
It’s an eye-opener every time we reveal the truth to a dedicated businessperson like yourself. From the inside looking out, your cloud computing platform is the most exciting, fun subject you can imagine discussing. Being immersed in it all day, your widget factory is like one constant party.
But how can you express that joy and excitement to someone on the outside looking in?
Most importantly, how can you turn your passion and excitement into something your prospects and customers can understand and help them catch on?
Through years of experience helping clients from dozens of different industries, we’ve found innumerable ways to shine the light deep into seemingly unglamorous industries and highlight the most interesting and compelling stories that are just begging to be told.
Here are three of the benefits our inbound marketing approach can provide for businesspeople like you who want to help prospects and customers understand and join you in your passion.
Inbound marketing provides the education needed throughout a long, complex sales cycle.
In most unglamorous industries, the sales cycle is fairly long and complicated. The products may have a very high ticket price, or may require a level of commitment that requires buy-in throughout the customer’s organization. The details may be highly technical or the product and service line may require a great deal of personalization or customization.
Whatever the reason, education is the key to easing customers through the cycle at a pace that’s comfortable for them. These days, customers do as much as 90% of their decision making before reaching out to a human salesperson anyway, so it only makes sense to have quality educational content available to answer any and every question they may have up to that point.
The content we create for unglamorous industries not only educates prospects and guides them through the sales funnel in a strategic way, it offers the dual benefit of creating targeted visibility in the search engines – the number one means by which leads are going to find you in the first place.
Inbound marketing offers numerous ways to simplify the “techlish” you’re speaking.
Admit it: when you happen to run into someone who lasts longer than that guy from Dallas, you quickly falling into acronyms and fifteen-syllable words that no one but you and the president of your industry’s second most popular trade organization might understand.
It’s another common symptom of the kind of intense tunnel vision passionate business leaders in unglamorous industries share in common.
Inbound marketing offers a host of options for translating your complex industry terminology into approachable and understandable prose that captures interest and makes outsiders feel like insiders. Once that’s been accomplished, you’re in a far better position to speak directly to them and move them to action.
Inbound marketing helps you build trust with people you’d otherwise just bore.
Building trust is one of the toughest things any business can do. Today’s consumers are automatically skeptical and leery of any messaging that appears overly salesy.
But well written content created strategically according to inbound marketing best practices has the opposite effect. It’s helpful, not hype-filled. It’s informative, not informercialish.
In short, it doesn’t appear like a commercial or product advertisement. Instead, it provides helpful information that provides the answers your audience is searching for.
What it all comes down to – and where inbound marketing truly shines above traditional marketing in unglamorous industries – is speaking person-to-person (P2P) rather than business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C). After all, it’s people who are making the buying decisions anyway.
So, are you that barbecue guest who’s dreading the question, “what do you do?” If so, check out our free download about switching your business mindset to P2P.