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Digital Marketing for Engineers Blog

A 3 Step Method for Creating Marketing Content that Reaches Engineers

Posted by John Hayes

Apr 19, 2018 9:15:08 AM

Engineers are remarkably adept at keeping a high signal to noise ratio in their inbox. Content that isn’t constantly delivering value is aggressively re-routed to unseen folders like Gmail’s Social Updates or Outlook’s Other.

Even worse, they may delete it on sight, or even mark it as spam, thereby blocking you off and dinging your list’s credibility.

This is terrible news for marketers.

If you spend days and weeks getting your editorial calendar just right, identifying the right authors within your organization, pleading with them to finish their posts, and then proudly packaging their stories into a company e-newsletter, this is devastating news.

Although it isn’t really news, is it? You already know from your email open rates and CTRs that engineers are filtering out your messages.

So what’s the answer? Does the path to higher engagement lie with better content or better distribution? It’s both, of course. In this post we’ll explore what better content means when it comes to reaching engineers. We’ll save the distribution topic for another time.

These insights are based on how we make sure that engineers read/watch or listen to content from engineering.com, where our content reaches over 2.3 million engineers every month.

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Topics: Content marketing for engineers, Marketing to engineers

4 Things (The Data Shows) Top Performing Marketers Do Differently

Posted by Andrew McWhaw

Apr 5, 2018 10:35:32 AM

When I was in my early twenties, I worked in a comic book shop after school and on weekends.  This wasn’t just any comic book shop – at the time we were one of the largest seller of collectibles on the East Coast, slinging comics and trading cards (and way too many Webkinz).  Our mini-Amazon and the mountains of USPS boxes we amassed each week were the vision of my boss Eddy—a powder-keg of a man, explosive in ideas and temperament, incapable of sleep and obsessed with winning in all things.

One day Eddy turned to me and said, “eBay is running an auction to have lunch with Warren Buffett.  I don’t think there is another person alive who I’d rather sit down to lunch with.” Being more interested in cards than business at this point, I shrugged and told him I didn’t really see why it’s worth much of anything at all.  I think Eddy went into shock.  After a moment he looked at me, with a tone in his voice as if he was speaking to an alien completely oblivious to the order of the world, and stated, “He’s the best. Think of what you could learn just by studying what he does and getting to ask him questions.”

Why the long anecdote? Well besides the nostalgia, today I’m going to offer you some insights from the best.  Not Warren Buffett (sadly), but from the marketers who killed it in 2017 and are poised to conquer in 2018.  The data comes from a recent survey that engineering.com issued to fans of this blog and to our customers.

The full study, 2018 Budget Trends in Industrial & Technology Marketing, has a ton of great information any marketer could use, but this post is all about the winners—the Serena Williams, Mike Trouts, and Meryl Streeps of the marketing world—and what they’re doing differently.

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Topics: Content marketing for engineers, Industry trends and research, Display advertising and banners, Marketing to engineers

Seven Deadly Sins of B2B Technology Marketers

Posted by John Hayes

Jun 29, 2017 11:08:52 AM

The seven deadly sins – sloth, pride, envy, lust, greed, gluttony, & wrath – few concepts are so thoroughly embedded in the collective conscience.  The sins as we know them can be traced back to 270 AD, which just might predate technology marketing.  

As marketers, we can be guilty of our own sins, from leaving lead generation to the end of the quarter to failing to measure our results.

Based on my experience as a marketer, here is a list of seven deadly marketing sins and how you can deliver some salvation to your remaining campaigns in 2017.

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Topics: Content marketing for engineers, Branding and awareness, content strategy, Content Promotion

Awareness Marketing for Industrial Companies

Posted by Achinta Mitra

Jun 14, 2017 4:33:03 PM

Awareness marketing doesn’t get much attention from manufacturers and engineering companies because it is usually associated with branding in B2C marketing. If you Google brand awareness, it will return 14,700,000 results and the top hit is Wikipedia (no surprise there) which defines it as…

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Topics: Content marketing for engineers, Branding and awareness, content strategy, Content Promotion

Four Internet Mega-Trends that Matter to Engineering Marketers

Posted by John Hayes

Jun 7, 2017 3:30:53 PM

As marketers, we care about how engineers get information. We need to know whether they use email or Facebook, smartphones or laptops, so that we know where to put our messages and how to format them.

And here to the rescue, as she is every year, is Mary Meeker of Kleiner Perkins. Her latest Internet Trends report was published last week, all 355 pages of it.

In case you are wondering why we should pay attention, here are a few of her forecasts from 2010, seven years ago…

  1. Smartphone sales are growing so fast that they will soon become the primary way for many people to access the internet. (yup)
  2. Digital advertising expenditures will grow rapidly, mostly at the expense of print advertising (ditto)
  3. Digital advertising will be concentrated in Google, Yahoo and Facebook (got 2 out of 3 on that one. Sorry Yahoo.)
  4. Social networking will become a more powerful medium for sharing than email (remember your Dad’s email chains?)
  5. Cloud computing will be a big thing (also true)

If you are curious about how the 2017 mega-trends will impact engineering marketers, read on for my take.

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Topics: Content marketing for engineers, content strategy, Content Promotion, mobile marketing

More Content, but Lower Quality from Engineering Marketers

Posted by John Hayes

May 25, 2017 9:09:37 AM

Most engineering marketers are creating more content in 2017, according to our 2017 survey of engineering marketers research report.

All this rush to create content is, not surprisingly, leading to an abundance of poor quality content. This flood of content increases the competition for every post you publish, and the fight for each search term becomes more intense.

The response from some marketers and publishers is to write fewer, longer and more thoroughly researched pieces of content, ones that will be shared on social media, and that will rise to the top of search engines. If your approach is to write more short posts while your competition is writing longer and more detailed posts, you are unlikely to succeed.

As the chart above shows, the top-rated challenge for engineering content marketers is creating engaging content. This concern was also the top concern last year, with 50% of marketers citing it. However, in 2017 it was named a top concern by 62% of engineering marketers.

A related challenge was finding resources for creating content.

The struggle is real my friends. And it can lead to some disappointing short-term outcomes.

What does poor conversion content look like? And how can you avoid it?

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Topics: Content marketing for engineers, Branding and awareness, content strategy, content reach, Content Promotion

Marketing to Engineering Decision Makers – Dos and Don’ts

Posted by John Hayes

May 18, 2017 10:22:12 AM

Engineering marketers frequently say, “We need to reach decision makers with this campaign’” often because their sales teams tell them, “Whenever we get in front of a decision maker, we have a great shot at the sale, so let’s only talk to decision makers.”

As anyone who has run a campaign that targets decision makers knows, this is no easy road.  We recently surveyed over 100 Director and CXO level engineers about their information consumption habits. This research shows how you can reach those decision makers.

Take email, for example. Do you think they read it? Well, they do.

98% of engineering directors, VPs and C-level respondents say that they at least scan the subject line of every email they receive. 98%!  That’s huge. And 39% actually open most or all of the emails that you send. So that may leave you wondering why they don’t engage with your content and become active leads.

That has more to do with them than you.

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Topics: Content marketing for engineers, Branding and awareness, Email marketing to engineers, content strategy, content reach, Content Promotion

The Microsite - Is Your Content Creation a Home Run?

Posted by Roopinder Tara

May 5, 2017 10:36:51 AM

“Content is king” is commonly heard these days. Around ENGINEERING.com, we also like to say “content is a gift that keeps on giving.” Once you get good content published, it can live on its own and keep generating interest – and leads. This is in contrast to advertising, which when you shut off the tap, the leads dry up immediately.

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Topics: Content marketing for engineers, Branding and awareness, content reach

Engineers Hate Your Content Marketing

Posted by John Hayes

Apr 26, 2017 6:54:55 PM

In a survey of engineering marketers, 87% said that they were investing in content marketing. 

Unfortunately, that same survey revealed that creating engaging content for engineers was the biggest challenge.

Why do engineers hate your content marketing?  Well, it’s because marketers are the ones directing the content marketing show.  Simply put…

It’s not them. It’s you.

In this post, we’ll look at:

  1. Who engineers trust the most to give them product information
  2. What experts say about marketers creating marketing content
  3. One thing that you can do to deliver content that satisfies engineers.
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Topics: Social Media for Engineers, Content marketing for engineers, Branding and awareness, content reach, Analytics

Amplifying your Content Marketing with Employee Advocacy

Posted by John Hayes

Apr 19, 2017 4:30:28 PM

In 2017, virtually every engineering marketer has a content strategy. Many have learned from experience that creating content is only half the battle. The other half is getting that content in front of the right audience.

One potential game-changer for distributing your content is to leverage the social followers of your employees. This approach, called employee advocacy, is rapidly becoming an accepted practice that can dramatically increase how many people your brand stories will touch.

With social media so ingrained in everyone’s day-to-day it only makes sense that marketers are looking for ways to expand their social reach beyond just their own followers. One path forward is Employees who can have a remarkable multiplying effect on your distribution for two reasons:

  1. Employees are perceived as more authentic than your brand social channels, resulting in higher clicks and shares, and
  2. Your employees, when all added together, have a bigger reach than your brand channels.

So should you consider an employee advocacy platform?  To help answer that question I spoke to a representative of one such platform as well as a lead marketer from a major engineering software company. They helped me to understand how these systems work and what their benefits are for industrial marketers.  I found this topic incredibly interesting and I think you will too.

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Topics: Social Media for Engineers, Content marketing for engineers, Branding and awareness, content reach, Analytics