The collapse of oil prices in 2014 caught many by surprise. As a result, nearly $400bn of spending on new oil and gas projects has been put on hold or scrapped. This staggering cut in spending sent companies into a tailspin. As manufacturers and suppliers of oil and gas equipment look for ways to cut costs to combat the collapse in oil prices, the integration of a content marketing strategy is just one money-saving measure being considered.
Why Industrial Content Marketing is Important?
The project-centric nature of the Oil and Gas industry is characterized by long and complex sales cycles. Buyers are in self-serve mode and invisible to your sales team during a large portion of these cycles.
With a very limited number of new projects in the market, manufacturers may also find themselves in a situation which requires them to focus on serving existing operations and maintenance and which mandates a painful restructuring of their sales and marketing activities to serve this new priority. The characteristics of this new mode of operation requires agility and better coverage to address smaller scattered opportunities which puts pressure on marketing budgets.
Industrial Content Marketing is critical for continuous exposure in order to fill visibility gaps during long sales processes and strategic restructuring. That's why, more than ever, Oil & Gas equipment manufacturers need to engage their existing and potential customers continuously through complementing their conventional marketing efforts with digital content marketing. This strategy becomes even more critical during economic downturns for customer acquisition and retention.
Many companies utilise an economic downturn to their advantage by trimming trade show budgets and optimizing the utilisation of their advertising dollars to gain continuous online presence. Investing in content marketing when there is a downturn in the industry is a great way to maintain or even grow your business at a low cost. There are lots of ways to implement this concept, one of them is to combine content marketing with trade shows.
Leveraging Content Marketing Efforts Alongside Big Events
Industrial content marketing alone may not be enough to drive industrial sales. In many cases, It can be used to complement conventional marketing efforts such as trade shows and other offline activities.
The Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) indicates that 86% of companies go to trade shows to generate leads. Yet, this same research found that 79% of leads are not followed up mainly because the information obtained was inadequate. The show management can get people to attend the event but is not able to get the best prospects for the exhibitor booth. If the exhibitor just waits for them to walk by randomly, they'll likely miss more than one major business opportunity.
Studies also show that targeted pre-show campaign raises the exhibitors “attraction efficiency” — the quality of the audience they attracted to their booths — by 46%. Similarly, the conversion of booth visitors to qualified leads rose 50% when a targeted pre-show promotion was used.
The Bridge Marketing Approach
If you do not have a content marketing strategy integrated to your marketing mix, your promotion efforts risk drowning in the flood of marketing messages spread by your competitors.
Industrial online portals allow immediate connection with a large targeted audience. By doing so, big events are able to tap into an already active business community. By taking advantage of a continuous content stream, the message that events are attempting to deliver is accessible by an audience that may not have been exposed to it before.
Industrial buyers are increasingly turning to the Internet when conducting searches for products and services. The “Bridge Marketing” methodology illustrated in the graph, describes how continuous marketing, using virtual online catalogs in industrial portals among other tools, can be integrated to support conventional marketing efforts during trade shows. This integration maximizes reach throughout the year and provides a smart way to blend the Face-to-Face marketing experience with a Virtual Experience.
Smart trade show exhibitors are harnessing new content marketing technologies to blend the Face-to-Face marketing experience with a Virtual Experience. By adding a digital companion to the offline trade show, the pre-show promotion program produces an important impact on the ground: suppliers are able to recruit additional quality buyers, optimize face-to-face interactions, and increase the period of lead engagement.
For more information about Industrial Content Marketing Solutions and Leveraging Content Marketing Efforts Alongside Big Events, please click here to download the brochure