The web isn’t about slews of datasheets and technical specifications anymore- it’s about telling stories and converting and winning opportunities with new clients. If you have blogging capability on your website- use it to tell a story! You don’t need to focus on social media, just write some very specific articles.
Many engineering firms that are run by engineers however hear this and scoff, with two likely reasons:
- The Good Old Boy Network – “Everything in our industry is word of mouth”
- Effervescent Knowledge – “The marketplace already knows who we are”
I kind of find these solutions silly for any number of reasons.. In Contrast I present to you my idea list of what engineering focused companies can write about in their blogs- with special attention placed on the fears of the industry.
Engineering Blog Post Idea #1 -Recent Project Requirements or Quotations
A engineering project proposal already written by your staff is a well thought out plan that focuses on the needs of a specific customer and can make an excellent engineering blog post. Could this type of document be the basis for a blog post? Absolutely. Would you include the name and address of your prospective client, and include a price? Of course not!
For turning a project proposal into a blog post, I suggest
- Removing all specifics about a client, especially about their proprietary technology
- Properly formatting the document to include specific headers about components of the project
- Removing all costs, delivery schedules, and personnel names.
- Making sure the Heading and flow of the docuement include references to the problem being solved
- Get your boss to allow AS MUCH of your solution as possible- to show your ability- remember- a couple sentences is not a solution, just an idea- that YOUR company can integrate, and a competitor’s MIGHT be able to.
A Note about competition: ‘What about when our competitors start visiting our blog and stealing our ideas?” Is a question you will receive from the owner’s of your company. Well, let me say- when was the last time you did the same thing with your competition? The benefits out weigh the risks- and follow the same reasoning around “our competition will just click on our AdWord ads and cost us money”.
Engineering Blog Post Idea #2 – Engineer History
An easy blog post for your engineering firm that can be done quickly, and at at any time, is that of an engineer’s career, with a focus on projects performed by said engineer.
An in person interview with an engineer at the side of his desk asking him or her about his or her favorite project can result in mounds of content that is freely available. What better way to make an engineer product and feel good than by writing an article about a past accomplishment ( while of course, removing client specifics as necessary). This method is a sure fire way to get an engineer to talk about a problem, and a solution offered. Not only is this content, but highly attractive to your specific engineer who may share his story with friends and colleagues. Chances are that a problem your engineer has completed in the past would be a prime example of a project you would like to have in the future.
Engineering Blog Post Idea #3 – Product Integration
Engineers glue things together. They glue technologies together in different ways to return wonderful results. What about focusing on the effort involved with connecting technology or component A to technology or component B? or Technology C to your Proprietary Platform?
- Talk about precision of a measurement tool and how accurate you needed it to be
- Talk about the number of supports required to hold up the large product near its point of operation
- Talk about why you chose a specific item for a client’s problem
- Talk about your love or hate for a specific item
- Talk about why you chose tool A over tool B for a specific client
- Write a product review
Engineering Blog Post Idea #4 – Customer Feedback
Ouch this one is tough! But it IS doable. Often times your client will cringe at the fact that any firm wants to talk about how well a client likes a custom solution that meets their specific needs – it is going to involve legal and that just sounds like hell. If they don’t go with submitting anything anonymously, pull this marketing trick – go through their web marketing team. Suggest that you can provide them a link to their website in exchange for a small endorsement. Not only will the web marketing team love to have a new INCOMING link to their website- they will all of a sudden be on your team in pushing for getting permission to you!
Engineering Blog Post Idea #5 – Tool Development
In all likelihood, your staff has a tool box from which solutions are pulled. What a treasure trove!!
- How did this toolbox get created?
- Who did it?
- Why does it exist?
- What problems does it solve?
- What parts of it change on a daily basis?
This is an easy blog post that touts your abilities, your history, and your target client’s specific needs.
Engineering Blog Post Idea #6 – Your Problem Solving Process
Take a simple problem that you see in your industry over and over and over again, that you and your competitors solve in very simple ways everyday.
Write out a detailed solution for that problem. Make it so completely detailed that anyone googling for the solution will have to find you and salivate at the plan you have offered. If they find you, and discover your solution and steal it- oh well, you’ve probably lost nothing. If they find you and realize that they don’t have the in house expertise or the man power to enact the solution- then boom, you are on your way to a new client.
Engineering Blog Post Idea #7- Translate Existing Publications
My first attempt in 2008 to write for an engineering company was through the repurposing of existing content. The owner of the company had written a chapter in a well known industry publication that discussed the many difficulties around a specific plastic extrusion process. I broke the chapter out into 10 different sections, and rewrote each section into a blog post. After all of the articles were published- it was determined that 30% of the website’s traffic was from those 10 articles. Not a bad increase for 2 full days of work in rewriting.
Engineering Blog Post Idea #8 – Translate Existing Datasheets
Depending on the kind of white papers and datasheets already in the files of your marketing team and senior staff, there are always opportunities to rewrite portions of those articles from a the perspective of the problem being solved- providing all sorts of bait for customers that need that kind of information.
Engineering Blog Post Idea #9 – The List
I can’t write this idea any better way than to write out examples of blog post article headlines for your engineering blog.
- 7 Warning Signs that your Mother could work faster than your Current Automation Tools
- 5 Little known Facts about Semiconductor Wafer Slicing
- Get Rid of the Buzz in your Extruder Controller in 3 easy steps
- 11 Wasteful Mistakes that your Shop Floor Team is Making Everyday with their HMIs
- 7 Secrets Every Municipal Power Company Executive Must Know to Increase Efficiency
- 14 Killer Resources for Planning your next Facility Expansion Project
Writing is not for everybody. With a Electrical Engineering Education and a focus on Internet Marketing- the Remarkable Team is happy to conduct research with your team in person or over the phone and write blog post drafts that are all but guaranteed to win you new business.