Marketing for the semiconductor industry is often a nice-to-have rather than a strategic focus — is that true for your company? When done properly, content marketing in particular can be a somewhat “set it and forget it” source of qualified leads. Yes, there’s always a need to generate new content to keep the pipeline flowing, but pieces written long ago can perform well and generate tons of new activity for months or even years, with very little effort needed to keep it going.
What is Content Marketing, and Why Should You Care?
Content marketing is a strategy of creating and sharing educational content that your target audience (likely applications engineers and their leadership) will use to help them as they perform early research on solutions for their product development challenges.
When done well, content marketing positions you as a thought leader in your space rather than a sales machine trying to force your product on engineers. It creates trust in your expertise and brand. And when combined with a gating strategy (the practice of collecting contact info via a form in exchange for content such as a technical paper) it can generate lots of leads for your sales team to nurture.
Why does it work so well in a highly technical space? Because your challenge is getting your product or technology onto the radar of applications engineers early in their product’s development cycle, so you don’t miss the design-in window. That means that engineers need to be thinking about your brand during their initial research, long before they’re ready to start a sales conversation. Content marketing is how you fill that gap, becoming their expert resource and trusted partner before they’ve sourced all of their components and technologies.
Generating Content Isn’t as Hard as it Sounds
I can guess your reaction right now: we don’t have time to write a bunch of papers and other content pieces. If we did, we’d be doing marketing already and wouldn’t need to read this!
But if you are reading this, then you’re looking for a way to generate more leads. And content marketing is actually not that hard to do. You already have a whole team of brilliant experts (your engineers) generating all types of content that just needs to be mined, polished and promoted. Where can you find sources of content just waiting to be culled?
- Application notes
- Event presentations
- Answers to common customer questions
- Answers to common service questions
- Sales decks & product sheets
Why Should I Invest in This?
The short answer: it works. We’ve seen it work in real-life scenarios with manufacturers serving this industry. What kinds of results prove that this approach is worth your effort? With some clients, we’ve seen:
- 607% growth in blog views over a few months’ time, increasing overall organic traffic to the site significantly
- 325% increase in net new leads generated by gated, downloadable content
- 175% increase in sales qualified leads, the lead stage just before an opportunity is opened
- A pillar page that became the 4th highest-viewed page on a site within 4 months of publication
What Kind of Content Should I Create?
Good content is designed to follow the stages that a buyer goes through when they are considering a purchase: Awareness, Consideration and Decision. Different types of content work well at different stages, because they answer different buyer concerns and questions. While any content type can really fit into any stage depending on the story it tells, these types commonly fit into these categories:
- Awareness: someone is just starting to investigate a challenge they’ve identified
- Blog posts
- Application notes
- All of this content should include a conversion point, such as a form to learn more or download related content
- Consideration: at this stage, the person is starting to research possible solutions for their challenge
- White papers
- Technical papers
- Use cases
- Tech briefs
- Decision: by now, the person is evaluating vendors that offer the solution they want, trying to assess which is the best fit — and offers proof of their success
- Data & spec sheets
- Product overviews
- Case studies & testimonials
- Company one-sheeters/brochures
How Do I Get Started?
Is this starting to sound interesting? If so, I recommend downloading our content marketing checklist to get a sense of where you stand today.
If you have concerns about getting it all done, I recommend working with an agency partner that is experienced in writing marketing content for engineers in the semiconductor industry. The right agency will understand how to draw a sales story from your engineering team’s deep well of technical knowledge and leverage content marketing tactics to drive leads.
AAC can be that agency for you. If you’d like to discuss more, contact us.