Why industry focused?

I sell temperature loggers. They are a product that is useful in many industries, but are virtually unknown in all of them. So it’s not like I have potential customers doing a search for “temperature loggers”.

Instead I need to get in front of my customers and show them the need and benefits of my product. So rather than focus on all my potential clients, I want to focus on a specific segment and get their attention.

And so I chose hospitality.

Shifting the focus

If I was to focus only on temperature loggers in hospitality my sales would be zero. Instead I needed to shift my focus to where my customers were more likely to be focusing. In my case the solution was “food safety”.

StayFocused

Step 1: Start with content

My first step was to create a new web site – foodandsafety.com.au. Unfortunately foodsafety.com.au was already taken so I had to compromise a bit. For Google the word “and” is meaningless and for users it is easy enough to slot in. Not perfect, but practical.

Then I employed a journalist graduate. My ad was for a journalist student but I was fortunate to find a first year graduate who wanted some extra spending money. I also employed an Australian and did not outsource it to the Philipines because I wanted good quality articles.

And then I had them write one article per day for a couple of months. There were a couple of goals:

(Content tip)

One article per day initially seemed daunting. The reality was quite simple – Google alerts did all the research for us. By monitoring some key words we were easily able to find at least one interesting story per day.

netvibes.com is also a great resource.

Step 2: Social media pages

My mistake was not to create a Facebook page immediately. Eventually I did (https://www.facebook.com/myfoodsafetyblog).

And Google Plus. And Twitter.

And then thanks to a great little WordPress plugin (XYZ Social Media Autopublish) the posts from my site are automatically posted on the Facebook page etc. Even better, it is possible to customise the Facebook page before it is uploaded.

Step 3: Industry focused social media advertising

My next step was to use Facebook advertising. I chose Facebook over Google Adwords because Adwords is good for reaching people who know what they want while Facebook is good for catching people with idle time and curiosity.

And at this stage there were two things we were trying to do:

  1. Attract traffic to our web site. Ultimately I need to start a subscription service and email out notifications of new stories. For now we have a pixel on the page for tracking visitors.
  2. Gain followers for our Facebook page. New blogs will be shown to a small percentage of them, and they are less expensive to market to.

Both are desirable and which one is better seems to be changing weekly.

In my next blog I will discuss the variour audience techniques I used.

The results so far

Within a month we had over 1,000 likes for the Facebook page. In one sense it is a bit of a con because you can just throw more money at Facebook to get more traffic and eventually people hit “like”. But I had a 4% success rate which is good and the cost was low. Also, a good article will be shared and that’s the organic growth that we are after.

Now we have a growing number of people seeing our articles. More importantly there are a significant number of chefs that are in the audience.

Lessons learnt

Blog + Facebook + Google+ +  Twitter

Any blog you write needs to go on Facebook immediately. It takes virtually no time but increases the coverage. The plugin actually supports Google Plus and Twitter so you can really get the message out there.

Promote sooner

Once the Facebook page has two screen’s worth of content, start promoting it. After all, who scrolls down to see what’s down there? If people aren’t interested in the first screen of content then they won’t be interested in anything.

Promote the gems

And when an awesome article is created, promote it to get maximum traction.