Many professional services firms today are tightening their marketing focus these days, sometimes to developing and building relationships with certain specific target companies -- the “key client” strategy. Marketers are under pressure to do their part in building and retaining their firm’s relationship with these clients.
From a content marketing perspective, that means developing content that’s of value to those key clients, and then getting that information in front of them, to demonstrate that the firm can produce relevant ideas and results. Content on your firm’s website and in your own media such as blogs and newsletters can help with this. But it’s also vital that the firm get its ideas published in media that are already known to, and trusted by, people within those key clients.
This content can include:
- Guest posts on blogs that are read by the key clients
- Articles in their business and professional magazines
- Content posted in their LinkedIn groups
- Having their tweets retweeted by the people that they follow
- Content posted on the websites of their industry and professional publications
Are you using all four facets of your key clients’ perspectives?
Every client is really four people, in a way -- which allows you to reach them through four kinds of media.
To see how this works, let’s say your firm focuses on the problems involved in buying former industrial properties, where the soil may have been contaminated by fuel oil, lubricants or other chemicals that leaked into the soil. Called “brownfields,” these impacted properties must be remediated to meet regulatory standards. You want to reach property developers with the message that your firm can reliably clean up problems at disused factories, such as the one in the picture above -- a former fiberglass factory in Amsterdam NY.
1. Industrial media
Some specialized media are “industrial” in their orientation, reaching a specific industrial sector such as construction, manufacturing, chemicals and oil refining. You can present these media with information on trends in contaminated site remediation -- maybe pointing out how faster and cost-efficient the new technologies can allow for shorter construction schedules.
You’ll need to tailor your message to the needs of the specific industry -- a publication for the retail sector, for example, might be interested in contaminants that can come from retail properties, including dry-cleaning shops, where fluids may have leaked into the soil under the establishment.
2. Professional or occupational media
Some publications focus on a specific profession such as law, accounting or engineering. If you develop an article for a legal publication, you’ll need to describe the legal liabilities involved in owning contaminated property, and how to manage those legal risks. If you want to reach the financial people within property development companies, focus your content on ways to improve the financial value of brownfields.
3. Geographic media
Some media focus on specific cities, regions or countries. To reach these geographic areas, look for ways to discuss what’s exclusive to those areas, such as a high water table, or geology that allows contaminants to be spread off the property line due to fractures in the bedrock. Perhaps there are local government incentives to promote the remediation of brownfield properties, so that they can be developed, and your article could discuss those incentives.
4. Issue- or cause-related media
Lastly, there are publications that focus on a certain issue or cause -- for example, I’ve helped my clients publish articles in “ReNew Canada,” a magazine focused on infrastructure renewal, as well as “cityminded.org,” an online publication addressing the issues of inner-city development.
It’s important in each case to understand the publication’s orientation, so that you can develop content that is relevant to those readers. This means convincing the editor or manager that you can produce content with those readers in mind. Can one person be interested in all four kinds of media? Certainly. Imagine a lawyer who works in property development in New England, with a company focusing on high-rise infill development. If you have a key client that fits those criteria, you can reach that client through all four of those media types.