While most marketers know marketing, they may not always know the intricacies of a technical industry. But in their marketing role, they’re often expected to. Whether in-house or in a third-party agency setting, every company comes with particular topics and industry challenges that can test the limits of a marketer’s ability to develop knowledge. If you’re having a hard time understanding the problems of your company or client companies, here are a few tips to keep your industry knowledge up to par.
Learn the Lingo
Technical industries are full of acronyms, abbreviations and emerging technologies that can stump anyone not familiar with the lingo. Any marketing content, blog or otherwise, has to be able to communicate the message effectively, and that means at least knowing how to talk the talk.
Roll with the Industry’s Punches
Unlike some other industries, technical industries are constantly evolving both commercially and technologically, and marketers must take extra care whenever they are planning their next steps. Pain points that existed just a month ago may have already been solved by an emerging business or service. Leads gained yesterday may already be useless when the emails go out the next day. In other words, change comes fast, and marketers who can’t think on their feet and evolve with a rapidly shifting industry will find much of their efforts wasted as they pursue tactics that won’t have the same effect tomorrow as they did yesterday.
Keep in Touch with Your Audience
Marketing is a highly empathetic discipline. The farther away a marketer is from his or her audience, the more difficult his or her job will be. Highly technical industries often employ highly analytical people who think differently than an average consumer. While marketing can be an exceptionally technical field, not every brand specialist or content developer is adept at connecting with that type of audience, and individuals in charge of marketing for such an industry may face extra challenges.
Elect an Industry Expert
While every member of your marketing team needs to know the industry well, appointing one individual to become the team expert will definitely save a lot time for the team as a whole. This specific industry expert should collaborate frequently with the technical resources such as sales engineers and product development and, by doing so, can advise other marketers on the team when questions arise or help with fact-checking if the initial meaning of a content piece gets warped in the approval process. By the time the content reaches the audience, it should be an informative, engaging industry piece.
Getting acclimated to an industry takes time, and most companies will realize that there will be some mild industry misunderstandings when marketers are involved. To eliminate these knowledge gaps before any major mistakes are made, marketers should constantly be researching the industry he or she works in and staying up on news, headlines and innovations.