Despite legacy market barriers, we are seeing more and more interest in clean technologies across the globe. The growing interest in clean technologies is seen in many conversations across various channels, ranging from the value proposition of hydrogen fuel cell technology to solar energy applications.
As a cleantech company, how are you participating in these conversations?
Is your company utilizing these opportunities to showcase your thought leadership? But first, what is thought leadership and why is it so important within the cleantech industry?
Let’s dive into it now!
A Successful Case in Thought Leadership
Thought leadership is all about believing in something - irrespective of the current financial (or societal) implications because there is just a better way.
As Amazon founder and CEO, Jeff Bezos once said,
He saw something in 1994 that very few people did. He recognized that the future of commerce was going to be very different - it would be all about the customers. His humble beginning focused on a book e-retailing business. The network infrastructure and technologies to make it become a reality were yet to be developed. He burned a lot of cash along the way developing an unproven business model. Amazon has become the world's largest Internet sales online company, as well as the world's largest provider of cloud infrastructure services: Amazon Web Services - the technology behind the creation of Amazon.com.
This is truly a successful case of thought leadership. Bezos’ determination of putting the customers first has changed the way people buy things and revolutionized the e-commerce business model. In spite of the obstacles thrown in front of him along the way, his thought leadership in the e-retail industry has redefined the lives on our planet.
How can Clean Tech Companies adopt Thought Leadership?
Although Jeff Bezos’s story is an easy target to demonstrate innovative thinking, such evolutions are happening at an astounding pace in every market, at every opportunity.
One area where we are going to see a seismic shift is in the type of energy used to propel vehicles down streets and across nations. As the world raised many questions regarding the climate changes, we can all agree that the future solution of energy will no longer be a fossil fuel solution. Really, we are powering our world on dinosaur remains. That just doesn’t make sense, plus it is a truly limited resource.
Great clean technologies are being developed around the world to solve various issues, from climate change to limited resources. The people behind the technologies are truly thought leaders - whether they are market leaders recognizing changes or innovators developing new ideas that will revolutionize an industry category.
I can only imagine the discussions clean-tech innovators are having to challenge the inherent pushback that is built into established systems. To help these technologies get wider adoption, companies need to participate in important conversations that are happening at all levels. But how can cleantech companies do that?
This conversation can happen on many channels including social media, news/PR, outreach and influencers, but an effective and great starting point is right on your website. Build authority and voice on the subject, while bringing the industry audience to your site. Begin by building a thought-leading blog for your cleantech company.
3 Key Tips to Building a Thought Leading CleanTech Blog
Successful companies in the cleantech industry are participating in conversations through their blog. It’s a great channel to write about what people are searching for through Google. It’s also a sustainable platform that can help your company build web authority, thought leadership, and visibility across the digital world.
This blog can exist on your website in the format of a traditional blog, latest news or industry updates section. Whatever you chose to call, the purpose is to share relevant, and quality content that puts you in the forefront of the arena.
Now that you know how a blog can establish thought leadership, it’s time to start creating your blog content.
Here are three key tips to get you started:
1. Create blog content that addresses buyer persona’s problems/pain points
You want your company’s thought leadership efforts to be seen as value, rather than noise. The framework of every effort should be, "What do people need, and how am I delivering that to them?"
Ballard Power Systems is a great example of a company that has developed a thought leadership strategy and is seeing tremendous traction as a result of their consistent efforts in sharing their ideas and expertise through their blog.
Besides showing Ballard’s thought leadership in the clean energy industry, the blog content is able to address buyer persona’s problems.
How do they do that?
With doing extensive keyword research, the blog content was developed and optimized around keywords that Ballard’s buyer personas use to find the solution to their challenges.
The nice thing about building an optimized blog is that it is doggedly pragmatic. It builds authority by having the content indexed by search engines. Once your content gets indexed by Google, it will be there forever. It doesn’t disappear and it helps your website gain more authority over time.
Why is high website authority so important?
Once your website gained a higher authority, your company website will more likely be shown on SERP(Search Engine Result Page) when your buyer personas are searching for a solution that your company offers. Your blog post will show up to help them solve the problem. When you can solve their problem, they will remember your company.
2. Using marketing software to manage and monitor content efforts
Building an effective blog takes a lot of work and time. But don’t worry! We have a solution to help streamline your blog content creation process.
One particular marketing software that we use here at Red Rocket is HubSpot. The software assists in researching and planning content topics, managing blog content, and analyzing your blog data in one place. With a software like HubSpot, you are equipped with the essential tools you need to start building a blog for your company in one place.
(Learn more about HubSpot: Sales and Marketing Team - Be More Productive with HubSpot).
HubSpot is also a pioneer in developing the marketing solution which we have seen a significant success in the B2B space.
Having a content-rich blog is substantial for this methodology to work. You can easily repurpose your blog content into video, infographics, nurturing emails or social media posts that can then continue to drive the inbound marketing process.
But inbound isn't for everyone. Before you jump in and launch an inbound program, you need to determine if it's a good fit for your company.
3. Don’t forget about the importance of content distribution
There are many discussions happening in the cleantech space right now. More than ever - because it’s the right thing to do. If you have an idea, perhaps you need help amplifying your story. We know that there's no shortage of great ideas, the real challenge is getting the people to support them and get policymakers to embrace the positive change that benefits all of us.
So how can you amplify your story?
Now that you have a blog that has many great contents, it’s time to distribute them.
There are a few ways you can distribute your content.
- Share your content on your company’s social media channels.
- Share relevant blog content on Social Networks like Reddit and Quora to answer people’s questions.
- Join industry groups on Facebook or Slack to share your blog content, engage with group members to see what content they are interested to learn more.
A blog without distribution will not gain as significant traction as the one that does. So after you publish a blog post, don’t just stop there. Remember to share the content with the right audience on the right channels.
Most people still don’t quite have a grasp on how rapidly the clean technology sector is growing and how different the buying process has become. Today, 55% of buyers connect with vendors due to the vendor having posted valuable content online. In turn, marketing must also evolve along with it.
Many growing cleantech companies, like Ballard, have leveraged thought leadership on their blogs, resulting in an enormous increase in web traffic and social media visibility. Increase your brand's visibility, and position yourself as a leader in the industry by keeping our three key tips in mind and develop a content strategy for your cleantech blog.
To recap the information I went over:
- Showcase your thought leadership through a well-established company blog
- Optimized your blog so you can show up on SERP to address buyers’ pain points in time
- Utilize marketing software like HubSpot to help you build a blog with ease
- To build a successful blog, you can’t just stop after you hit publish, you should always distribute your content across relevant channels.
Principal & Marketing Strategist A results-driven creative thinker, Perry is a marketing management professional with a proven record of achievement in Strategic Planning, Team Leadership, and New Concepts Development.