As part of my presentation on how not to work with bloggers, I also talked about three kinds of things that bloggers would want to hear from you about. The most surprising thing to food and drink producers was that their processes, their day to day business, could be fascinating content to the right blogger, or your customers.
As I said on the day, looking behind the curtain has to be fascinating to some people, otherwise how do you account for the success of Gregg Wallace in factories on prime time TV? People outside your industry are likely to be endlessly curious about what you do. Here’s three things that you do, or about your business, that others might well find fascinating, that is the hidden content in your business.
Your production process
I remember the first time I saw pencils being made in a factory. I’d never thought about how the lead got into a pencil before. I found it amazing.
That video I linked to? Over 3 million views on YouTube. Just from what they do every day, in under two minutes. Okay, so this video was filmed by someone going into the factory. You don’t have to wait for that to happen, you can easily make, edit and launch your version (or hire someone to do the first two).
The tools to making some of these things happen are so much easier for small businesses to access now, compared to even ten years ago. If you don’t want to produce video, then good photographs and text can be just as compelling.
Take people through the keyhole of your business, and satisfy the curiosity they might not even know they had.
Your founder story
Amazon. Virgin. The Body Shop. There are probably a few more where you could tell someone else something about how those businesses got going.
How many of your customers could tell your story?
Now, if your story is dull, you’re going to have to work harder at, but usually there’s something that you can spin the story off from. And I don’t mean spin as in tell fibs. I mean that there will be a moment when you knew you absolutely had to do something, or that you were flat broke and miserable, or your parents told you to get a job, that just was the final catalyst. That’s a good, relatable starting point.
Some side reading and listening on this point
Two pointers from two fascinating brands.
If you listen to Holly Tucker’s podcast, Conversations of Inspiration (and I highly recommend you do), then have a listen to the episode with Fairfax Hall and Sam Galsworthy of Sipsmith Gin. Apologies to them that I can’t remember which one of them said it, but the point was that our goal shouldn’t be to find our unique point, but our distinctive one.
That’s really stuck with me. There are so few truly unique things. There are many distinctive ones.
And the other one is this post from the Paddy & Scott blog, sort of similar theme, around why your founder story may not be enough. So, if nothing else, don’t be dull and be distinctive.
The jobs your team do
Do you remember careers advice at school? Does it bear any relation to the job you do now? Or the jobs in your team?
No one mentioned pencil maker to me. Nor colour matcher for paint. Nor social media manager. Some of those are specialised, and some didn’t even exist. There’s probably a mix of both of those in your business.
Again, you can mix up words, video and photos, but many roles have things going on that most people never get to experience unless they do that job. This one can work for customers, and also as a recruitment tool.
You can make them serious, funny, tongue in cheek…whatever works for your overall brand. I mean, you probably don’t want a funny description of your surgeon’s skills, but if you’re the chief baker, tea maker or wine blender, then you’ve probably got more options.
My only ask would be, whichever route you go down, be human in the way you talk and present the roles.
Three lots of content that you could write a plan for this morning. No more specialist knowledge or research needed. This is about your business, and what happens behind the doors to your world. Trust me, someone, somewhere, will find what you do exciting. Your hidden content is much more valuable than you might think. Many people I spoke to on the day had never considered some of these things.
I’m going back to watching those pencils again. I might follow it up with swirled toothpaste manufacturing. What’s the best manufacturing line you’ve ever seen?