Over the past few months our blog’s focus has been on the benefits of telling your business story, blogging and content marketing as a lead generator. We noticed that many of the clients we work with are concerned about sharing too much. Whether you call it ‘sharing the secret sauce’ or ‘giving away the farm’ folks seem hesitant to go deeper into valuable subject matter. So we developed a couple of questions to help you determine just how much to share.
Is the information truly proprietary?
Try this simple test: consider whether the information you are sharing could truly be called proprietary or different enough that it would hold up in a legal intellectual property challenge. Be careful not to confuse ‘proprietary’ with how you chose to do things. It’s often the process of how you do business that is different than the actual product or service itself. Exceptions would be in the technology development, defense, and pharma industries where information security is an ultimate priority. And of course, the recipe for Coca-Cola.
How could my competition use this information?
It’s highly likely that your competition is paying attention to everything you post online. And if that’s the case, take it as a compliment that you are doing something right and they consider your company a viable competitor. First, consider whether the information you are sharing is something they already know. It’s likely that your competitors already have or could gain that knowledge from a number of sources. Second, if you share the information will they be able to use it in a way that impacts your business. Knowing how you do what you do is one thing. Successfully replicating what you do is another story entirely.
Have we given away everything?
Believe it or not, the goal of content marketing is to give away everything you can. As Jay Baer states in his article on this topic:
The goal of content marketing is to give away everything you know, but to do so one piece at a time. Provide free information snacks that create interest in your knowledge meals.
The name of the content marketing game is value. Provide value, expert insights and information that readers will be hard pressed to get anywhere else. And to provide this level of value you will need to go deeper into your subject matter.
What may have felt like a risk only a few years ago has now become standard procedure when it comes to sharing information about your business and process. We know. We help our clients with content marketing strategy and implementation. Let us help you make your competition sit up and take notice.