All companies need a marketing plan, even companies selling commodities like natural gas. Regardless of your market or range of services, there are dozens of other companies—both local and global—competing for your customers. A marketing plan will not only strengthen loyalty among existing customers, but also increase your reach and interest among new prospects.
The Internet has opened up several new channels your company can use to reach your audience and build your brand identity. The challenge is just knowing how to use these channels properly. Keep reading to find out how to create an effective multichannel marketing strategy for your natural gas company. If you’d rather speak with a specialist about using digital marketing, you can reach us at 888-601-5359 or contact us online.
How to market a natural gas company
You have many options when deciding how to market your natural gas company. But we’ve found that these 6 strategies work the best.
1. Create a unique brand
Since you operate in a commodity business, there has to be a compelling reason to work with your company. Gas is available from hundreds of suppliers—why should consumers and businesses buy from you? A unique brand position will give them a better understanding of your company and what it can offer.
What is a brand, exactly? It’s a set of tangible and intangible qualities that differentiate one company from another. For many people, this means a tagline, logo, and color scheme. However, a brand is also defined by other things, such as personality or tone of voice, story, associations, and value proposition.
All of these things come together to create your brand. When this brand is unique and distinct from your competitors, you create a tremendous advantage in the marketplace. Once you define your brand, though, it needs to be delivered consistently through a variety of communications and channels.
2. Develop an informative website
Where is the first place people go when they want to learn more about an organization? In today’s Internet-driven world, it’s their website. A company’s website is the central element of their online presence, and should provide an introduction, a menu of products and services, a company directory, and a communication channel. Build a site that does all of these things, and you’ll have a strong foundation for your entire marketing strategy.
Include an “About Us” page on your site that provides an overview or history of your company. Include detail about your services and capabilities, as well as details on recent projects and the geographic regions where you operate. Don’t forget a “Contact Us” page, with addresses and phone numbers for each location and email addresses for customer support and other frequently contacted departments.
3. Produce original content
While traditional advertising methods (like radio, TV, and print ads) can still generate sales, these approaches tend to focus more on telling prospects how great your company is rather than showing them. By contrast, blogs, guides and other high-quality content demonstrate your knowledge in a concrete way—which is much more convincing.
Some of this content can be on your website, like blog posts, articles, and infographics. Other content can be produced for other sites, including industry publications and news sites. No matter the format or topic, make sure it includes research from credible sources, links to your site, and branding elements that will not only make your content unique, but also reinforce your position as a thought leader on the subject.
4. Stay active on social media
People use social media to stay connected to friends and family, to stay informed on current events and topics of interest, to share their opinions, and to get advice and recommendations from others. And today, they also use it to assess and engage with brands and businesses.
Depending on your marketing goals, some channels will be more effective than others.
- LinkedIn is the best channel for reaching B2B audiences, either to demonstrate your expertise or to reach key influencers by publishing content and participating in discussions.
- Twitter is a good place to share industry news as well as stories that specifically involve your company.
- Facebook and YouTube are effective channels for reinforcing your brand, sharing video content, and supplementing your PR strategy.
Whatever your marketing goals, social media can help you achieve them. However, it’s important that if you launch a social media marketing strategy, you have someone responsible for monitoring your accounts and responding to comments and responses. Even with the best strategy, you always run the risk of negative comments from unhappy users.
5. Target local audiences
Every region has its own supply challenges and regulations that impact the distribution of gas. As a result, even global gas companies have to target their messages to smaller markets. So will you if you want to gain a competitive edge in multiple markets.
Craft your value proposition to the needs of each particular market. Research the energy needs of each region you serve, including demographics, consumer or commercial needs, and the services provided by other companies. When your marketing strategy is tailored to a specific region, communications sound less generic—and more attractive to local residents and businesses.
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Want to improve your natural gas company’s marketing strategy?
The market for gas is growing, but so are the companies ready and able to meet the demand. But with a solid marketing strategy, you can create a unique identity for your company and continue to reach new customers.
If you’d like to grow your company’s reach and revenue, WebFX can help. We have years of experience creating comprehensive marketing strategies for our clients, and we can do the same for you. For more information, don’t hesitate to contact us! One of our strategists will be more than happy to discuss how our team can assist you in growing your business online.