Write what you know.  This common advice may have served you well in picking a topic for an essay for a creative writing class in high school or college.  However, the well-known axiom may prove to be lacking when a client calls on you to create quality content concerning a topic about which you know nothing. Ignorance may be bliss, but it is doubtful that it will draw in many readers.

 

Fortunately for you, the marketer needing to become an expert, a recent article by Lindsey Kirchoff for Hub Spot shares some ideas to help you quickly get up to speed in your area of need.  Kirchoff describes 10 steps to take you from novice to fluent in any industry.  Here are some of the highlights.

 

Learn the Language– Whatever your new industry is, it will likely have a unique way of communicating and carrying out its business, which you need to learn.  Subscribe to industry publications and follow influencers on social media.  Seek out opportunities to take classes from experts, and don’t hesitate to ask your questions.  You will increase your ability to communicate your client’s message as you gain insights into the industry’s jargon and rules.

 

Meet Your Neighbors– As your knowledge of the industry increases, take time to reach out to knowledgeable members of the community.  Whether you interact with people at industry conferences, online or otherwise, these relationships can be helpful in moving you from an introductory level to an intermediate level of fluency.  As you progress, be sure to share your new knowledge with these individuals as well.

 

Start the Conversation– Consider how your client fits into the landscape of the industry.  Who are their buyers?  What is their mission statement? Having established a good grasp of the language and solid relationships with the leading members of the community, you are prepared to begin telling your client’s story, highlighting the strengths that make their business unique in its space.

 

What experience have you had learning about a new industry?  Share your experience in a comment below.