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It doesn't matter how niche your industry is, it's still competitive. You know who your competitors are, and they know you. They come up in the conversations your sales reps have with your prospects, and you pop up in theirs.

However, a strong content marketing strategy can insert you into a prospect's thought process sooner, and can give you a leg up on the competition. Here are three quotes from Inbound Marketing Summit speakers that can help you zero in on a strategy for creating content that will thoroughly captivate your prospects and explain your products.

“Simple and to the point is always the best way to get your point across.”

- Guy Kawasaki

If you've ever read one of Guy's books, seen a Steve Jobs presentation, or watched an Apple ad, you know Guy's quote must have had close to mantra-status out in Cupertino. Adopting this adage for yourself will enable you to do two things:

  1. Create more content (simple and to the point is easier than in-depth and highly complicated) 
  2. Use that content as a jumping-off point to deeper conversations with your prospects. 
Simple, to the point blog articles and webinar topics will grease the skids for prospect follow up and questions that segue into capabilities for your sales team.

"The first problem of communication is getting people's attention."

- Dan Heath

Isn't that the truth, Dan? The secret to content marketing is creating remarkable content that gets read, gets liked, and gets shared. For these things to happen, and for you to get noticed in a meaningful way, your content has to be different than other resources out there on the topic. Before diving into creating criteria that your content has to meet, do some research on what you want to avoid. Look at what your competitors have. Steer away from their formats and schedules. Do the opposite. Be better.

"Why spend time, money, and creative effort making fake, glossy, slick pieces of marketing material when something honest and informative (and ENTERTAINING!) would likely do a better job?"

- Chris Brogan

One of the easiest ways to get noticed is by entertaining your visitors with your content. Easier said than done, right? This doesn't have to be as hard as it sounds. Brainstorm some analogies that you think make sense for you industry. Do this regularly with your content team. Make videos of your product in action. Have folks keep diaries. Do interviews. Break from the traditional molds of one-dimensional, descriptive information - and give prospects and customers a look into the heads of those building and marketing your brand. They will appreciate the view. 

Want more great insight and advice from the leaders in Inbound Marketing? Register to attend Inbound Marketing Summit Boston, September 14-15.

Originally published Aug 19, 2011 3:16:00 PM, updated January 28 2014