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Idea: Where to Find the Missing Key That Unlocks Your Content Marketing Success

By Rex Hammock

Recently, the letter “R” on my laptop computer stopped working. As the letter is the first in my name and @R is my Twitter username, I fully expected—and sure enough received—a lot of (r)ibbing about the “damage to my ego key.”

What I didn’t expect was to discover that the only way to fix it, according the geniuses at the Apple store, would be a complete replacement of my keyboard. Parts and labor were going to cost around $350. Yikes!

As my heavy usage of laptops ages them in a timeframe equivalent to dog years (making it about 21 years old), I decided that $350 was “totaling” my computer. But before purchasing a new laptop, I wanted to see if there was a more affordable option to fix it. With the help of Hammock Tech Support, I not only found a new “R” key for just a few bucks, but I also discovered a great example of how a company—consumer or business-to-business, big or small—can use content to transform a commodity product into a premium one.

In the process, I also discovered one of the narrowest business niches imaginable: Companies that sell only laptop replacement keys. And yes, there are more than one. The one Hammock Tech Support chose, LapTopKeys.com, claims to have 6,244,200 keys in stock for 52,035 laptop models. Fortunately, they had the only one I cared about, and it only cost $7.88.

The key to marketing with content: Think like a customer.

I wasn’t a potential customer of LapTopKey.com because I wanted to purchase a key. I was a potential customer because I wanted a computer that allows me to write using wo_ds that contain the lette_ “_.”

How did LapTopKey.com use content to address my need in a way that raised their keys above a commodity? No, it wasn’t tweets, likes or even blog posts. Starting several years ago, the company started creating an extensive library of YouTube videos that provide step-by-step instructions on how to replace any type of laptop key on any brand of computer.

As YouTube has become the world’s go-to source for learning how to do just about anything, tutorials on LapTopKey.com’s YouTube Channel receive a steady flow of traffic (over a million views) to its no-frills videos.

After watching a couple of these videos, Hammock Tech Support and I decided, “It’s cheap and it looks like we can do it ourselves.”

Did it work? Well, I’ve just written this Idea Email using it.

Lesson for marketers: The most valuable and important content is that which is the closest to fulfilling the need customers have at the moment they reach out to you. Yes, content is great for establishing thought leadership, encouraging user engagement, and growing social media likes and follows. But also remember that content is something that, when used effectively, adds value to your product and raises it above a commodity. (Or, as we’ve said many times: “Don’t sell pots and pans. Teach your customers how to be better cooks.”)


Photo: LapTopKeys.com