Your “Instruction Manual” for growing word-of-mouth marketing

Think of your customers’ journey like a television series, full of stories.

And, Stories = Content.

Content designed to entertain, inform, inspire, and pull them into your brand narrative.

It’s your job to give the series a grand finale and leave them wanting more.

How? By ending the series with a must-see episode… the Instruction Manual! And if you don’t think your instruction manuals are “content marketing” then you definitely need to keep reading…

Life’s too short for crappy instructions

Growing up, I knew someone who really didn’t like gifts that he had to assemble.

I remember one time, after spending hours putting together a home fitness machine he’d received for Christmas, he remarked that he didn’t want any more gifts that required assembly, ever again.

This particular device had a lot of parts and crappy instructions. Pretty sure I learned some new words that day.

Point is, his ownership experience sucked immediately.

How likely do you think he was to recommend that device to his friends?

Keep it simple, make it fun

how to use instruction manuals as content marketing

I just installed several Ring cameras and a doorbell, and it couldn’t have been simpler.

Not only is the entire process covered in an app that cycles through the steps (with video!), but there are illustrated paper instructions, too.

The Doorbell even comes with a really cool screwdriver, a masonry bit just in case, and multiple mounting plates to get the right angle. There’s even an extra cover in a different color.

From unboxing to installation to setup, my entire user experience was delightful.

Admittedly, I’m somewhat handy and often use home projects like this as procrastination techniques. But I also really, really hate poorly written instructions.


My Ring experience was awesome. Maybe now you’re considering it. Or at least it’s on your radar. The point is, I’m telling people how great it is.

If you want the same positive word of mouth, you can’t pull a Lost or Game of Thrones and ruin the whole experience right at the end. After all that hard work building up your customer relationship, you gonna ruin it with a lame ending?

Hell no!

Ring realized that their marketing continues after I get it home and use it, so they made the installation “content” as good as possible.

How to make better instruction manuals

Find a few people unfamiliar with your product to test drive your instruction manual. Watch where they stumble or have to ask questions. Trust me, YOU are far too familiar with your own product, so you’re glossing over details everyone else needs.

A great instruction manual will end it like Friends… satisfied, but still wanting more.

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