By Chris Mott
By Chris Mott
Manufacturing marketing strategy previously consisted of a similar strategy to many other industries; however, the route of cold calling, door-to-door sales pitches, and shaking hands have closed. The Mad Men have been repaced by the tech guys, and your company has likely felt the weight of these changes. You may even be one of the many manufacturers that is struggling to keep up. How can you successfully change your marketing strategy? The answer is as simple as going to your tool box.
For far too long, product marketing has been, as one expert puts it, interruption based. Consumers have grown weary of being bombarded with telemarketing tactics, infomercials, and print ads. Plenty of information is provided at every turn, but businesses jump the gun by forcing goods and services on a world that has turned a deaf ear to what they now consider harrassment.
The door-to-door salesman stereotypes exist for a reason. Far too many have experienced a less than pleasant interaction from a man or woman ringing their doorbell at the exact moment that family dinner is starting. Some even persist when told to go away. It’s time to retire this mindset when approaching your marketing strategy. Put down the hammer – it’s only pushing wounded consumers away.
Particularly for manufacturers, this can be a hard notion to overcome as many factories — marketing teams included — have operated with this sort of push system for many years. You have a great product, so the urge to communicate that is natural and good. However, barreling to and through the offices of potential leads doesn’t garner the results it once did.
So, how do you create an effective manufacturing marketing strategy? Make it attractional. Rather than casting a wide net and hoping interested parties are listening, craft a strategy that focuses its efforts on reaching targeted groups or types of customers.
Once you have a specific target audience, you can begin the process of drawing them in (hence, being a magnet). How will this happen? By strengthening the pull of your magnet through dynamic, engaging content creation. Who makes up your current customer base? Where do most of your current leads come from? What do they want to hear? This is perhaps the biggest difference in the effective inbound marketing of today versus the outbound method of the past.
Your strategy must take on a customer — not product — focus. By creating content in the form of engaging landing page copy, branding that catches the right eyes, and downloadable offers that are exactly what your ideal customers are looking for, you can position your company as an expert. This won’t be solely because of your product, but because you’re willing to go the extra mile to help people who need to solve real problems.
You don’t want to just be right, but trusted as an industry leader. The more frequently you produce this content, the more traffic your site will generate. Your audience will realize that they can indeed find what they’re looking for from you, and ideally return again and again.
There are many nuts and bolts to such a strategy, including a website that invites people to use it. There are many ways that this can look, but the important thing to remember is that the perception of the manufacturing world is that it’s out of touch with the everyday consumer. Prove them wrong.
As you begin to craft a manufacturing marketing strategy that engages those in need of your services, each piece of that strategy must be fully operational. If one link in the chain is missing, your machine won’t run properly and produce the desired outcome.
Engage your audience with exemplary branding and video that helps capture your company’s unique history, product, and mission. Interact with your audience by asking them for information. This happens naturally through the use of contact forms that will capture critical information from website visitors as they explore your site and download the guides, whitepapers, and other helpful resources you produce. Consumers will have no problem trusting you with their information if they can trust you with providing information they find valuable.
If you want to get found online through the vast array of search engines out there, you also have to present yourself as a company who is alive. This means frequently contributing to your website through things like blogging. As your audience realizes that you are a living, breathing, thought leader providing useful and relevant content, they will come.
Don’t underestimate the huge benefit of listeninng to your target audience. The things that resonate with them should cause you to make changes to your marketing strategy and website content that will pull them towards you. When they visit your website, they should encounter a wealth of information that will help them, convert them into leads, close them as customers, and delight them as promoters of your product and brand.
You have the tools — now get to work!
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