Manufacturing is an umbrella term that includes businesses of a variety of industries from automotive to textile or food and drink. As surprising as it sounds, many manufacturing companies are still relying on traditional marketing efforts that include participating in trade shows, encouraging employees to generate leads through recommendations, and executing limited campaigns throughout the year. In 2020, when the dynamics of the world changed abruptly, companies relying on outbound marketing tactics had a difficult time as opposed to companies invested in inbound marketing. According to Hubspot, the switch from traditional marketing to inbound marketing can save businesses $20k annually on marketing investments. Here are our top tips for creating a digital marketing strategy for your manufacturing company that establishes reliability, trust, and brand identity for the long term.
Define Your Direction
Are you targeting B2B, B2C audiences, or both? This greatly impacts the direction and tone of voice that needs to be established across all of your marketing channels. This will also help you to narrow down your target audience in terms of who all of your content caters to from social media posts to paid advertisements. You don’t want to reach out to everyone and anyone until you have international recognition since this will only harm your budget and give you mixed results.
Digi-tip: Manufacturers often find that B2B marketing is easier to implement effectively than B2C which is why many opt to begin with B2B.
Creating a Marketing Plan for a Manufacturing Company
Well-executed marketing is all about dividing and conquering. There are various elements playing a role in your marketing plan: SEO, SMM, blogging, paid advertising, and more. All of these individually create their individual value for your company and tie it together. It’s up to you to develop a marketing plan for each of these components. Thinking of leaving one or the other out? Then consider these stats:
- From a poll of professional buyers, 57% said that omnichannel convenience was one of the top three improvements industrial distributors should provide.
- According to the 2020 Thomas Industrial Survey, manufacturer and industrial website use have increased by 12% since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The majority, 67%, of buy journeys take place online now.
- According to CEB, 57 percent of the buying decision process is completed before a customer even contacts a vendor. This means that before reaching out to you, potential clients are searching and evaluating you first.
- 53% of industrial buyers make purchases online according to a UPS Industrial Buying Dynamics Study.
The more channels of marketing you’re investing resources in, the more likely your manufacturing business will gain exposure online.
Choosing the Right Platforms
Digital marketing for manufacturers, like most industries, relies significantly on social media marketing now more than ever. A strong social media presence can make or break the bridge that connects your business to a steady stream of leads and traffic. It’s important to choose your channels of marketing wisely to determine where your efforts will go. Some businesses may opt to market their business across multiple social media while others decide to focus on one or two. This largely depends on your business direction as discussed above. For example, manufacturing companies with a B2C approach prefer social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest while B2B companies are more fond of directing their efforts to LinkedIn.
Content Marketing for Manufacturers
For the past couple of years, content generation has taken the marketing world by storm and shows no signs of stopping. Blogs, captions, images, videos, user-generated content, and anything else you can think of that falls under that category are assets for your brand. Content marketing is where you need to combine your creative and technical skills to create value for your business. Here are a few types of content marketing that manufacturers should invest time and resources in:
- Blogging ‒ A blog is an asset to any business small or large. Whether you’re writing posts about industry news, tips, and tutorials, including user-generated content and guest posts, you’re on the right track.
- SEO-friendly content ‒ on-site content marketing is intertwined with search engine optimization, which is why it’s crucial for you to optimize all of your content. This is especially the case for manufacturers who have an eCommerce website since the content is limited but the importance of it in terms of SEO remains immense.
- Video marketing ‒ “Marketers who incorporate video into their content strategies have seen 49% faster revenue growth than those who don’t” (HubSpot). Integration of video content in your marketing strategy is no longer a recommendation, it’s a must. You don’t need to record a full-length feature film to take advantage of video marketing ‒ short clips every now and then make all the difference.
Think of marketing as an investment and not a random expenditure. You can’t expect to put a couple of dollars into a PPC campaign or social media ads and notice exceptional results. You need room for flexibility to analyze and adapt changes according to what yields the most results. This doesn’t mean that spending hundreds of thousands on marketing will be effective unless you’re working tactfully. Make sure you work closely with paid ads specialists to determine how to allocate reasonable budgets for advertising to make the most out of your investment.
We hope this helps you in developing your next marketing plan for your manufacturing company and if you decide to opt for a web solutions agency to take on the task for you instead, Digilite is here to help.