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Why Manufacturing Really Needs To Adopt Marketing
By: The Impals
It is this point where Manufacturing joins hands with the ubiquitous Marketing. Your manufacturing processes and products may be the top line but without the help of marketing, your products are as good as any other and you are as far any other from your potential customers. So, the very question arises: 'Does manufacturing need marketing?'
Decision on which marketing strategies to use starts with thinking like the customers who actually use your products or may use. You should learn end user's demographics, including their interests, the reasons why they buy their product and who is most likely to make purchase decisions. Share this valuable information with your resellers and distributors to give them the tools and motivation to sell. In addition, learn everything you can about what makes your resellers want to sell your product, as this gives you additional ways to encourage them to sell more.
Resellers and Distributors
Finding an outside dealer, agent or independent representative requires you to hold them accountable for reaching sales goals. Motivating your resellers to get out there and sell your product may require incentives for both them and their management team once sales goals are met. Once your product line is well established, look for a distributor to help you reach more resellers. Distributors represent a variety of products that they convince suppliers to buy, ideal if you're trying to break into larger markets or big box stores.
Buy advertising space in industry-specific magazines related to your products to attract resellers or distributors. If you sell directly to consumers, use your target market analysis to determine which publications your prospective buyer is most likely to read. Get word out about your products by renting a booth at industry tradeshows so resellers and distributors learn about your new product and want to represent it.
Having said this, it is also true that Manufacturers practicing these traditional marketing methods such as reseller channels, traditional print advertising, cold-calling, unsolicited email blasts, trade shows and so on should adopt new age marketing as much as it has embraced changes everywhere.
Content Marketing Is the Way Forward
Buyers of manufactured goods often start their search online, so you need to create content on your website that grabs their attention and makes them want to get in touch with you. The content you develop needs to be written to meet the needs of your potential customers, such as by mentioning how your products solve their problems or fit in with their existing operations. Describe the market for the product, including the demographics you researched, and explain why people want to buy the item. Include strong calls of action to get potential resellers or distributors to sign up for your email marketing list or to request more information about your products.
Companies and sales people these days are expected to have in depth knowledge about the needs of the customers, and approach the customers with information about the products and solutions targeted at the customers rather than just haranguing benefits of their products without assessing customer's exact requirement.
The consumers expect brands to be active on at least three to four social channels. While it can be overwhelming to manage an online presence the truth is, without a digital marketing strategy, customers will not find you. And if you don't tell them, potential customers won't know that you're the best company providing the best products and solutions.
Customer expectations have changed, so have the way they find you. By the time they find you, it's way too late to start educating them. If you have your inbound and digital marketing strategy right, you are way ahead in educating them correctly along the way and they will trust you and will be ready to walk the rest of the way with you. Your prospects and customers are looking for solutions to problems. You have the answers. You need to become their answer.
The overarching content marketing goal for your business is to help these prospects self-identify as your customer. It should also reaffirm brand loyalty from your present customers.
What most companies do not realize is that they have vast, completely untapped knowledge and resources that can provide a wealth helpful content.
You might have a corporate presentation on your website, a video or two, maybe a case study and a couple of white papers, but if your company doesn't have a robust content marketing strategy in place to track website visitors, keep customers delighted, and capture leads, where do you start? How do you bring it all together? You need to have a content marketing plan. This involves working out exactly what content you are going to create and when. For instance, you might commit to weekly blog posts and four eBooks a year. For more in-depth advice, why not read our post: How to come up with a winning content marketing plan.
The manufacturing sector is undergoing significant changes - including the way that manufacturing companies connect with their potential customers. Implementing content marketing is an important part of successfully navigating this new landscape. High-quality content provides prospective buyers with what they are seeking, bringing them closer to you - and closer to making a purchase.
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