Online marketing isn’t a magical solution that instantly generates revenue or boosts sales 100 per cent — but it is a valuable tool and untapped resource manufacturing clients miss out on. It’s a new way of thinking and a new way of doing business, and it can seem like a lot of work to implement. But there is value, both in product sales and brand awareness that pay off for companies that embrace it as part of the marketing and sales package.
So why aren’t manufacturing companies on board with online marketing? We’ve seen some patterns emerge in the last year or two that may seem familiar to you.
Newspaper ads, trade shows, even websites might not be reaching your audience — or, they may not be reaching as broad an audience as they could be. More traditional channels (aside from websites) don’t reach beyond the physical borders of that event or area of business you may primarily operate in. Online marketing opens up brands to new areas where perhaps it isn’t feasible to have a rep on the ground.
Word of mouth—the primary method for building networks and reputations—is losing effectiveness. It often takes many years to develop a solid reputation, and even then a reputation usually has limited geographic reach. Yet, online marketing propels word of mouth quickly and across vast distances. It’s a shift in the way we communicate brand identity.
Many manufacturing companies think online marketing consists of a website and a Twitter account and are surprised when these two things don’t improve their business. But there is more to online marketing than these two key pieces. To collect quality leads online, the following components of an online marketing strategy require time, energy and money to ensure active and consistent involvement:
Online marketing is less expensive and more profitable than most other channels. As online lead acquisition rises, so does profitability. Online lead generation can have a 62% cost advantage compared to other traditional marketing approaches.
While lifestyle and far reaching product brands have been quick to embrace online marketing, we’ve found that architecture, engineering, construction and manufacturing firms, which have a much more refined and targeted audience struggle to find a place for themselves online. But this suggests a narrow view of what online marketing really is. Email campaigns, lead tracking through web tools, online ads, video, thought leadership, great written content, social engagement, SEO, integrated campaigns with your print campaigns are all viable possibilities for online marketing. It’s a diverse toolkit and can be applied in a way that makes sense. Like traditional marketing, its not one size fits all.
Online lead generation spurs growth and profitability, it facilitates word of mouth, and it opens avenues to a worldwide audience. In many ways, it’s an expansion of traditional marketing systems, and it has the potential to drive significantly more growth and profitability while costing less on the bottom line. If you want to successfully market your manufacturing company in the future, it’s time to to shift your marketing paradigm.
Get ahead of the game, and don’t get left behind. If you need help, hire a strategy firm to get you set up. To learn the basics of how to implement online marketing, we recommend this ebook: The Essential Step-By-Step Guide to Internet Marketing by Hubspot.