As a manufacturer, you are like any other business looking for a competitive advantage. You need to distinguish your brand from your competition while proving to your customers that you have what they need. A great way to accomplish this is by focusing your marketing strategy on inbound marketing, which can be an effective way to use informative content to attract customers and promote your business. And like many manufacturers, inbound marketing operates 24/7.
Thought Leadership: Conveying Your Expertise to Your Customers
These days, B2B customers are savvy; they spend a lot of time online researching products and services that meet their needs and wants. In fact, 94% of them research products online before making a purchase decision.
Making the right decision is important, particularly for those who are investing a lot of money in the purchases they make. This is certainly the case for the customers manufacturers are targeting. They are often in the market for intricate and expensive products and services that fit their needs, which is why manufacturers have to know their products and services inside and out. They have to be thought leaders and have the ability to educate and inform their customers about their offerings.
Generate Brand Awareness
To be recognized as a thought leader, you first have to raise awareness of your brand. You need to bring customers to your website, blog, and social channels where they can obtain valuable information regarding your product or service and you can potentially convert them to leads and then buyers.
As a manufacturer, you may not be able to generate as much organic traffic to your website, so it’s imperative that you have a strong presence on your social channels. The good news is that there are likely many customers who are looking for exactly what you are manufacturing. It’s just a matter of identifying these individuals by creating personas based on the demographic information of your ideal customer.
You can then utilize marketing automation to segment your ideal customers, and create high-quality informative content, that includes industry-specific keywords and speaks specifically to them and the solution they need. If you do so, they will be sure to find you online.
Once you have these leads in the fold, you can familiarize them with your products or services through blog posts and videos. And for manufacturers, videos can be an invaluable commodity for sharing information with customers. For example, sharing short clips of your production process and showcasing your products in action can go a long way in demonstrating their quality and effectiveness.
The bottom line is that you want to be the authority in your area of manufacturing. The content mentioned above can be used to provide specific industry information, answers to your customers’ burning questions, and solutions to their problems.
Once you begin to familiarize your customers with your products or services through your inbound marketing efforts, they will not only become well acquainted with your brand but also recognize that you offer more than your competitors. But to do this, you need to nurture your leads. In other words, you have to continue to create valuable content, such as webinars, videos, ebooks, and whitepapers, and offer it to your leads during each step as they progress through the sales funnel. This can be accomplished through targeted email campaigns that nurture your leads all the way to the point of purchase.
Nurturing is also important because most manufacturers have a long sales cycle and customers may be scouting options long before they are ready to purchase. Nurturing leads means you’ll stay top of mind until they are ready to commit.
Increase Sales and Growth
Inbound marketing is all about building great relationships with your customers. You do this by being responsive, providing informative content and solutions, and knowing them well enough to offer the products or services they need. It’s a rewarding process, and if done correctly, it can bolster your sales, produce repeat customers, and further raise awareness of your brand through referrals.