During the 20th century, the manufacturing industry became the catalyst for the American
economy. Manufacturing was instrumental in the creation of the middle class and eventually catapulted into a global economic superpower. The role of manufacturing in the U.S. economy began a sustained decline in the 1970’s, but we have seen uptick in the last few years. The National Association of Manufacturers reports that this sector contributed $1.87 trillion to the U.S. economy in 2012, compared to $1.73 trillion in 2011. As competition continues to intensify, companies have great pressure to take aggressive actions to stay relevant.
Competing in a Global Economy
Thinner profit margins have forced manufacturing companies to implement lean manufacturing methodologies to improve operations, design new products faster and scale production cost-efficiently. Many companies have directed capital resources into a wide variety of activities and projects that they determine will help the company to achieve its mission and goals, including:
Building a skilled, well-trained workforce
Improving product design
Designing the most efficient floor plan
Making manufacturing processes more cost-efficient
Implementing the latest technology and best practices
While these investments have the potential to produce a reasonable ROI, any yield will be minimized by the ever-increasing costs of distribution and retail channels.
Inbound Marketing Solutions for Manufacturing
Many manufacturers continue to rely on traditional sales channels -- distributors, retailers independent sales representatives and other methods. Many manufacturers overlook marketing and brand awareness entirely. It is for this reason that many manufacturers also have an under-performing website that generates few, if any, sales leads. Inbound marketing can help build brand recognition and drive the sales process by attracting qualified buyers to your business. This paradigm shift is critical for manufacturers in today's global, electronic economy.
Lead generation for manufacturing requires the integration of both sales and marketing departments for significant ROI . A holistic approach from point of contact to sales closing requires techniques including but not limited to: marketing automation, search optimization, content marketing, email marketing, public relations, social media and integrated website solutions. These online marketing solutions for manufacturing help build brand recognition and position you as a disruptor or leader in your manufacturing niche. They can also help pull qualified leads to your website.
Lead Generation for Manufacturers
To generate leads, you must engage prospective customers online. Today, 67% of the buying process has already been completed before a buyer contacts you. You must engage these buyers before they are two-thirds through their research. Your brand awareness net must pull in the buyers already looking for your products or services to ensure you will be considered as a viable option.
The right online content will help potential customers find you -- instead of your competitor.
Once you capture the lead, there are various methods for lead nurturing such as an email campaign that delivers special content to leads until they are sales ready. This technique enables potential customers to become familiar with your brand over time.
The Bottom Line
Your manufacturing business may have the expertise and products to establish yourself as an industry leader, but your company requires effective online sales and marketing solutions to promote your brand and help you compete to grow your enterprise.