Many manufacturing businesses, especially smaller ones (100 or fewer employees), have never proactively marketed their products, services or brand.
While it may seem unimaginable for many businesses to NOT have an ongoing marketing strategy, it just hasn't been a necessary focus for many manufacturers up until this point. It's been more of something leadership knew they should be doing, but it was never made into a must.
The obvious question for any manufacturer in this position is...
How do I start marketing a manufacturing business?
The answer to that question is Inbound Marketing. Why Inbound? Here's a few reasons:
- It's highly measurable unlike other marketing tactics, creating a clear view of ROI
- It's marketing to buyers how they want to be marketed to, through valuable, helpful content, not interruptive, old-school tactics
- It's highly agile and adjustable unlike traditional media
- It's more effective than traditional advertising
- Most of your competitors are probably behind the curve in getting started
Inbound marketing is not a very direct starting point though as you can quickly see that Inbound Marketing includes a broad array of web marketing tactics, from SEO and social media to content marketing and CRMs.
The Place To Start Is Identifying Your Best Buyers, Buyer Persona(s)
If you want to start marketing a manufacturing business, you should start with ROI as a focus up front! You need to identify your best buyers, or buyer persona(s). This will make every other Inbound tactic work better and improve ROI.
Your best buyers aren't a target market, they go much further than that. They personify the needs, wants, pain points and frustrations of your ideal customer. We have many resources on our blog and in other forms for creating your buyer personas so I won't go much deeper here.
I can't emphasize enough though, that skipping this step, or short-cutting it, will result in slower success with Inbound Marketing and more strategy adjustments over time.
Your buyer persona(s) should be the foundation of all of your marketing. Without them, you are throwing marketing lawn darts and hoping the land. With them, you are shooting a sniper rifle that you know will hit the intended target.
With Buyer Personas Comes Focused, ROI-Driven Marketing
Creating your persona(s) may not be as sexy as reskinning your website, or setting up conversion-optimized landing pages, but it will make sure those sexier tactics are more effective.
Nothing's less sexy than investing in marketing that doesn't produce the intended results, increased sales. Even worse, explaining to your boss that you didn't get the result you hoped for...
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