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B2B Marketing Conference 2020 Wrap-Up: Manufacturing Marketing World

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Did you attend Manufacturing Marketing World 2020

The 2020 version of this manufacturing and B2B marketing conference was held remotely due to COVID-19. But hey, there’s a silver lining -- each webinar is now available on demand! (See below.)

We’ve recapped MMW 2020 for those who missed all the actionable tips and insights for modernizing your marketing:

MMW B2B Marketing Conference Speakers for 2020

Manufacturing Marketing World 2020 brought seven expert speakers together, all specialists in a different area of digital sales and marketing. Click each one to automatically scroll to the related webinar:

1. ‘CRM: 10 Ways to Build Total Adoption Instead of Abandonment’

Over 1/3 of customer relationship management (CRM) projects fail. Why?

  • Lack of functionality
  • No strategy
  • Lack of process change
  • No top-down support
  • Change
  • Many, many other factors/excuses

Josh shared the best ways to make sure you're driving adoption within your sales/marketing team, instead of abandonment.

  • Choose the right tool.
  • Create a strategy before you start building.
  • Avoid DIYing only to save money.
  • Get buy-in from your teams.
  • Maintain buy-in from leadership.
  • Get clean, accurate data.
  • Train, then train some more.
  • Find your champions in the company.
  • Train for efficiency and effectiveness, not inspection.
  • Be supportive!

Whatever change you try to implement will likely be met with a combination of resistance, complacency, apathy, and statements about how it-all-sounds-very-wonderful-but-I-just-don’t-have-the-bandwidth-right-now. To nip those problems in the bud, use Josh’s actionable insights on CRM tool selection, training, support, and adaptation.

KEY TAKEAWAY: Get full buy-in on the right CRM, then actually use it to its full potential.

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2. ‘Maximize the Incredible Business Opportunities Waiting for You on LinkedIn’

Note: These tips are for users who want to leverage LinkedIn as a marketing and sales tool. If you’re looking for a job, this ain’t the webinar for you.

We’ve all seen those LinkedIn profiles with no face, bare-bones info, and only 31 connections.

It’s not a question anymore whether you should be on LinkedIn, it’s now how you should be on LinkedIn.

Or, as Curt puts it, it’s what you know about who you know.

If your dream client pulls up your LinkedIn page, would you feel comfortable or even proud? If the answer is “no” to either, you’re years behind your peers.

Curt provided great examples of unique, flavorful, and impactful LinkedIn bios. Like pretty much everything inbound marketing, Curt encourages a customer-first approach: leaving out “I” and “me” when possible, and talking about what you and your company bring to the table.

  • Give referrals -- don’t just ask for them!
  • Do you have a call-to-action on your page (i.e. free e-book or consultation) to drive traffic to your company’s website? 
  • Do users have instant access to your contact information?

Yes, you’ll strike out a lot, but any batting average above .000 is worth it when it comes to making positive connections.

KEY TAKEAWAY: Spend 1 hour per week on LinkedIn. Make 5-10 connections per day, one post per week, and five valuable comments on others’ posts.

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3. ‘Video & the Buyer’s Journey: Producing and Publishing Video Content with Context’

In a 2019 study, 84% of people said they’ve been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video. 

Manufacturing and B2B video is a great, modern approach to reaching buyers at all stages of their journey. Even millennials are aging -- just because your audience didn’t prefer videos 2 years ago doesn’t mean they aren’t interested in it today. 

During this presentation, Ryan covered types of videos your buyers are looking for, how you can produce them on a tight budget, and where they should be published. Good news: Video production is not nearly as scary as it sounds!

Ryan gave specific examples of:

  • Awareness stage videos, which identify a problem or opportunity, possibly when a buyer is searching for symptoms.
  • Consideration stage videos, which provide solutions to leads who have ID’d a problem and are narrowing their options.
  • Decision stage videos, which present your specific solution to a buyer who’s now fully educated and ready to buy.

KEY TAKEAWAY: B2B videos balance substance and spectacle based on the stages of your buyer's journey.

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4. ‘How to Develop Blog Topics & Keywords for a Niche Industry’

Sure, it’s easy to shoot video of a cool manufacturing process. … But how do we write about the nitty-gritty details?

This presentation started with general do’s and don’t’s in business blogging -- many manufacturers will be the first to admit they’re clueless about B2B blogging best practices.

The second half of the webinar was pure tutorial -- a literal look at:

  • How to pick topics that educate rather than “sell.” 
  • How analyzing past performance and auditing current marketing materials -- print and digital -- can reveal shortcuts to new content creation. (A great practice for small or one-person teams!)
  • How to conduct keyword research, step by step.
  • How keywords turn into topics relevant to your company’s audience.

If you’re hoping to learn more about content creation and the balance between pleasing people and pleasing Google, check out this presentation.

KEY TAKEAWAY: Topics should come from thorough keyword and competitor research, as well as audits of prior marketing efforts. A B2B content strategy should never be “make it up as you go.”

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5. ‘Relationship Selling in 2021’

In 2020, none of your leads could visit your facility.

That’s a problem, right? Even in the digital age, relationships still start with people. But today, those relationships often start online. And if you’re not meeting them there, your competitor is.

Today’s buyers want frictionless sales. They expect you to know their specific needs telepathically, before they ever make first contact with you.

Check out his presentation to learn five ways to improve relationship selling in 2020:

  • Help, don’t sell.
  • Use new ways for salespeople to connect and add value in 2020 (i.e. videos in 1:1 emails).
  • Manufacturers spend lots of time on new equipment, but not on internal productivity. Change this today.
  • Try more “smarketing” -- sales and marketing alignment.
  • Get your happy customers to sell for you.

If you’re still undecided as to whether you want to listen to a HubSpot guy for 45 minutes, know two things:

  • Dan is very, very energetic
  • He gives away several hundred free things.

KEY TAKEAWAY: Use your newfound reliance on remote sales tactics as an advantage. Provide value to your leads, and they’ll return the favor.

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6. ‘Google Ads Fundamentals, and How Manufacturers Can Leverage PPC for Success’

In this presentation, Zach explained the basics of what PPC advertising is and how it works. He also covered how search and display ads work, then revealed how to measure success.

Here’s the CliffsNotes version: PPC stands for pay-per-click advertising. Since only 25% of Google Search users continue past Page 1 of their results, PPC is an excellent tool for B2Bs that are behind in their traffic goals.

So, how do Google Search Ads work? How do Google Display Ads work? Zach’s session skillfully weaved between the two options, and detailed where they make sense for your business’s goals.

Of course, all great search ads start with targeted keywords, so they were also addressed by Zach. 

Don’t forget to watch the whole session -- there are bonus tips at the end!

KEY TAKEAWAY: With proper keyword, audience, and targeting research, Google Ads helps you reach target customers while providing valuable data you can extrapolate to other traffic avenues.

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7. ‘Marketing Automation: Time-Saving Tools and Tricks’

Holly’s presentation covered what you need to know when starting out with marketing automation, as well as best practices if you're a seasoned pro.

Why tout automation when MMW just spent the previous six sessions preaching human-to-human interaction?

  • It saves your marketing team time.
  • It saves your sales team time.
  • It organizes important info.
  • It improves your marketing performance
  • It can delight your leads and customers.

Holly touched on several useful tools for your efforts, walking through real-life examples of marketing automation:

  • Internal Workflows: Where can better internal sales/marketing communication boost efficiency and plug gaps?
  • External Workflows: How can automation pick up the slack in lead follow-up so you’re not late on touching base -- or not doing it at all.
  • Social Media: Depending on your platform, you may be able to automate scheduling, stream monitoring, reporting, and hashtag tracking.
  • CRM Tools: A good CRM empowers you to easily automate certain marketing steps, organize lead and customer data, and access reports.

KEY TAKEAWAY: Work with your sales, service, and marketing teams to identify the largest efficiency gaps in your ongoing processes. From there, find software that best fits your needs to plug the gap, and work through automating a solution that addresses these efficiency concerns.

Manufacturing Marketing World: See You in 2021! (Hopefully in Person)

Of course, the perfect strategy doesn’t exist -- you’ll have to find what works “perfectly” for your team. The webinars above have something for every team, so if one session doesn’t click with you, click on another!

Hope to see you next year! In the meantime, check out the 7 sessions from MMW, On-Demand!

Access all 7 MMW 2020 Sessions ON-DEMAND!