Marketing 101 for Manufacturing Companies
When it comes to manufacturing companies, creating blog articles and marketing content can be tricky because you have two very different customers: the end consumers who actually use your product and your wholesale/distribution clients. Here are our recommendations on how manufacturing companies should approach their inbound marketing strategies.
In addition to our general recommendations on choosing a blog topic, manufacturing companies should make sure that their blog articles are all about educating both the end consumer and their direct wholesale/distribution clients.
DO blog about:
- How to use your products
- The unique features/benefits of the products
- Reference materials
- Success stories about how customers use your products
- How to choose the right product
- Industry news such as laws, regulation, and/or trends (blogs should never be just about your product)
When blogging about these topics, make sure that you have identified your buyer persona(s) so that you can target the right audience. And to get the most out of the content you just created, make sure to promote your blogs to your audience.
DON’T blog about:
- Events and trade shows
- Holidays (e.g. Happy Thanksgiving)
- Specials (e.g. discounts)
There are three reasons why you don’t want to blog about events, holidays, and specials:
- These are time-sensitive events, so you should use a more immediate communication channel.
- The content for this type of information does not actually educate your audience on your products.
- This information is fun, informs your audience about where you will be, and can build goodwill. However, it also clutters your blog roll and distracts people from finding information about your products.
This is not to say that you shouldn't write about these topics. Rather, there is a better communication channel for this type of content: your social media channels.
Yes, even manufacturing companies can be social! The two main channels we recommend are Facebook and LinkedIn.
For time-sensitive events and tradeshows, use Facebook and LinkedIn to get social with your clients and attendees. One of our favorite ways to incorporate social media into trade shows is to create an event on Facebook and encourage people to sign up and visit your booth.
Holidays are fun and show a different side of your company. Posts about holidays can be short, fun and pretty easy to create. Because these types of posts do not tend to be directly related to your products and are typically very short, there is not a lot of educational or SEO value in posting them as a blog. Instead, we recommend using social media as the communication channel for these types of posts.
Discounts and specials are, by nature, a limited time offer. Blog articles, on the other hand, should be evergreen content that adds value, no matter how “old” the article is. Thus, discounts and specials should be marketed and advertised on social media for two reasons:
- You can actually pay to have these types of promotional posts boosted to your target audience.
- People who find value in your offer can “share” and “like” your post, and then it gets posted to their friends, family and co-workers for “free.”
With the millennials accounting for the largest segment of today’s workforce, it is more important than ever for manufacturing companies to adapt to the simple fact that today, people research before they buy. Having a solid inbound marketing strategy will help make sure that manufacturing companies connect with the end consumers of their product as well as their direct customers: the wholesale clients and distributors.
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Written by David Lee
As the founder of Do What Works, my goal is to take the best practices and lessons I learned from working with Fortune 500 companies and bring them to the mid-size market and help our clients grow their business.