The time has come for us to stop focusing on the product, and to start focusing on the customer.
Manufacturers have traditionally concentrated their marketing efforts on the product – features and benefits, bells and whistles, the “latest and greatest!” For a long time, those kinds of marketing efforts worked. And still do! But there’s a time and place for it – the end of the sales funnel.
Today, prospective buyers are doing their own research first. They self-educate and absorb the information. This is the first step for all buyers in the modern day sales funnel. Manufacturing marketers are starting to catch on to this. They’re realizing that instead of pitching to their audience, they should be educating them.
Think of it this way. Your audience is in the market for your product because they have a specific problem that needs to be addressed. But what they really want is information about how to prevent, resolve, and better understand that problem. They’re looking for the kind of information that you can provide.
How? By leveraging the knowledge and expertise of your own employees. Work with your engineers, product developers, and industry experts provide information that will be beneficial to your audience. Not only is this an effective way to engage your audience, but it’s also a way for you to establish credibility. So when your audience is done doing their research and is ready to buy… your company will get their business. Because you were the ones who helped them out the most.
It’s a unique approach, to be sure. But that’s exactly why it works. Because even though some companies are starting to catch on, not all manufacturers are willing to implement this kind of marketing method. So the ones who are, will have an immediate advantage over the competition.
Here are some ways that you can start sharing information with your target audience:
- Business Blogging – Remember to keep the content relevant to your audience by focusing on the needs of your audience. Content should be about specific problems, industry trends, etc.
- Emails / Newsletters – These quick, simple communication pieces can be delivered directly to your audience. Use these tools to share information about upcoming events and to communicate topics relevant to the manufacturing industry.
- Webinars – Online learning is the best way to engage with your audience. When done right, webinars will leave your audience lining up for more.