Looking at the present state of digital marketing for manufacturers, we know many manufacturers are just beginning to realize that digital marketing is at a tipping point where it is no longer optional and must become a bigger part of any marketing plan for a manufacturing company. And we also realize that a manufacturer marketing is likely to have scant resources.
We know this terrain and we’re here to help. Here are 10 actionable steps we talk about in the fifteenth episode of the Industrial Marketer podcast, which you can take to boost your digital marketing for manufacturers. As you put these suggestions into action, remember to start small and share successes with your internal marketing champion as you go along.
10 Actions You Can Take to Improve Your Digital Marketing for Manufacturers
1. Segment Your Contact Database
Ideally you have initiatives in place that will benefit from digital marketing for manufacturers, or something in mind to meet an existing goal. One option is to segment your database into customers, prospects and former customers, which might help jumpstart a campaign for former customers or help retain existing ones. You can segment your contact database by personas (e.g., engineers vs. purchasers) or sort it by their transaction history or many other ways.
2. Gather Common Questions/Needs from Sales and Write One Article
Engineers love product features; sales people need help framing solutions. Bridging that disconnect can help generate leads. It also might lead to more content on your site and more of a focus on customers in your marketing. Just one new piece of content on your website will help visitors find what they need and help your SEO. And even addressing one customer concern can prompt more of a solutions mindset.
3. Update One Website Page
Refresh or revise the copy on one high-profile web page. And while you are in the admin side of your content management system, you might check out of the keyword targets and make any quick updates there as well.
4. Sign up for Three Industry Directories
You can start with free industrial directories, but do some research into niche directories that are more directly related to your company. You may come across an interesting trade group that requires a membership or offers paid promotions but their audience will be a lot more targeted.
5. Claim or Update Your Free Google Business Profile
It is surprising how some manufacturers who do digital marketing have not taken advantage of Google My Business, which is used for search, maps and more. Considering that the vast majority of new business queries begin with a simple web search, there is much at stake for a first-time visitor to your site. Make their initial contact with your manufacturing business a good experience.
6. Check Your Online Listings
While you are sprucing up your Google listing, use a tool like Moz Listing Checker to look at your company address listings online. You also might be surprised by where your listings show up as many sites aggressively scrape public data.
7. Set up Website Tracking
Google Analytics offers pretty comprehensive free website tracking, and there are plenty of other analytics tools that can be useful when it comes to digital marketing for manufacturing. Most manufacturers engaged in digital marketing already have some sort of baseline website tracking set up. If that’s you, there are probably improvements you could make such as updating goals, creating a dashboard, or setting up automatic reports. There are lots of tutorials out there that can help make what you want to accomplish easy.
8. Put $500 toward Google PPC Advertising
If you choose wisely in targeting a specific audience, you will be surprised by how much you can learn with a small investment in pay-per-click advertising. PPC ads appear next to relevant searches when people exhibit direct intent relative to your target keywords. You only pay when someone clicks on your ad to visit your site, and you can tweak your ads anytime, offering lots of opportunity to experiment and try different messaging.
10. Do a Quick Industry Overview
Spend 30 minutes searching for information on different competitors and searching industry questions. You will get a glimpse into your industry landscape and see how your competitors may be positioning themselves — and what sorts of digital marketing activities they are emphasizing.
3. Share Five Pieces of Industry News
There are plenty of benefits in helping keep your audience informed about trends and news. You keep your brand on their radar screen, help them stay informed and gain some engagement on social media, email — whatever communication channel you use to share. This exercise could easily turn into a once-a-week effort . And you might be surprised by how much contacts appreciate you passing on good information, and they may begin to view you as more of an industry expert.
Generate Momentum for Digital Marketing for Manufacturers with Small Steps and Small Wins
For many on the front lines, these and similar fundamental steps can help produce incremental results that can be used to educate others at the company about the value of digital marketing for manufacturers, putting you on course to make the case for the transition from traditional to digital marketing.
Listen to the Podcast for More on Digital Marketing for Manfacturers
For more insights into digital marketing for manufacturers, tune into Episode 15 of the Industrial Marketer podcast.
Be Sure to Subscribe to the Industrial Marketer Podcast
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And if you have any ideas for topics you’d like us to cover on the podcast — or here on the Industrial Marketer website — make sure to leave a comment and let us know!