Why does a manufacturing business need digital marketing? Five years ago, that may have been a valid question, but today, the verdict is in. B2B buyers are human beings and they make decisions in the same way any shopper will. They research the product, the company reputation and reliability, and pricing before you ever get a crack at selling them. If you don’t have the content they are searching for, you’ll never get a chance to close. What’s more, you can lose previous customers lured to another site when they go searching for answers.
What is Digital Marketing?
At its core, digital marketing is content-based. You lure potential buyers to your site, woo them with content, and sell them with your knowledge and reputation. Then you keep them coming back with the answers they need and the customer service they want.
Your job is not to produce a steady stream of words to fill up your website, your emails, and your blog. Random content is not effective. Your job is to know your customers so well that you can anticipate what they will ask, and have the answers ready and waiting for them. It’s not hard, because you have history. While new questions will certainly pop up from time to time, most will be asked again and again as customers come on board.
If your reps are well trained, the answers to “what do my customers want to know?” are in your CRM. Use your data to find the questions most asked by customers, and be sure to answer the follow-up questions. Consider your content a knowledge base; a first-stop resource to give customers the fast, in-depth information they are looking for. Comprehensive informational content can save them time and cut down on your customer service hours, all while being a great selling point.
What Digital Marketing Does
Digital marketing is an inexpensive (by comparison) method of reaching a highly targeted audience with offers they are most likely to be interested in. You’ll take your business to the next level by:
- Increase Brand Awareness. Customers are more likely to do business with your company if they recognize your name. Digital marketing gets your brand in front of a larger audience.
- Build Your Mailing List. Your most valuable asset is your mailing list, and getting people to sign up isn’t always easy. Digital marketing strategy might include contests, valuable content to download, or other incentives in exchange for information.
- Encourage Customer Loyalty. Digital marketing campaigns tempt your existing customers with offers and content tailored to their needs. Your digital strategy should include social media, and give you constant opportunities to engage and respond to customers. Customers and their onlookers will see the way you respond to your customers. It’s a very public way to build a reputation for stellar customer service.
- Show Your Expertise. Your content and the answers you give demonstrate your knowledge and authority to readers, who may recommend you to their followers, organically increasing your reach.
Building a Digital Marketing Strategy
An effective digital marketing strategy starts with knowledge: understanding your customers, your industry, and your goods or services.
Manufacturing companies are often faced with having to explain technical topics such as engineering specs to a non-technical audience. One of the biggest challenges is often speaking your customer’s language. You may have to create content that explains what you do without going over readers’ heads…or dumbing it down.
Your content should strike a balance by avoiding industry terms. To understand the concept better, think about talking to your doctor. If you were told you were a victim of synchronous diaphragmatic flutter, would you be more nervous than if your doctor said “you have the hiccups”? Save industry terms for meetings and talk to the public in plain English.
Get the topics and the language right, then forge ahead with a strategy that includes social media, email campaigns, and a wide wealth of informative content. Blow your competitors out of the water by becoming the go-to resource in your industry.
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