A recent study done in New Jersey, took 113 typical manufacturers (if there is such a thing) and compared their marketing strategies to the top 25 manufacturers in the same state. As expected, the study showed that the top 25 companies had better marketing strategies and this was definitely the reason for their success – duh! More money + more marketing = more successful company.
The key takeaway from this study was the primary marketing method used: Inbound Marketing. For those who may not know, inbound marketing attracts customers and qualified leads by setting the company up as an authority in their industry. It specifically involves content marketing (articles, whitepapers, data sheets, video, etc.), social media marketing and search engine optimization.
“Inbound Marketing for manufacturers helps establish your company as an Industry Authority!”
The reverse of Inbound Marketing is obviously Outbound Marketing – commonly called advertising. This is where your company is positioned all around the web in common ad placements such as pay per click, banner ads, trade magazine ads, etc. The disadvantage to outbound marketing is that it’s your word that your product or service is the best solution for the customer. While it truly may be the “best solution”, there is generally no data to back this claim. You’ve not developed a relationship with your audience based on solid solution-based information but rather you’ve attracted their attention because you stood in the crowd and yelled the loudest and longest – make sense?
There is a place for everything but one things for sure…
Outbound marketing is far more expensive and because you have to convince your audience that you’re the best solution for them, you’ll see longer and longer durations between initial contact and final sale . With inbound marketing, a lead comes to you because they’ve read a whitepaper you’ve written, watched a video you produced or have followed you on a social network and have come to understand that you are an Authority In Your Industry. The obvious solution for them is to work with your company.
Inbound Marketing takes time to develop, mostly because it takes time to develop content, videos, etc. and get enough brand recognition that you’re company becomes the logical choice for all things ________________________ (insert what you sell).
The key is to get started right now. For years, we’ve pushing for more content from our customers – content helps with search engine rankings, brand development, etc. but now it’s proven that Content is King. Content will bring qualified buyers to your door without you spending tens of thousands of dollars every year on Outbound Marketing methods that bring little if any results.