Perhaps the one industry that I hear from the least is the manufacturing industry. A lot of these companies have old clients that have been using them for years, or they get jobs through word of mouth marketing or other partnership deals thatare done offline.
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But this doesn’t mean that you, the owner of the manufacturing company, should neglect your online presence.
Now let me be very clear here. When I say “online presence”, I don’t mean just simply having some website parked on a web host somewhere collecting dust. If all that you’ve done is hire on someone to create a one-page website and haven’t updated it in 3 years, then it’s time to give it a good overhaul. You also should be promoting your website more than just printing the website address on a business card or a pamphlet.
Manufacturers don’t have to be as concerned with other aspects of inbound marketing like other companies. Pay per click campaigns and landing pages aren’t really where your focus should be; where your focus needs to be is on your website.
Yes, it’s important to have a fresh and clean looking site. It’s important to make sure that it’s well organized and easy to navigate. It’s important to provide a number of different media for people to peruse and use (i.e. text content, video content, other visual content).
If you want to get any real business on the web, then you have to optimize your website using keywords and keyword phrases. This is going to work as the backbone to your entire internet marketing campaign. There are a number of free tools online that will enable you to do this, but our best advice is to hire on an inbound marketing firm to create your website for you. Not only will they create a great looking website, but it will also be search engine friendly – meaning that it can outrank your competition’s websites online, which will lead to an increase in business.
Tip 2: Have a Video Marketing Campaign
Video marketing is all the rage right now, and manufacturing companies need to get in on that. Many owners ask me, “What the heck am I going to make a video about?” but there are a whole lot of different ideas out there for you to make videos on. You can make videos that:
Show how the products are produced
Show different safety procedures and protocol that are followed in your factories
Include testimonials from happy and satisfied clients
Show the faces behind your company – you, your co-workers, even your accountant or bookkeeper. You’re a team, after all. Show yourselves off!
Having a “vlog” (video blog) that discusses topical content in your industry will also work out very well for your business. People love watching videos, and they love doing business with only the best people. If they regard you as a “pro” in your industry and you give them information in an easy format (i.e. video) you’ll undoubtedly gain a ton of customers.
Upload your videos to your website, YouTube, and other internet video channels.
Tip 3: Superior Customer Service
Having a website that acts as a base for visitors and customers to contact you will do you a world of good. Having some sort of “Contact Us” form will get you more business than you will probably ever realize. Make a promise to get back to your customer within 24-48 hours (at the very most) and make sure you get back to them.
Inbound marketing can help you set up an email marketing campaign that can take care of a lot of the emails that you’d receive through the web form. What’s also a great idea is setting up some social media accounts, such as on Facebook or Twitter, and respond to customer inquiries right there and then (if you have social media accounts already but think they may need some fine tuning, flip through our free eBook, “Social Media Tune-Up”). Facebook now allows businesses to contact people directly so you can have private conversations with them.
Having a blog is a recommendation that I give to any business of any niche out there. There are just too many benefits to having a blog that can’t be denied, such as:
Search engines love fresh content, and will give your site priority of you have a continual stream of new blog content
Blogs are more human than standard articles. People appreciate the “human touch” of a blog, especially online.
If you have a good blog, people will regard you as someone who is an expert in your niche, and as someone who is to be respected. Not only will they want to hire you, but they’ll be more open to your sales suggestions.
As a manufacturer, your website is #1 for your company. But once the website is created, consider branching out into blogging and vlogging, and focus on providing superior customer support to win people over.
If you're a manufacturer looking to maximize your online marketing efforts, contact us today to schedule your free marketing analysis.