It’s no secret that opportunities for entrepreneurs to enter the manufacturing industry have grown, making it a popular sector among entrepreneurs who want to start a successful business. Global growth and innovation have made it a favorable environment to build a business and sell it to a larger company or expand into other markets and sectors. Companies like Pebble, Nebia, and Drop, began with an entrepreneurial light bulb and morphed into product companies that are now selling online and catching the attention of the Fortune 500 crowd. If you search for Pebble online today, you’ll see that it’s now called FitBit. The smartwatch start-up was acquired by FitBit in 2017 for $23 million. While tech gets all of the headlines, it’s the growth trends and profit margins in manufacturing that make it a steady and rewarding industry.
If you own a manufacturing business or are considering a start-up, plan for your future as if a $23 million buyer is waiting to buy your business. While every business should have an online presence, ROI on investments in lead generation websites, content marketing, SEO, and paid digital ads is critical in manufacturing. Where there is an opportunity, there is also heavy competition. Digital marketing can be overwhelming, especially if you’re working within a tight budget. Avoid the “analysis paralysis” phase and begin with these two digital marketing pillars. Once these are established, you’ll see progress, and you’ll be ready to take it to the next level.
A Lead Generation Website
Your website is a doorway to your product or service. If it’s pretty but doesn’t capture visitor information for nurturing campaigns or future sales, what good is it? Even if you secure a large deal through one client, long-term success will come from diversifying your client base. Buyers and/or distributors are more likely to do business with you if they can easily fill out a form, download a guide, or make a phone call. Don’t settle for a website that doesn’t generate leads for you on a consistent basis! Trade shows and industry networking is great, but there are over 4.5 BILLION people on the internet (Statista.com)! If your team is new to the concept of websites for lead generation, begin with recommendations from HubSpot. An experienced marketer can implement their guidelines and as your business grows, it can grow with HubSpot. The new HubDB feature gives your marketing team the ability to build product pages for you without complex eCommerce platforms. HubDB has many uses, but it’s an excellent tool for offering a ‘Buy Online’ option as well as a B2B conversion path for offering detailed product specifications and pricing options.
Paid Advertising Efficiency
Maximizing your paid advertising efficiency will not only make for better ROI, but it will also help to boost your brand. Dynamic display ads, retargeting, and video ads can be used to support organic advertising efforts (SEO) while your brand is in the growth phase. There are many factors that go into optimizing your ads to prevent budget waste, but knowing what to look for can help you succeed. If you’re outsourcing paid advertising services, be sure to educate yourself on the following topics so that you choose the right ad partner:
- Landing Page Performance When evaluating the ads that get the most clicks, evaluate the bounce rate and average time on page, too. It will take you a while to get to know the conversion cycle but if a page has a high bounce rate and low time on page, ask about A/B testing to avoid wasting ad spend on a landing page that doesn’t
- Call Tracking Most paid ad marketing teams will report data from Google Analytics, but unless you use a third-party call-tracking provider, you won’t know the number of phone calls that you’re getting. Look into tools like CallRail and
- Micro conversion Tracking The higher the price for your product or service, the longer the sales cycle will be. Avoid wasting money by tracking micro-conversions (newsletter sign-ups, downloads, social media follows) and follow up with a nurturing
Competing industrial and manufacturing entrepreneurs will spend thousands every year on digital marketing, so it’s important to build a digital marketing plan with these two pillars. Don’t fall for vanity metrics during your growth phase – if your company attracts a buyer in the future, they’ll want to see the history of a solid marketing plan. Capturing data and metrics from your digital marketing plan will set you up for consistent, measurable growth. Setting up a solid foundation for digital marketing will not only help you capture attention from your target audience, it will also place you at the top of the list for investors and potential buyers.
Markelle Harden delivers digital strategies to industrial and manufacturing clients at Knowmad Digital Marketing. She helps clients invest in lead-generation strategies that drive the right target audience to websites through a combination of conversion optimization, paid ads, SEO, and content marketing. She loves analyzing campaign performance to build and improve ROI as companies grow. Offline, you’ll find her relaxing in the Carolina mountains or on a Carolina beach with a book in her hand.