The current economy and a global supply chain have forced many manufacturers to reevaluate how they do business these days. Traditional sources of new business – word-of-mouth referrals and repeat business from existing customers have slowed to a trickle for many of these industrial companies. They now find themselves in uncharted waters where they have to think of and appreciate marketing as something more than mere sales support.
Business owners and executives crave stability and predictability but expectations and behaviors of industrial buyers have changed. It is time to get out of your comfort zones and rethink your industrial marketing strategies and tactics if you want your company to survive and thrive. That is an important and sometimes painful lesson that many manufacturers have learned over the past couple of years.
Entering new markets (49%) is cited as one of the top three areas where manufacturers and industrial companies will be spending more time and effort in 2011. (Source: 2011 Economic Outlook Survey by GlobalSpec.)
How do you enter a new market where you have no brand awareness, credibility or customer references?
Just pushing out marketing messages or blasting out a generic email campaign to a bought mailing list is likely to produce disappointing results for you. Cold teleprospecting in a new market is very difficult and expensive.
That’s where a blog can be a big help by:
- Building awareness and interest about your company’s offerings
- Positioning you as a thought leader in an industry where you have very little recognition
- Acquiring new readers (traffic) by using social media to announce your posts
- Driving interested visitors to your corporate Website, product and landing pages by weaving in links within your blog posts
- Sending warmed up prospects to your telemarketing team to qualify before your sales team gets involved
To learn more about blogging, read my earlier posts on industrial blogs.
Before you jump on the blogging bandwagon, carefully consider these caveats:
- A blog is not a quick-fix for lead generation. Like any other inbound marketing tactic, it will take time to build an audience and produce results.
- Don’t look at your blog to be the primary lead generator. It will make it easier for people to find you in search engines and blog posts will help to establish your knowledge and expertise in a new market. These in turn will lead to clicks to your Website where you can build a qualified list of new prospects and leads. (Quality over quantity)
- Don’t add to the existing noise. There are plenty of blogs in most industries. Don’t start another one just to have one. You need a fresh take on the industry/your application if you want to rise above the noise and be noticed.
Setting up a company blog and creating a steady stream of relevant content can be overwhelming. If this proves to be a challenge for your in-house resources, consider outsourcing the task at least initially.
Learn how my industrial marketing company can help you set up and use a blog as your inbound content marketing hub for lead generation in new markets.