There are infinite metrics to measure marketing success and the specific goals vary from one company to the next, but we can oversimplify the objectives to the following:
1) You want to get more people to your website to inform them of your products and services.
2) You want more people who visit your website to eventually become customers.
These objectives are where marketing leads to advertising. Marketing involves everything this series has discussed to this point, including:
- The Starting Point Before Strategy
- Website Essentials
- Content Strategy
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Email Marketing
- Social Media
Advertising, on the other hand, is when you pay to get your brand in front of potential customers. Marketing only goes so far toward that first and foremost goal of getting people to your website. You’ll want to tap into the vast capabilities of digital advertising so you can consistently generate web traffic and keep a pipeline of new prospects flowing into your marketing and sales funnel. Here are a few of the most effective tactics:
If there’s one social media channel that every manufacturing company can and should leverage, it’s LinkedIn. There’s a lot to do before you start advertising on LinkedIn, including building out your company page, cleaning up your personal page as a business owner or leader, joining groups, and other best practices. Once the foundation of your LinkedIn presence is in place, the channel’s advertising opportunities are made for business-to-business companies like yours. You can target specific markets, industries, job titles and more while experimenting with different pricing models based on your budget.
The web is a world of keywords. With contextual targeting, we can serve ads on websites, blogs and articles where manufacturing-related keywords appear. For example, if your manufacturing company makes industrial machinery, we could run ads on websites that have keywords like “gearboxes” or, more specifically, “right angle gearboxes.” This is essentially a combination of SEO and its paid media cousin, PPC (pay-per-click) advertising, with the benefit of placing a nicely designed ad rather than a text-based ad like you see in PPC.
Getting people to your website isn’t all that difficult when you’re paying for advertising and simultaneously keeping up with your marketing. Converting those website visitors into customers, however, can be much more challenging. Even the best online conversion rates are inherently low because many people don’t make a purchasing decision during their first visit to a site. Instead of losing those leads after the first visit, we can stay in front of them through retargeting.
Retargeting works by adding a code to the back end of your website that tracks users’ device IDs and IP addresses (in line with the latest data privacy laws and opt-ins, of course). With this information, we can then serve ads for your brand on other websites where your past visitors go. Aside from boosting conversions, retargeting is ideal for manufacturers as it builds brand awareness. It can also help nudge previous and perhaps dormant customers to purchase from you again.
Although LinkedIn is far and away the most effective social channel for marketing and advertising your manufacturing company, Meta (aka Facebook) can be useful in its own ways too. Business owners and executives are often active in local networking and business groups. We can use these groups to target Facebook users based on their assumed interests. This is valuable because it brings another dimension of personalization to your ads while enabling you to reach people on a channel that’s more business-casual, whereas LinkedIn is highly professional. You’re firing on all cylinders.
The manufacturing industry has many trade publications. These are magazines that you know your audience is receiving and reading to stay on top of the latest industry news and trends.
In the digital age, most printed magazines are also available online in more of a blog or news site format. If you’re currently running print ads in any one or number of the industry publications out there, ask the publisher about digital advertising opportunities, whether alongside or in place of your printed ads. If you’re not currently running printed ads, focusing on digital advertising is generally more cost-effective and the results are certainly much more measurable. If you’re confident that you know which sites your audience is visiting for information, online publisher advertising is one of the easier display ad strategies to implement.
Ready to get started with any or all the above? So are we. Work with an all-in-one branding, marketing and advertising agency that knows the right tools and tactics to help your manufacturing company succeed. Contact Netwave today.