At first mention, blogs and social media posts don't appear to fit with heavy machinery and hard hats.
Manufacturing is a large-scale serious sector with millions of dollars changing hands and major projects to undertake. How could a blog or a tweet make any difference?
Although word is still spreading slowly, it is undeniable: consumer behavior has fundamentally changed. It's now up to businesses - like those in manufacturing - to adapt. 'Adapting,' in this case, is developing a strong and authoritative online presence.
How Inbound Makes the Connection
To have a strong presence, you need to be found: 90% of B2B buyers start their research on Google. If your company doesn't show up, you're unlikely to get that contract. Everything in the Inbound methodology is designed to build your online presence and generate leads. Using Inbound can automatically make those initial connections without awkward cold calls or cold e-mails. With improved SEO, you can rank in Google for the terms that your target customers are searching for. When they go looking for a solution, they'll see your company in the first handful of results. That gives you top-of-mind awareness where your customers are looking first. Instead of going the traditional advertising-and-marketing route of interrupting potential customers with your messaging, Inbound ensures that potential customers will seek you out. Inbound sets your company up as the answer to a potential customer's problem. Plus, by creating and sharing original content, your marketing acts as a magnet - naturally pulling qualified leads toward you.
How Inbound Makes You an Expert
Inbound Marketing uses quality content creation to attract potential customers. The content you create also builds your authority and turns you into the expert. When someone searches Google for an answer to a problem or information on a product, your company should be there with an answer. If you are, you've just become an industry resource and that helpful information you provided sets you apart from your competitors. When it's time to buy, most prospects will prefer to do business with the expert. Quality content that helps prospects demonstrates your value before your first phone call or sit down. Once you arrive at that stage, your potential customer has been organically led along their Buyer's Journey and will be more prepared to discuss the specifics of your offering. Even social media has its place in the manufacturing industry. You can build awareness of your company by sharing your original content through those channels and even sharing other industry articles that will be of interest to your target demos. All of these content pieces (including content offers, which you exchange for lead capture) work in concert to establish your company as an industry leader.
It's time for the manufacturing industry to embrace Inbound and adapt to new consumer behaviors.