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ManufacturingHow Marketing Automation can bridge the gap between manufacturers and their buyers, and their traditional and online sales.
We can consider manufacturing companies as companies that create goods and products rather than services. Think about companies that manufacture automotives, electronics and metals, but also pharmaceuticals and personal products. Some of the biggest manufacturing companies are Volkswagen, Apple and Johnson & Johnson for example. Like for other businesses, manufacturers can also gain an advantage by leveraging Marketing Automation. There are typical challenges such companies often have to deal with, that can be addressed with marketing technologies.
Manufacturers are usually big companies that are getting more and more interested in digitalization nowadays. They see benefits in transforming their company and want to implement some sort of digitalization. In some cases, a new marketing team or lead happens to get hired, who has experience with Marketing Automation or other marketing technology, which triggers the start of working with new digital technology. However, we mostly see that these companies show interest in digitalization because they want to skip the traditional sales chain. They make products and want to start selling through other channels, which is why they start a web shop for example. They often use B2C web shop practices to do that, but that doesn’t always work as expected. Additionally, there are many other ways to digitally transform your company. When employees think of digitalization, the initial idea is often: let’s start a web shop! However, Marketing Automation creates much more value than only selling your products through an online channel.
Selling a complex product
Besides that, you often see B2B manufacturers offering a more complex product that includes a longer decision process for customers. Sales of these products are often technically oriented and buyers will need to have some level of expertise to make the right decision. However, the buyers of these products are not necessarily technically savvy. One example of a client that is in a similar position, is Lely. They are leading manufacturers in very complex farming technologies, like feeding and milking robots. Farmers who (usually) have zero experience with such technologies will have to work with these complicated machines. So, how are you going to bridge the gap between the non-tech savvy buyer and the tech savvy seller? How will you improve the buyer journey? A Marketing Automation platform like Marketo Engage can help with that.
Traditional Sales vs. Online Sales
Marketing Automation can also bridge the gap between your traditional channels and online sales, which brings us to a big challenge for manufacturing companies. They traditionally do direct sales, or sales through channels like wholesalers. They use account management and inside sales for that. Combine this with the start of a web shop, and that leads to what? Right, that often leads to poor cooperation and competition between their direct sales team and their own web shop. With the use of Marketing Automation, you can ensure that the new digitalized way of doing sales is an addition to your traditional sales. You will be able to implement lead scoring for example, based on behavior of your potential clients on your website or web shop. When people will reach a significant score, you can follow up on them in multiple ways. You will also be able to nurture your leads with the right content, which will potentially make them more likely to buy. You could set up an abandoned cart program, which nurtures your potential clients with the right content when they have put products in their shopping cart, but have left the cart without buying anything. Another important topic that can be addressed with Marketing Automation is acquiring customer feedback. With that feedback, you can lift your marketing efforts and customer experience to another level. These are just a few examples of wat Marketing Automation can do.
Marketing & Sales alignment
Another recurring topic, which is also relevant for manufacturing companies, is marketing and sales alignment. The final commercial responsibility most likely lies with the sales team. However, promoting and selling through a web shop and making use of Marketing Automation are often handled by the marketing team. When the cooperation between marketing and sales is not good, the results of your Marketing Automation efforts will neither be good. A platform like Marketo Engage has to go hand in hand with a CRM system to perform at its best.
Last but not least, a very important topic for companies in this branch is how to deal with fast growing technologies. When a manufacturer starts with Marketing Technology, this can lead to problems. Manufacturers are not necessarily fast growing companies and don’t always have a clear vision on what the future of their company should look like. A Marketing Automation platform (e.g. Adobe Marketo Engage) is a rapidly developing technology, with which you can achieve amazing results on scalability and being future proof. That’s why it can be good for such companies to get some help with implementing Marketing Technologies, so they can get insights on how it will assist them and on all the possibilities.
There are many ways Marketing Technology and Automation can benefit companies in the manufacturing field. If you’re interested in how we could help you with that, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.