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Choosing the right manufacturing marketing agency for your company takes much more than just a quick Google search. Just like the way your target audience buys your manufacturing offering, it requires in-depth research, vetting and time to make the best buying decision. In this blog post, we share 5 tips to consider when weighing your options.
When it comes to marketing, manufacturers and OEMs have distinct challenges: higher price points, longer buying cycles, and more decision-makers in the purchase process. However, effective marketing is possible – especially with the right partner supporting you. Here’s what to look for when choosing a manufacturing marketing agency.
Table of Contents
- Expertise in manufacturing (& your specific industry)
- Examples of work
- Full-service manufacturing marketing
- Proof of results (& ROI)
- Plans to make you stand out
#1. Expertise in Manufacturing (& Your Specific Industry)
Not all marketing agencies have experience in manufacturing marketing, which is why you need to make sure you choose an agency that does. Beyond that, the agency of your choosing should have specific experience in your manufacturing industry. For example, life sciences manufacturing marketing is much different than construction materials testing equipment manufacturing.
An agency with experience in your particular field will already have ironed out a streamlined marketing process that you can trust, and you will be able to see proof of that in their portfolio. Plus, they will be ready to begin targeting your ideal demographic with content that will get you noticed. Experience is extremely valuable because you don’t have to spend as much time catching your agency up.
But where do you start? How will you find an agency that will fit your needs and niche? Here are a few places you can start looking:
- Within your industry – Often, manufacturing marketing agencies will showcase their capabilities and work at manufacturing industry events and on manufacturing websites.
- Referrals – Ask peers if they know of any marketing agencies that specialize (and do good work) in your field.
- Chamber of Commerce directory – Your local Chamber of Commerce website can be a great resource to search their business directory and find marketing agencies in your industry. (Here’s the link for Lehigh Valley folks!)
#2. Examples of Work
Most marketing agencies have a portfolio that they are proud to show. You should look through this portfolio and see their work for yourself. Take a look at their content and website work. You can even do some digging to see what their clients rank on search engines when you search industry keywords. The agency’s work should check off all your boxes and give you a taste of what to expect if you hire them.
If an agency doesn’t have a portfolio displayed on their website, you can always ask them to see some examples for clarification. If there is hesitation to show you any work, or they don’t have anything to show you, that’s a red flag.
#3. Full-Service Manufacturing Marketing
Some marketing agencies only specialize in certain areas, like website development, digital advertising or branding. As a manufacturing company, it will benefit you to work with an agency that offers all marketing services – so you don’t have to bear the burden of everything else.
Integrated, full-service marketing ensures a thorough approach that helps you make the most of all of your marketing activities, connecting the dots between a beautiful and functional website, content creation, and all the channels you can use (paid or organic) to get that content out. Every marketing channel works together to build the demand that your manufacturing company needs.
A full-service marketing agency should offer:
- Marketing strategy
- Content marketing
- Graphic design
- Public relations
- Trade show marketing
- Process automation
- Website design
- Social media
#4. Proof of Results (& ROI)
In order to measure the ROI of hiring an agency, marketing efforts need to be specific and measurable. Once again, it is a good idea to ask an agency for some sample reports to see how they measure results. What metrics do they monitor regularly? What software do they use to track and analyze data?
Looking at an agency’s manufacturing case studies can help you get a feel of the success they provide for companies like yours. Case studies usually go into detail about a challenge, solution and results. Seeing the measurable results an agency provided for someone else in your field can help answer any lingering questions.
#5. Plans to Make You Stand Out
Since you are reading this, you already know that manufacturing is a highly competitive and diverse industry. You also already know that manufacturers need to leverage various integrated marketing efforts to stand out, such as branding, social media and SEO. Relying on referrals and leads from the sales department just isn’t enough – you need strategic content shared through multiple platforms to get the leads you want.
Before agreeing to work with a marketing agency, make sure to go over all the details of your retainer. It’s crucial that the agency you choose has the ability to grow your business in new ways and understand your company’s unique strengths and weaknesses. Successful manufacturing marketing is less about doing the same thing over and over, and more about using new strategies to bring a vision to life.
Marketing in the manufacturing industry is a unique challenge, and it’s vital that you choose a marketing agency that has the tools to get the job done. Following these five tips will keep you on track and lead you to the best marketing agency for your manufacturing company.