Case Studies Should Be Part of Your Content Mix

By Rachel Kerstetter, PR Architect, Sonnhalter

The terms “case study” and “testimonial” are sometimes used interchangeably, however case studies are not exactly testimonials. Although one piece of content can pull double duty, a simple testimonial can’t provide the value for your organization that a case study can.

In marketing, a testimonial is essentially a statement by a customer providing an endorsement of a product or service. A case study is a more in-depth, valuable piece of content. Spinach content if you will. Case studies explore a user’s journey, not just with your organization, but through their entire problem and solution. Ideally, (more…)

How to Score Big This Manufacturing Day

By Chris Ilcin, Account Superintendent, Sonnhalter

It may seem like Manufacturing Day (first Friday of October) is still far off on the horizon, but the time to plan is now. With schools getting ready to take their summer breaks, you should contact them now in order to make sure your company is ready to highlight the great careers available in modern manufacturing and the trades.

And while the official Manufacturing Day site has great tools to help you plan and promote your event, a panicked phone call I got on Friday gave me another idea to share.

Image via RCB Flickr

Fortunately the panicked call wasn’t from a client, and wasn’t an actual “emergency.” Nope, it was my introduction to the latest craze sweeping schools across the country: Fidget Spinners (more…)

Are you a storyteller?

By Chris Ilcin, Account Superintendent, Sonnhalter

Brand/Content Marketing and all the other buzzwords are irrelevant.

I just finished reading a great article from the Virgin website.

But first an apology on behalf of the entire marketing industry…

We’re sorry for all the buzzwords. Really.

For years you’ve heard “content marketing” and “be your brand” and many other latest fads bandied about in meetings. In fact, at one previous employer, we had bingo sheets we’d take into the conference room to see how quickly we could achieve “product/end user integration,” “ROI” or anything else “at the end of the day.”

But really, all those words boil down to what the article highlights: Be a Storyteller (more…)

Branding or Branded?

By Chris Ilcin, Account Superintendent, Sonnhalter

Have your brand be who you arePepsi recently had a severe digital flogging for a tone-deaf ad featuring Kendall Jenner and the evidently crisis-averting powers of their soda. From late night hosts and live shows in New York to TV pundits and seemingly everyone with a social media account, the multi-national corporation has been the punchline of many a joke.

Obviously there are a lot of lessons to be learned and cautionary tales aplenty. But for me, the main lesson in all of this comes down to:

Don’t try to be your brand. Have your brand be who you are.

What’s that mean? (more…)

Reaching Contractors with Social Media

By Rachel Kerstetter, PR Architect, Sonnhalter

You probably set up a Facebook page and a Twitter account a few years ago when social media was the new shiny object for marketers. But now, your social media is anything but new and exciting … and it doesn’t help you reach contractors. You might be wondering if you’re wasting your time on these channels or if you’re better served by switching to the newest social trend.

As a longtime leader in Business-to-Tradesman marketing, we’ve developed 12 helpful tips that will help you use social media to effectively reach contractors.

In “12 Tips for Reaching Contractors with Social Media,” you’ll learn how to evaluate the social media you’re already using and pick the right avenues for connecting with contractors. The tip sheet shares best practices for social media in this niche space using content and integrating it into your overall marketing programs.

Download 12 Tips for Reaching Contractors with Social Media by signing up here.

Have You Hugged a Plumber Today?

By Rachel Kerstetter, PR Architect, Sonnhalter

eMail_Header_Plumber

Did you know that today is Hug a Plumber Day? (Sometimes called Plumber’s Day.) Often plumbers don’t receive the credit and fame that they deserve, unless they’re Mario and Luigi and trying to save a princess. The Super Mario Brothers are the most famous plumbers, and they live in a Nintendo game.

The reality is that without plumbers, our world would be far from sanitary or pleasant. As part of our team’s commitment to getting our hands dirty in our clients’ work, we’ve had the opportunity to see plumbers at work, we’ve used their tools and we’ve heard their stories; we know that they deserve to be honored, not just hugged, today.

Plumbers do so much more than unclog drains and fix leaky faucets. It’s plumbers who install the miles of piping that make hot, cold and process water and gas utilities possible.

Did you know…

(more…)

Mind the Gap: Making kids aware of manufacturing jobs

 

By Chris Ilcin, Account Superintendent, Sonnhalter

One of the things that always struck me about manufacturers is they generally don’t realize how cool their jobs really are. And I get why. You’ve been doing this your whole life, it pays the bills and it has its disappointments, headaches and setbacks.

But manufacturing made the modern world we live in possible. And the stuff you see as routine, through anyone else’s eyes is really, really cool.

Don’t believe me? Ask a bunch of middle school kids in Pennsylvania. (more…)

Manufacturers: Focus Content on Contractors, Not Your Brand

By John Sonnhalter, Rainmaker Journeyman, Sonnhalter

I think we all can agree that content marketing is playing a vital role in everyone’s overall marketing plans. Everyone wants lead generation and engagement, and to get both, you have to provide good content!

Many manufacturers focus more on their brand than trying to help solve their customers’ problems. Don’t focus on selling. Focus on solving. And more is not better. Give them good content not a lot of content.

According to recent article in Content marketing institute: (more…)

Sonnhalter Named a Chief Marketer 2017 B2B Top Shop

Sonnhalter joins the ranks as one of the country’s top business-to-business marketing agencies.

CLEVELAND – April 2017 – Sonnhalter, the leading B2T (business-to-tradesmen) marketing communications firm, was selected as one of Chief Marketer’s 2017 B2B Top Shops, a listing of the top B2B marketing agencies in the United States.

The agencies in B2B Top Shops are chosen by the editors of Chief Marketer, a leading publication focused on measurable marketing tactics published by Access Intelligence. In choosing agencies for inclusion, editors consider each shop’s depth of client work, creative acumen, analytical expertise and numerous other factors.

“It is an honor for Sonnhalter to be recognized by Chief Marketer for our work in leveraging some of the top brands within our business-to-trade niche,” said Matt Sonnhalter, vision architect at Sonnhalter. ”As an agency, we strive to remain steadfast in our efforts serving companies that target the professional tradesmen while incorporating new and creative tactics to be on the industry’s cutting edge.”

B2B Top Shops is an online searchable directory highlighting each agency’s core services and contact information, offering users a behind-the-scenes look at each shop’s culture and client work. B2B brands, vendors and marketers viewed this easy-to-use resource on ChiefMarketer.com almost 73,000 times in 2016.

About Chief Marketer

Chief Marketer, published by Access Intelligence, charts the customer journey from acquisition and engagement through conversion and retention. Via ChiefMarketer.com, print products, live events, awards programs and more, Chief Marketer offers data-driven intelligence, actionable insights, inspiring case studies and the latest technology trends to help marketers improve their campaigns and increase return on investment.

About Sonnhalter

Established in 1976, Sonnhalter is the leading B2T marketing communications firm to companies that target professional tradesmen in construction, industrial and MRO markets. Sonnhalter is located in the historic Brownell Building in the heart of downtown Cleveland. Sonnhalter’s brand identity highlights its expertise in marketing to the professional tradesmen. Its tagline, “Not Afraid To Get Our Hands Dirty,” promotes the employees’ willingness to roll up their sleeves and dig deep into clients’ businesses, also, it refers to the market it targets: the tradesmen who work with – and dirty – their hands every day. Sonnhalter developed the acronym “B2T,” which stands for “business-to-tradesmen” to capture the essence of its specialty. For more information, visit the company website at Sonnhalter.com.

Why aren’t sales leads followed up?

Today we have a guest post from Russ Hill, Founder of Ultimate Lead Systems.
How often have you heard sales people say leads generated by marketing are just “literature collectors, college professors, students, lookers or tire kickers?” Or, “I don’t have time for sales lead follow-up.” Or the sales manager who says, “I know my sales people are following up. They just don’t have time to provide feedback.”
Lead Follow-Up

All carrot no stick

I’ve worked with many companies over the years that made lead follow-up an imperative with their sales forces. In every case where it was required it yielded significant and profitable results reporting hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars in sales.

There is much discussion in internet groups about “aligning marketing and sales” and lead follow-up is a critical part of this discussion. (more…)