Manufacturers Shifting Marketing Dollars

Everyone is trying to get the most out of what they’re spending this year and the manufacturing sector is no exception. With B-to-B leads from traditional sources slowing down, marketers are looking for other avenues. Many are shifting dollars to online options as they are less expensive and easily measurable.

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According to a recent report from Global Spec, Trends in Industrial Marketing 2009: How Manufacturers are Marketing Today, the number-one focus of marketers is to keep the customers they have and generate new high quality leads. Marketers are under pressure to choose programs that are measurable. So where is the money coming from? Many industrial marketers are reducing trade shows and print ads. 29% of respondents said they already are spending more than half of their budget online. 48% said online will account for a bigger proportion of their budgets for the balance of ’09.

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The top 3 online marketing channels for companies are:

  • online directories/web sites
  • e-marketing using in-house lists
  • SEO

It looks like online and digital are going to become an ever-increasing portion of marketing budgets moving forward. Forrester Research predicts that by 2014,  interactive spending will hit 55 billion ( pproximately 21% of total marketing spends). The Forrester study also indicated that much of the interactive dollars will come out of traditional spends.

What’s your feeling on this subject? Are you doing more online? I’d like to hear your thoughts.


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  1. Richard Clark Marketing Blog

    Good post and I agree with the majority of points raised.

    The only element I am unsure of (and maybe it peculiar to the UK), is whether or not Online Advertising is less expensive thanall other channels.

    With the rise of online as a channel for marketing departments – media inflation has kicked in and online display can become a very expensive channel. The major benefit is obviously the fact you can measure and optimise online as you go.

  2. PAblo Rosas

    We are a manufacturing company in Mexico that serves the small electrical distributors and also contractors. What in your opinion could be a good decition to enter into the online marketing considering that most of our costumers are kind of old-school and do not use the internet very much.

    Thank you for your comments¡

    • tradesmeninsights

      From an online view I’d probably use e-mails as a primary vehicle. Do you only serve the Mexican market? Are there local Electrical Contractors associations you can get involved in or distributor groups? These would be good grass root ways of building relationships with both contractors ans distribution.

  3. JGibson

    Your article caught my eye and after reading, I wanted to share how a manufacturing client utilized our direct mail products. His dealers were not effectively advertising his products (power generators), so he decided to be more proactive and drive leads and sales by targeting specific markets with shared mail with a pre-hurricane message, and utilizing trigger events such as ice storms to drop solo mail to select households in those areas experiencing power outages. His leads and sales are doing phenomenally well.
    Direct mail is powerful in that it creates desire and action; it works well with other media to drive website traffic. While online and social media have the ears of the marketing world right now, marketers will be better served by figuring how to best integrate it with other media and reach their consumers when and where they’re receptive, and provide them with options to get information and for communicating.

    • tradesmeninsights

      Thanks for your thoughts. Social isn’t a silver bullet that will solve all your marketing issues. It should be used with other marketing tools and DM is a good one. The key is the list.Timing and the message are also important.

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