Manufacturing marketers are faced with tough challenges when it comes to finding the best ways to promote their companies. While consumer marketing is tricky enough, B2B digital marketing is a completely different ballgame that requires a great deal of planning, research, and collaboration. It can be a lot to take on, which is a major reason that the industry as a whole is overwhelmingly reluctant to embracing new digital marketing tactics and technologies. However, for the sake of your manufacturing business, this is simply not a road you ought to take.
To stay in line with industry trends, many manufacturing marketers are wisely partnering with agencies to develop and implement effective manufacturing marketing strategies. And still, many others are hesitant to do so for a number of reasons. As one of those agencies, we hear a lot of these types of apprehensions and we figured we’d take a minute to clear up a few of the more common ones.
Myth #1: They only work with B2C companies
We’ll go as far as to say that many agencies have specific industries or markets in which they specialize, but very rarely are they exclusive to those client clusters. If there is an agency out there who shuns the idea of working with a B2C client, we haven’t found it yet. The truth is, an established agency will be versed in marketing tactics for a range of industries, including manufacturing. And if they’re not, they should be upfront about that. But just to be safe, we suggest asking to see a few case studies and client reviews before jumping too far in.
Myth #2: An agency will want to change everything
A good agency shouldn’t come in with the intention to change everything. They should only look at changing what can be improved. If there’s a facet to your existing manufacturing marketing plan that is performing exactly as you want it to and there’s absolutely no room for improvement, then we’ll leave it alone. Manufacturers should know as well as anyone that if something’s not broke, don’t fix it.
Myth #3: We’ll lose control of our website
We hear this one a lot. Agencies shouldn’t ask that you relinquish control of everything digital. This is one ball that should stay in your court as much or as little as you prefer. For example, we have clients for whom we do a few website updates and others for whom we do every single update and proactively perform maintenance on their websites (per their request, of course). For our clients, we work closely to make sure that they’re comfortable with the division of responsibility, but it’s never our goal to steal away aspects of your online presence from your in-house marketing team.
Myth #4: We still have to do all of the work
Along those same lines, we do commit a lot of time and effort into every manufacturing project we take on. Speaking to our company specifically, most of the work is behind the scenes, but a lot of it will be more collaborative and will require back and forth emails, conference calls, interviews, and meetings between your team and ours. At times it might seem like you’re pulling a disproportionate amount of the weight, but rest assured that we are taking every step necessary to produce the best product we are able.
Myth #5: They won’t understand what we do
Okay, there’s actually a bit of truth to this one. Agencies may not understand your business, your products, your missions, etc. right off the bat. That’s why a good agency will take time to interview, research and immerse themselves into what makes your company stand out before getting too far in. Be prepared for a number of brainstorming and Q&A sessions in the early stages. We might not know the ins and the outs of your manufacturing business in the beginning as well as you do, but with your cooperation, we’ll keep working at it until we do so we can deliver on those, “out of the box ideas.”
Myth #6: They’re too expensive
Okay, there are a lot of variables to this one and honestly, we can only speak for ourselves on this particular issue. We keep our rates fair and comparable to other agencies in our area, but there’s more to it than just that. There’s not a one-size-fits-all package that works for every manufacturing company, so before we get started, we’ll discuss with you your plans and your budget so we can figure out how to assist most effectively. We’ll quote you some options and give you an itemized list of what each feature or service will cost. If it’s not what you’re thinking, we’ll keep working until it is.
Myth #7: They are a threat to our internal marketing team
We want to work collaboratively with your team so that we can all succeed together. We’re going to rely on your expertise from start to finish in order to produce a superb product. Your partnership is vital to our process and we’ll never do anything to discredit or “threaten” that relationship.