Only 6% of distributors are happy with the results of their marketing efforts and the rest are just plain frustrated. In this episode, Jonathan Bein, from Real Results Marketing joins us to talk about his research survey on distributor marketing. Learn what is working and which areas distributor leaders need to focus on in 2019 to grow their market share.
What Are The Top Distributor Marketers Doing to Get Big Results?
Distributors have a lot working against them when it comes to marketing their brand in today's economy. They have to deal with 3 - 4 generations of buyers with distinctly different preferences when it comes to selecting and purchasing industrial equipment. On top of that, the need for an omni-channel marketing approach that utilizes print, in-person, and digital strategies comes at an expense that most traditional distributors simply are not accustomed to paying. The good news is that the difference between the low and high performers may not be as great as you might think.
You Need to Understand Your Unique Customer Mix
Thinking about going all-in on sophisticated digital marketing and a flashy new website? Think again. Your customers may not care about your digital investments if they are predominantly Gen-X or Baby Boomers. They might want more customization, more face time, and traditional buying channels. On the other hand, the danger of not adapting to a changing buying demographic could spell disaster for your business. "The cost of getting this wrong is high", says Jonathan Bein. The only way to know for sure what your customers want is to ask them. Sign up for Survey Monkey and ask your customers the hard questions about how they want to select and purchase equipment from you. If you're not doing this at least once a year, you are essentially flying blind.
Every customer base is a snowflake. It's unique!
Customer Segmentation Can Set You Apart From the Competition
Once you figure out who your customers are and what they want, the best thing you can do is utilize that data to send highly targeted and relevant content. Outbound email marketing is a popular tool, with a potential ROI of 400%, but the high performers are not just "blasting" their contact list. They are being very strategic about the messages, content, and offers they send their customers. This leads to cross-selling, earning a larger share of wallet, and customer loyalty. Use your CRM in conjunction with an email automation tool to deliver a wonderful experience for your customers.
The big companies get this, and the biggest gorilla of all, Amazon, nails this. They get you very relevant content.
The Difference Between Moderate and High Performers is Frequency and Intensity
We're so afraid of marketing our business and communicating with our customers because we might come across as "pushy" or "spammy", but Jonathan's research is clear. The biggest difference between the low to moderate performers and the 6% that nail it isn't some elaborate strategy; it's good old fashioned hard word. They're sending emails, publishing content, and engaging on social media every week - sometimes every day - and THAT is why they are at the top and you're not.
Our research indicates over and over again; your customers want to hear from you more than you know.
I really enjoyed this conversation with Jonathan. I am a regular reader and subscriber of his blog and content at Real Results Marketing. I referred distributors and manufacturers alike in our industry to Jonathan when they need an outside perspective to help develop market strategy or execute voice-of-the-customer research.
Learn more from Jonathan Bein --
- Real Results Insights (articles)
- Real Results Research which includes the 2018 State of Distributor Marketing and 2018 State of eCommerce in Distribution
I'm proud to say that we're also doing our part to help small-to-medium distributors do just what Jonathan prescribes in his findings. We offer a unique omni-channel platform that enables distributors to build unlimited custom product catalogs, print those catalogs, offer an eCommerce store, and connect marketing automation software for email marketing, social media, and content creation. Schedule a consultation with me to learn more.
Learn the key principals for driving traffic, converting visitors, and growing your eCommerce channel by watching our FREE video series "Industrial Marketing 101".