Welcome back to Thursday Manufacturing Marketing Day at the SageRock Blog. “If it’s Thursday it’s Manufacturing Marketing Day.”
Last week I started talking about the survey I did at IMTS Where the Manufacturing Marketing Industry is today.
This week I want to show my findings about where manufacturing marketers are spending their time online.
The really great news is that every single manufacturer I talked to had a Web site.
That’s remarkable. Considering the overall business market.
an Ad-ology study found, 46 percent of small businesses surveyed said they did not have a website.
That same article went on to report from another study:
In the Discover study, 46 percent of respondents said it’s a myth that every company needs a website.
There are things in the world that are up for debate.
- Which are better: cats or dogs?
- PC or Mac?
- Big Mac or Whopper
But “should you have a website?”
That’s not a debatable question.
It doesn’t have to be the greatest website in the world. You can get a free one on WordPress.com. But you have to have one.
If I have to have a phone, you have to have a website.
But every single company I talked to said they had one. That’s awesome!
At that point, however, things started to get less definitive.
I asked if they were on:
- Google Plus
At no point did any of those properties reach the majority.
Most manufacturing companies were not on any of these properties.
This wasn’t a simple oversight.
Except for Google Plus, it wasn’t like people hadn’t heard of these properties. I will say that most people gave me blank stares when I asked them if they were on Google Plus.
People knew about these properties and most were confident that they had no place in their sales and marketing strategy.
The biggest comment I got was that they were a sales driven organization, the sale happened with one to one relationships and social media was not able to help that in any way.
Some comments I got as to why social media isn’t right for manufacturing included:
- High end capital machines are relationship based.
- Social does not apply to us.
- We make very large machines.
- We don’t have enough updates to justify it.
- In our field it is not so easy. We must visit and solve problems.
This was the majority of responses. But it certainly wasn’t the only opinion on social media.
A couple people I talked to were afraid of losing control of the message.
They weren’t sure they wanted people to comment publicly about their machines and service.
Some others were concerned that they wouldn’t have enough to say. They believed that if they were going to do social they needed to have a way of updating it on a regular basis.
And then a couple others said they were putting plans together for using social media.
This is how the percentages broke down:
- Do you have a website? Yes: 100%
- Are you on LinkedIn? Yes: 42% No: 57%
- Are you on Facebook? Yes: 39% No: 60%
- Are you on Twitter? Yes: 36% No: 63%
- Are you on Google Plus? Yes: 8% No: 91%
Of all the social sites, LinkedIn got the most favorable review.
People liked that it was a business-oriented site. They felt safer there. They also felt like their audience was there.
Facebook felt too personal. It was unclear how to use Twitter. And literally Google Plus was something most people had never heard of.
If I do this survey in 2 years at the next IMTS I’m very confident these numbers are going to increase.
Coming to terms with this stuff is a process. You simply have to work through it mentally to see how you might be able to use it.
That’s one of the purposes of this blog series. I want to show real world examples of how manufacturers are using the Web so that others can benefit. A rising tied lifts all boats.
All that said, while in the minority, there is a segment of the manufacturing world that totally gets this stuff. They are all over it. Like white on rice.
I had one marketer want to give every thing a 6 on a scale of 1 to 5. Social and the Web for her business are the absolute number one priority for their marketing.
Another marketing manager talked to me on the level of some of the most advanced social media theorists I have ever talked to. She said that she believes social is one to one to many. Social lets you simultaneously speak to one person while speaking to a large group. That’s profound. And correct.
Another person told me that social media gets them in the door so their sales people can then talk to them in greater detail.
I talked to a person that is deeply involved in content marketing. They have been printing their own informational magazine for years. The Web and social media is a perfect addition to that already existing strategy.
There were a group of people that were so incredibly excited about all of this. There was optimism and enthusiasm about all of this.
You could tell it was a cultural thing.
There were companies that were transparent and optimistic. And then there were companies that were closed and pessimistic.
Social media is a hard pill to swallow if you in the second group.
Next week I’ll talk about search in the world of manufacturing marketing. It’s a whole other fascinating topic.
Here is the next section of the infographic I’m creating on my survey findings. This is a visual representation of the stats I mentioned above: