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A Look at How Manufacturers Emphasize Marketing

The most recognized brands in the world spend billions of dollars every year on their marketing efforts. You can imagine that they’re not executing by chance without a plan; they know exactly what those dollars will bring them in return. These companies view marketing as a matter of survival, not theory.

On the flip side, some companies believe marketing is not necessary to incorporate into a business plan because business is growing and everyone’s staying busy, so why bother with the expense and hassle? This is the wrong mindset.

Somewhere in the middle is where manufacturers need to position their marketing strategy. Marketing is like food, sustained nourishment that navigates your business to meet growth objectives and keeps you there. Ongoing marketing secures your company’s future.

Teresa Schell, president/owner of Vive (a marketing firm exclusively for the plastics industry), recently spoke at the Plastics News Executive Forum on the topic of marketing. She illustrated results of an online survey from plastic processors throughout the United States that evaluated the dedication (or lack of) their companies invest toward marketing initiatives.

An interesting discovery from the survey was the lack of unique differentiators that plastic processors are using to position themselves in the marketplace. Too many companies highlight customer service, high quality parts or 100 percent on-time delivery as a selling point that sets them apart from other plastic processors. Unfortunately, these are not differentiators but a given. Without a clearly defined differentiator, there is no branding, which ultimately leads to no increased profitability.

Since the manufacturing process is similar among each business, a unique focus could be on the company’s innovation or commitment to new technology that allows production to hit the market sooner. Not all manufacturers maintain the same speed of technology infusion on their operational floor.

In the survey, most plastic processors rated their company a four (with a top score of five) for sales and marketing alignment. The two departments must speak the same message, be in sync with what an ideal customer looks like and measure frequently to make necessary changes to the marketing plan. Many companies utilize one champion with the title, Sales and Marketing, but clearly these two responsibilities and objectives are different enough to warrant the roles of two people working together on the same goal.

The survey also revealed that tradeshow exposure continues to be a concentrated area of marketing dollars. The most commonly attended and exhibited tradeshows are MD&M, PackExpo and NPE. The approach to building brand awareness to a targeted audience is proven with a formal tradeshow strategy, often times with a positive return on investment. However, tradeshow ROI does not have to be measured on just new sales, but by the effectiveness of announcing a new capability or the outreach of communication via social media channels.

A marketing strategy will successfully promote and grow your business. A robust marketing plan will help you answer key questions about your business: How will you position your company in the marketplace? How will you differentiate from your competitors? How will you reach your customers? What are your sales goals? Awareness to marketing strategies should be aligned with business goals. Continuous attention, much like continuous food nourishment, toward marketing will help manufacturers strengthen their brand identity and bottom line.

Top 5 Reasons You Should Be Blogging

The benefits of blogging go far and beyond what a single blog post can explain. It is, without a doubt, a worthwhile venture that can lead you and your company to new heights. Below you’ll find five tips to get the juices flowing and give you ammunition for backing up your desire for a company blog.

Boost Traffic

An immediate benefit for the creation of a company blog is the increase in traffic to your website. If you host your blog via an external platform such as WordPress, be sure to have several ways for readers to link back to your website. The blog header is a great place to mimic the style of your homepage, with clickable buttons that drive traffic back to your company site. You can also nudge people to your site via clever calls-to-action within paragraphs and at the end of each post.

However, a sure-fire way of driving traffic to your site is to actually host the blog on a landing page within your website. Readers already have easy access to your other core messages and will be drawn to become more informed about your company’s capabilities and differentiators. Keep in mind that each blog post you create is yet another page that is indexed within Google, which allows for an increased opportunity to show up on the first page of a Google search.

Become a Thought Leader

With each post written you further establish your niche and position yourself as a thought leader in your industry. When posts are filled with reliable and insightful information, readers will frequent your blog in search of more answers to their burning questions. Once your knowledge and expertise is firmly established in the minds of your audience, the chance of converting prospects to customers is greater.

Create a Back-and-Forth

Blogs, much like social media, are an essential tool for becoming more connected to your audience. By their nature, websites are a one-way communication channel. Blogs allow for the opportunity to actively engage in a dialogue with customers and others in the manufacturing world.

Cultivate Content

To appear more often in top pages, blogs should consist of original, relevant content that incorporates key words unique to your business. As stated above, each blog post is catalogued as a separate page in search engines, such as Google. Search engines are becoming smarter by the minute and can decipher between quality content and promotional “mumbo jumbo.” Blog posts can also be recycled; it is vital to take advantage of different social media channels by posting the link to your blog multiple times throughout a three or four week span, each time using different, intriguing title lines to entice readers to click.

Build Brand Awareness

Finally, a company blog is an excellent way to increase brand awareness! The more a prospective customer reads your content, the more they’ll associate your brand with expertise and quality. Although the time commitment needed to maintain a quality blog is a factor to consider, the benefits far outweigh the costs. Just remember: repurpose your content and position yourself as an expert in the industry. The possibilities are endless!

Vive, LLC Introduces Holiday Food Drive Challenge

Milwaukee, WI (November 25, 2014) – In support of The Hunger Taskforce of Milwaukee, Vive, LLC – a marketing firm located on the sixth floor of the Phoenix Building, will host a Holiday Food Drive Challenge for all tenants December 1 through December 23, 2014.

vive-food-driveThe Hunger Taskforce asks for the community’s assistance in collecting food items and monetary donations in order to provide food for families in need. https://www.hungertaskforce.org/

The team at Vive is asking for your assistance in reaching their goal of collecting 250lbs (one large box) of canned food/and or non-perishable items during the month of December.

Food for donation can be dropped off at Vive’s front entrance, Monday-Friday from 8am – 5pm and must be received by Tuesday, December 23rd.

All food received will be delivered to The Hunger Taskforce to ensure families in our community enjoy a holiday meal. Popular items include:

  • Juice
  • Coffee/tea
  • Cereal/oatmeal
  • Canned ham
  • Cornbread/bread/muffin mix
  • Gravy packets/canned gravy
  • Stuffing
  • Sweet potatoes/yams
  • Green beans
  • Peas
  • Mixed vegetables
  • Corn
  • Cranberry sauce
  • Shelf-stable milk
  • Pudding boxes
  • Macaroni
  • Mixed fruit
  • Applesauce

This Holiday Food Drive Challenge provides an opportunity for our business community to help fight domestic hunger. Thank you for your support and participation.

Letter from the President: Strategic Marketing Partners is Now Vive

Your smile is your logo, your personality is your business card, and how you leave others feeling after having an experience with you becomes your trademark. 

As the President and Owner of Vive, formerly Strategic Marketing Partners, I am proud of the role my business plays in helping multiple plastic processors, plastic service providers and mold builders throughout the U.S. build their brand identity with robust marketing plans and solid communication strategies. parental guidance I found this to be an opportune time to introduce similar strategies for my business by updating its brand identity.

When a company evolves their image, it’s a true representation of the company’s commitment to reinventing itself, most of the time, to look more modern and illustrate their progression through time. Our name change does not reflect a shift in our offerings or value proposition. Rather, the name change to Vive more accurately identifies who we have become, which is a team focused on being Victorious, Innovative, Vibrant and Enduring.

Additionally, the name represents the core of our business, which is to work with established companies to revive their brand identity and marketing strategies. Vive is represented by the silver “V” in our logo, while the two purple “V’s” signify the distinct union with our clients and marketing partners to assure a successful collaboration. We deliver the same marketing support and are dedicated to building lasting relationships with professionals in the plastics and mold building industries.

I am thankful to those who have placed their fingerprint on this successful organization, which has provided a valuable resource for small to mid-size companies to help grow their businesses. With this identity change, I pledge our commitment to stay the course as your strategic marketing partner. The company will continue under my sole ownership, at the same location in the scenic Third Ward of Milwaukee’s lakefront, and operate in its current structure with a fabulous team of marketing professionals.

Thank you for celebrating this time in history with us!

Walking the Talk at MAPP Benchmarking and Best Practices Conference

On October 15-17, 2014, an estimated 450 plastic professionals will descend on Indianapolis to attend the MAPP Benchmarking and Best Practices Conference. This must-attend event is where attendees will learn best practices, strategies, and tactics to further their plastics manufacturing businesses.

For Vive, this is our time to walk the talk and participate in this leading industry event to:

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Communicate our offering and what stands us apart from other marketers
  • Network with the industry
  • Introduce ourselves to our target market
  • Foster current relationships with clients.

Just like other marketing initiatives, sponsoring/exhibiting at a tradeshow is not something you do “just because.” Tradeshows are a key marketing strategy that supports brand management and business growth. To get the most of your tradeshow participation, a good plan is needed. earth map . Identify your objectives and goals. Then, be sure your pre-show, onsite, and post-show activities helps to achieve them. For example, brand awareness is a main objective of Vive at the MAPP Benchmarking and Best Practices Conference because of our recent rebrand that included a new name, logo and website. Our booth experience is planned to be a memorable and engaging experience.

Visit us in Booth 33 at the MAPP Conference to learn more on tradeshow strategy, watch for show updates on our Facebook and Twitter accounts and look for a follow-up blog on our show experience.