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In late 2019, Vive Marketing launched the campaign, “It’s Vive O’Clock Somewhere”, to stimulate conversations about the current marketing challenges facing your company in a stress-free discussion. Inspired by Jimmy Buffet’s hit song, “It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere”, the campaign purpose is to remind everyone that there is never a bad time to start the marketing conversation. Vive O’Clock starts with you, and we know that everyone’s Vive O’Clock, or current challenge, is different. Whatever hurdles are in the way, Vive is ready to help. It all starts with a no strings attached, relaxed marketing chat over a morning coffee or an afternoon brew. When it’s Time for Vive, we’re just a conversation away.
With years of success driving and supporting marketing initiatives with manufacturers, especially in the plastics and metals industry segments, Vive has identified some common challenges you may be facing right now.
#1 – Absence of an Established Message
The first pitfall is one of the most straightforward, but also can be one of the most challenging aspects of marketing. Successful companies must find a way to differentiate their brand from competitors. This provides customers and prospects a clear idea of who your brand is and what you can provide them. It’s easy to create a standard message when familiar buzzwords are mixed, but familiar messages can fail to get through to an audience as these vague statements do not properly tell your story. Every company has a story, and to establish a unique message, companies need to embrace what they’re already doing differently or better to leverage their competitive advantage.
#2 – Having a Poor Website
Gone are the days of prospective clients calling up the sales team to learn more about a company. Today, your website frequently serves as the starting point for a customer, making your website more important than ever. The user’s first impression of your website is vital, as opinions are formed in just a fraction of a second. A website should function as an extension of your sales team, sending the right message to help customers find you for what you are known for. Strategically developing your website and creating consistent content are some of the ingredients needed to build a strong, high performing website.
#3 Out-of-Date Branding
Does your logo accurately reflect who your company is today? How about your company message? It’s easy for a brand to become stagnate, but an out-of-date logo, website or messaging can be signs of a non-advancing company. As mentioned above, websites are more important than ever, but beyond that, leaving an impression with a prospective customer is vital to the success of your brand. Updating your logo, messaging or website can serve as a great opportunity with past clients and provide the platform to grow with new customers.
#4 Expecting Immediate Gratification
Great marketing does not happen overnight; marketing is like a marathon. Trying to go out and run 26.2 miles sounds like a daunting task, but when broken down into smaller intervals, the task feels easier to manage. In marketing, it can be easy to look at the whole picture and be overwhelmed. To alleviate this, focus on celebrating small wins. By breaking down overall marketing goals into smaller milestones, you not only have a measurable way to track your success, but you can also make adjustments for winning strategies. As an added benefit of breaking down your marketing plan into measurable goals, it is easier to adjust your plan to keep your team motivated and highly integrated into the marketing strategy.
#5 Ignoring Social Media
Social Media, like a brand’s website, serves as an extension of the company. To ignore social media is simply missing out on another way to tell your brand story. It’s an essential tool in building awareness, establishing credibility and building brand loyalty. Social media also provides another way to reach your customer base, helping to keep your company top-of-mind. Prospective customers and employees use social media to try to get a better picture of the values and culture that your company has.
#6 Lack of Content Marketing
Producing content marketing is only becoming more important for brands. Content marketing includes deliverables, such as informational blogs, case studies, and company videos that highlight creative services. Great content marketing helps you target the right customer base, build an engaged audience and so much more. Content marketing is an effective way to become a knowledge leader in an industry, helping you to better connect with your audience. Successful content marketing starts with a well-established plan. A well-organized system for what type of content to make, when to create it and how it will be shared, keeps marketing teams accountable and allows plans to easily be adjusted.
#7 Unappealing Email Marketing
Tired of having your emails ignored by customers? Anyone can send an email, but getting your audience to open it is another story. Email marketing campaigns can contain excellent content, but if it never gets opened, it fails. Marketing plans need to provide multiple avenues to reach your audience. Email marketing allows for a digital touchpoint where you can tailor a message to your audience. Beyond being customizable, emails are easily measured and can be viewed on a mobile phone or in the office.
#8 Video without a Strategy
Did you know that video is the most popular form of content? When deciding how to best target customers and new prospects, video is a great option. As the current king of content marketing, the demand for video continues to grow. Today, people are watching more video than ever before. According to research done by Limelight, there was an average of six hours and 48 minutes spent by users watching online videos in 2019, representing an increase of more than 50 percent from 2016.
As the popularity of video continues to rise, your audience will continue to crave this form of content more than ever. On the marketing side, videos allow companies to make a quick connection with your current customers and prospects. Using video in marketing can help to leave a strong impression by visually highlighting what makes your company unique.
#9 Marketing to only New Customers
How are you nurturing the customer life cycle? It’s easy to focus on new and creative ways to market your brand to new customers. Marketing is much more than just targeting prospects; it is also about valuing existing customers. A devoted customer base is built on rewarding existing customers to create satisfied customers that will serve as brand ambassadors. These brand ambassadors can help your company by leaving strong reviews on google or by sharing their experiences through word of mouth.
#10 Trade shows without a Plan
Trade shows can provide leads and feel like a great investment or can feel like wasted time and resources for a limited return. How successful the trade show is for your company is based on how well you prepare. Trade shows provide invaluable face-to-face networking opportunities with prospective customers and existing clients. From strategy to booth design, there is a lot that goes into trade shows. To make a lasting impression at your next trade show, it starts with a drawn-out plan.
#11 Undefined Marketing Budget
Every marketing manager dreads it – setting their budget and asking, “What’s the best way to use this? How do I show results? Sorting through all the options can feel endless. Marketing budgets are necessary to understand your full scope of possibilities. Once the amount you want to spend on marketing is decided, the budget should be divided up into different avenues from advertising in publications, to trade shows, to SEO and paid advertising. Having an established budget and plan prevents wasting resources by spending more than you want to and allows for easy tracking for ROI.
#12 The Forgotten Marketing Plan
One of the easiest marketing pitfalls is simply not having a plan of attack. For almost every part of marketing, creating a plan is the first step to success. Sticking with that plan can also be a challenge. There are countless situations where employees have to wear multiple “hats” in the organization, causing them to have to neglect a plan. Without a plan, it is impossible to track progress and makes accountability a challenge.
Is it Time for Vive O’Clock Yet?
At Vive we want to take the stress out of marketing. Your Vive O’Clock discussion could be about a tired logo that needs to be updated, how to start your new website project or to learn about new sales tools to increase buyer awareness of your company’s why – the purpose that makes your company and its offerings unique. If your marketing strategy feels like it’s lacking, join us for a friendly conversation, any time of the day.
When you’re ready to chat with the experts in marketing for manufacturing, we’re just an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or call away (414-727-VIVE). It’s Vive O’Clock Somewhere!