Generating leads is always the central theme in my daily conversations with manufacturing, engineering and industrial companies. However, a qualified lead means different things to different people and it is rare for me to find too many of these companies to have a clear definition of what a lead means to them.
Truth be told, lead generation is a catchall for “We want our phones to ring.”
I wish it were that easy. Then again, I had better be careful about what I wish for because if it were that easy, my clients wouldn’t need my help solving their industrial lead generation problems.
Let me make it clear from the outset, this post is not about sales vs. marketing. I firmly believe that complex industrial sales require both sales and marketing to work together. I advise my clients to embrace that philosophy and not to think of industrial marketing as mere sales support.
How can digital marketing help create more qualified opportunities for industrial sales?
For answers to that question, let me direct you to some of my past articles posted here that will give you more insights.
- Read Inbound Marketing Must Set the Table for Industrial Sales for ideas on how to get sales and marketing to work together
- Read “SAL is the Glue that Binds Sales and Marketing in Lead Generation” to understand the difference between a Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) and a Sales Qualified Lead (SQL)
- Read “Use Content Marketing to Manage Industrial Sales Funnels” for statistics and study findings on the challenges faced by other manufacturers and B2B companies
- Read “The Real Value of Content Marketing for Industrial Companies” for three common scenarios in industrial sales
- Read “Industrial Content Marketing with Purpose” for helping your site visitors to take action
- Read “Industrial Content Marketing is Not Just for SEO” to understand why getting traffic is only the first step
- Read “Why a Content BOM is Crucial to a Successful Industrial Web Design” to understand the importance of planning content for a site redesign
Based on my 25 years of hands-on experience with industrial marketing for lead generation, I can also tell you with certainty that digital marketing cannot do it all. In my opinion, one cannot remove the human element from industrial sales. Only a salesperson can provide that crucial human touch. I call it the critical “last mile service.” This is why phone conversations are critical to the success of industrial sales.
Make sure your digital marketing is based on a well-planned strategy and not just a series of hit-or-miss marketing tactics if you want your phones to ring.
Are you a manufacturer, a distributor or an engineering services company? Share your challenges and successes using digital marketing for lead generation and increasing sales.