Traditional Marketing is Alive and Well for Industrial Companies

Despite all the buzz about digital marketing and proof of results, manufacturers, engineering and industrial companies continue to use traditional marketing tactics such as trade shows, print ads and telemarketing.

According to the 2013 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks–North America: CMI/MarketingProfs report, 67% of the 1,416 B2B Marketers surveyed, continue to rate in-person events as the most effective marketing tactic they use.

It would be easy to dismiss the continued use of traditional marketing by saying decision makers at industrial companies are resistant to change and they just don’t want to hear anything about current best practices in online marketing. While true to some extent, it doesn’t tell the complete story in my experience.

I have found owners and executives at industrial companies to be sharp business people who wouldn’t continue to spend good money on marketing tactics if they weren’t producing the desired results.

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When the Going Gets Tough, B2B Marketers…

…fall back on tried-and-true marketing tactics that they have relied on for years. In the current tough economy, cutting edge and innovative marketing is taking a back seat to proven strategies for lead generation.

B2B companies are spending more of their marketing budgets on channels such as trade shows, Website design, management and optimization and e-mail marketing. Those three marketing channels received the largest allocation of the budget. The trend holds true across the board even though the mix may be different depending on the size of a B2B company.

Smaller companies, those with less than 100 employees, tend to spend more on digital marketing tactics like Website design, e-mail marketing as well as traditional outbound marketing channels like direct mail. Not surprisingly, they tend to spend less on trade shows.

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