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Complete guide to lead generation for manufacturing companies

Bird's eye view of people sitting around a cluttered table discussing a project.

A steady influx of viable and high-quality leads makes manufacturing companies profitable. That said, traditional and in-person sales models are no longer cutting it, especially in today’s increasingly digital landscape.

Nowadays, online marketing strategies are the best way to generate industrial prospects for your manufacturing business.

But with so many moving parts, how do you develop an effective lead generation manufacturing plan on a budget? 

This guide will tell you everything you need to know about how lead generation for manufacturing works and what best practices you can implement.

Manufacturing lead generation

Some use the terms “lead generation” and “demand generation” interchangeably in the manufacturing industry.

But the two are not the same.

Lead generation manufacturing refers to contact acquisition or gathering basic information like a name, phone number, email address, and other data that helps build a customer profile.

In turn, demand generation is when you reach out to closer targets who have already expressed interest in your services.

You can manage your leads through CRM software that accommodates QuickBooks for manufacturing and wholesale.

What are the important requirements of lead generation for manufacturers?

There are many moving parts and critical requirements for lead generation manufacturing, such as offers and contact forms.

Before developing your marketing plan, familiarize yourself with the components of a robust growth strategy, including:

  • Offers: High-value resources and services like eBooks, white papers, digital brochures, discounts, and product demonstrations. Consumers are typically more willing to exchange contact information for something enticing, helpful, and intriguing.
  • Landing pages: Unlike regular web pages, landing pages contain information about a specific product, service, or offer. Advertising materials like social media posts or Google ads often lead back to landing pages.
  • Calls-to-action (CTA): A CTA link or button encourages site visitors to submit information. CTAs should be clear, concise, and persuasive.
  • Forms: The easiest and most direct way to collect potential leads is through information forms. You can get various information from this channel, such as names, numbers, emails, etc.
  • Website: To host the components listed above, you need your website to function. Since 72% of B2B buyers are tech-savvy, a responsive, easy-to-navigate, and informative website is essential to gathering qualified leads.

Top approaches of lead generation for manufacturers

Lead generation strategies that work for one manufacturer may not necessarily work for you.

That said, there are multiple approaches you can take to push industrial leads into your sales pipeline – just don’t forget to track your manufacturing workflows.

Below are some of the approaches you can consider.

Leverage existing customers

Contrary to what some may think, customer acquisition is more expensive than customer retention. In addition, engaging existing customers is often easier – after all, they’ve already done business with you.

Ask your existing customers for feedback and testimonials.

Word-of-mouth marketing is a powerful tactic; displaying positive reviews on your website can turn visitors into leads.

Organize events or actively participate in industry events

Being social, even and especially during your off hours, can go a long way in your networking strategy.

For example, participating in industry events can provide a platform for your business and thrust you into industry leadership. Even if you aren’t delivering a speech or presentation, your attendance alone increases your visibility in your industry.

Plus, you can connect with like-minded business individuals interested in your products and services. 

Use different CTAs

Just because you’ve succeeded with past CTAs doesn’t mean you should keep using the same one.

Varying your CTAs can boost online conversions by tapping into different kinds of customers.

Remember, no two prospective buyers are the same. Some might respond better to specific approaches in language and visuals.

Optimize your website to convert

For your website to appear on search engines, it must be optimized.

Fortunately, search engine optimization is a low-budget yet effective investment that can give you great returns and qualified leads.

While optimizing your website will take time, you can start by applying the following changes:

  • Clean your site navigation up. Make it easy for site visitors to find the information they need.
  • Use clear and concise information forms to develop a contact database or email list.
  • Upload valuable resources that site visitors are likely to download.

Occasionally give out freebies

Potential clients are much more responsive when there are incentives. If you can afford it, offer the occasional freebie, such as a consultation or eBook.

This is typically enough to encourage them to exchange information.

How to create engaging content offers for manufacturing lead generation

Now that you know the importance of lead generation efforts for manufacturing businesses, implement the following practices to get more and better leads.

Use the element of scarcity

Demand increases as supply decreases. This principle of supply and demand makes for an effective psychological marketing tactic.

Create limited-time or limited-quantity offers. Consumers may be more motivated to purchase your product because they don’t know when the offer will become unavailable. 

Keep track of your limited-offer stocks through work orders.

Leverage newsjacking

Newsjacking is when you leverage a recent headline or event to promote your products and services.

When implemented effectively, newsjacking is a clever and timely way to boost your brand’s popularity and credibility.

You can incorporate newsjacking into your content marketing efforts by following:

  • Social media feeds.
  • Google Trends updates.
  • News platforms.
  • Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds.
  • Influencers.

Popular trends in manufacturing that you can incorporate into your online lead generation manufacturing campaigns include artificial intelligence (AI), sustainability, and digital transformations.

Focus on creating an amazing title

A headline can say a lot about what you offer. As such, it should be clear, exciting, and informational enough that potential buyers want to click through to learn more.

You can use a shocking statistic or enticing benefit in your title. That said, don’t exaggerate and over-offer, especially if you can’t deliver on the statements you make.

Create offers for different buying stages

Thanks to the internet, manufacturing clients no longer call sales reps for information. Instead, many users prefer to do their research independently.

How do you shorten the sales cycle if potential customers aren’t interested in getting in touch?

Creating unique offers for each marketing stage is an excellent way to spark interest and push site visitors into converting. For instance, someone entering the buying cycle might be interested in an informational resource like a brochure or demonstration.

Further into your sales process, potential clients might be more interested in a discount or subscription.

Avoid corporate jargon

While professionalism in your sales team is a must, overstuffing your language with jargon is a surefire way to lose out on a future customer.

Avoid using vague buzzwords like “cutting-edge” or “next-level”, as they don’t offer real value.

Instead, highlight product features and discuss how doing business with your company can benefit potential B2B buyers.

Use high-value offer formats

No two offers are identical, and no two buyers look for the same thing. Use your marketing analytics to determine what your buyers want most.

But while content is the cornerstone of inbound marketing, what kind of content you produce can make or break your marketing efforts.

For example, some clients may be more interested in live webinars and long-form eBooks, while others have shorter attention spans and respond better to product demonstrations and quick presentations.

But if you’re reaching out to experienced manufacturing clients, providing something too simple isn’t going to cut it.

Key takeaways

As a manufacturing business, the best way to stay profitable is to turn viable leads into paying customers.

When developing an unbeatable lead generation strategy for your sales process, keep the following in mind:

  • Lead and demand generation are not the same. Consider which approach makes the most sense for your business.
  • The primary components of effective lead generation are an offer, landing page, call-to-action, form, and website.
  • While you can buy leads, the best way to increase your growth trajectory is to tap into their interests and values.
  • Vary your offers and calls to action. Some leads might prefer to download an eBook, while others might be more interested in attending a webinar.
  • Take advantage of industry news. Ride on trends to push high-value deals.

Are you looking for an easier way to track your leads?

Method:CRM unifies customer information in a single database, allowing you to follow up with leads and move them further down the funnel.

Lead generation for manufacturing FAQs

How do manufacturers generate leads?

The best way for manufacturers to generate leads is through digital marketing. Marketing strategies such as blogs, social media, newsjacking, and SEO can draw new customers in regularly.

What is the lead generation process?

The lead generation process involves attracting and moving customers through your sales pipeline. The goal is to create consumer interest in your specific products and services. Once you have a good set of leads (prospects), the next step is to turn them into paying customers by nurturing the relationship.

How can you improve sales lead generation?

You can take many steps to improve your lead and demand generation strategy, such as investing in SEO and paid advertisements or creating enticing content that brings visitors to your site. You can also network at events to generate interest and consistently adapt marketing efforts according to trends or consumer insights.

Start your free trial of Method:CRM today!

Image credit: Kindel Media via Pexels

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