The Repp Group Blog- web-based strategies to increase sales leads for industrial companies
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6 Justifications to Outsource Your Industrial Content Marketing

04/29/16 - Tom Repp

It seems as if all you hear about in industrial marketing departments is, “We have to get involved with content marketing…Joe Competitor is eating our lunch with some great content on his website”.  (i.e. content marketing: blogs, white papers, ebooks, webinars, podcasts, etc.)

OK…so you assume that Joe Competitor is taking some of your online exposure and leads. It is time to get serious about content marketing or inbound marketing for industrial, as some call it.

Here is why you should outsource your industrial content marketing:

Tags: Content Marketing, inbound marketing for industrial, Industrial branding

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Content Marketing for Industrial: How NOT to Do It

04/27/16 - Tom Repp

I was recently called into to consult with a mid-size manufacturer in Indiana. The President was an old high school basketball teammate and he wanted advice on the best way to generate more traffic and leads from their website. He simply felt the opportunity for lead generation had passed his company by when it came to leveraging the power of the web.

He was right.

Their business was doing well and they had some unique differentiating features for their industrial product, so I viewed this as an excellent opportunity. It was easy to see that their products needed a brand theme or story that would resonate differences in the marketplace.

I then met the new marketing manager that was hell-bent on firing up an aggressive content marketing campaign. The President was also hell-bent on using a local web developer to freshen up their website. Just like his impatience on the basketball court, he demanded that a new website be finished in one month.

The marketing manager had read lots of content on the web about content marketing for industrial (…Or, as some call it, inbound marketing for industrial).  He devoured much of the content by HubSpot about content marketing. (HubSpot’s founder, Brian Halligan, was the originator of the term “inbound marketing”). The marketing manager actually found my blog because of my HubSpot certification and my blog’s focus on industrial internet marketing,

The marketing manager also attended Content Marketing World this past September in Cleveland. He was fired up and now had a shiny new toy. The problem was, he had no experience deploying a content campaign and had not read the entire instruction manual.

Tags: Content Marketing, industrial marketing strategy, Inbound Marketing

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Digital B2B Lead Generation for Industrial Takes Guts

04/26/16 - Tom Repp

I was talking to the VP of large industrial supplier in West Michigan about the digital channel for B2B lead generation.  My passion was bubbling over and I was expanding on the moat he could build around his business if he really embraces this idea of content or inbound marketing for industrial. I knew he trusted me, but he was a little like the deer in the headlights as I expounded on the benefits of the web and content marketing.   

He retorted, “This whole industrial content marketing thing is going to take a lot of work, isn’t it Tom? We don’t have the right resources or staff to compete in this new world of content marketing for industrial. If we do this…it is going to take a lot of guts, isn’t it?”

Then it struck me.

It really does take a lot of guts to change the way you have gone to market for years…especially when it worked so well for years. For the industrial marketer there are so many unknowns when it comes to the brave new world of content or inbound marketing.

I live with this stuff every day.  I see it work, and I think it is a no brainer for industrial companies to embrace a B2B lead generation machine.

But, then I need to put myself in the VPs' shoes.

Tags: Content Marketing, B2B Lead Generation

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Ad-blockers, Changes Everything for Industrial Content Marketing

04/14/16 - Tom Repp

I am sure you are aware there is a Presidential campaign going on…and the cartels on both sides of the aisle are being taken to the woodshed. Let’s just be blunt.  People are really pissed off.

This holds true with your industrial buyer as well.

Just as in the political arena, there is a popular rebellion against traditional advertising and marketing. If you have not noticed, your industrial buyer is now in control.

Ad-blocking software is the most recent sanction against established, traditional industrial advertising & marketing…along with call screening, DVRs, streaming video, curated content, browser extensions…and the list goes on.

The web has let the genie out of the bottle and your industrial buyer is now in control. There is no going back.

Let me make a prediction concerning industrial content marketing.

Tags: industrial content marketing

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Content Marketing’s Bad Stats-Good News for Industrial?

03/14/16 - Tom Repp

I was talking the President of a local B2B manufacturer the other day.  He cited some statistics he read about the effectiveness of content marketing in the B2B space. He said, “Tom, I noticed in a marketing blog that engagement rates for content are really dropping. Does that dampen your enthusiasm for content marketing for industrial?”

My response, “To the contrary.  Tell you what, I have some thoughts about that issue and let me post a blog about that subject this coming week.”

So…here goes.

True, there are some dismal stats concerning B2B content marketing & content marketing for industrial that takes the bloom off  the rose. For example TrackMaven tells us that we are producing more content than ever, but engagement has fallen dramatically.

Content Marketing Institute tells us in 2016-B2B Manufacturing Content Marketing that overall effectiveness of content marketing has lowered this past year.

Here is why I think these stats spell opportunity for the the savvy industrial marketer. My conclusions are based on my own opinions, anecdotal evidence from my knowledge in the industry and research from some of the resources cited above.

Tags: industrial content marketing

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For B2B Lead Generation…It Is ALL SYSTEMS GO

03/11/16 - Tom Repp

Every now and then, I need to participate in a shameless plug and demonstrate some of the work we are doing on behalf of our customers. We are changing the face of industrial marketing by creating a web-based, growth-driven, lead generating machines.

At The Repp Group, we recently launched a new website for HECO Industrial Services at www.hecoinc.com.  Allow me to toot HECO’s horn…and ours. 

First, with help from www.maxwellandmiller.com, we pumped up the HECO brand theme.

After exhaustive interviews with the owners, engineers and the sales group, we knew we had to distance HECO from the typical industrial supplier.  HECO sells much more than electric motors. They provide piece of mind on the plant floor by optimizing the performance of the entire electric motor-driven powertrain.

As I have written in several blog posts, industrial suppliers have a wealth of content stuck in their file cabinets and banker boxes.  It was no different at HECO. Continuing our interviews, we found plenty of content in their file cabinets to build a strong brand case...and years’ worth of blog posts. We also found plenty of great content in HECO’s mental “file cabinets”.

Tags: industrial marketing strategy, B2B Lead Generation

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Google’s RankBrain: Another Gift for Industrial Marketers

01/05/16 - Tom Repp

Most industrial marketers do not embrace SEO as they should (I know...I have been helping them for 14 years), let alone Google’s new algorithm called RankBrain.

RankBrain…sounds intimidating doesn’t it?

RankBrain is just another algorithm update from Google that improves the search experience for its users.  RankBrain is “machine-learning artificial intelligence technology” that will continue to deliver improved search results, satisfying your industrial customer’s need for answers to their questions. The “machine-learning” part of the algorithm is the new technology Google is promoting.

Google tells us that RankBrain is the “third-most” important signal contributing to page rank. Amazingly Google will not tell us the first two.  Silly Google.  

My guess is, links (i.e. “votes” for your webpages) remain the most important signal and the actual words you use in your content (i.e. webpages, white papers, e-books) are the second most important signal for Google.

What does all this mean for the industrial internet marketing?

Tags: Content Marketing, industrial marketing strategy, Inbound Marketing

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Marketing Automation for Industrial: Holy Grail or Fail?

01/04/16 - Tom Repp

Inbound marketing on a marketing automation platform has become a hot topic within industrial marketing departments. Inquisitive & perceptive industrial marketers want to know the real story behind marketing automation. Is it the holy grail of marketing, as some say? On the other hand, is it a marketing boondoggle?

While taking a break from my grandkids over the Holidays I noticed this report from my favorite marketing automation provider, HubSpot, in the Business 2 Community blog. This report sheds some light on the nagging questions.

There is tons of marketing automation platforms out there. Knock yourself out if you want to research them.  In a recent video, Marcus Sheridan, marketing automation evangelist, provides a  holstic view of marketing automation, Is HubSpot and Marketing Automation Right for Your Business?  I believe Marcus’ assignments are just as valid for industrial as any sector.

In my mind, HubSpot provides the best experience and results for the small to mid-size industrial market, where my practice focuses. The State of Inbound reports in the past have been spot-on in terms of my experience on the ground.

Tags: industrial marketing strategy, Inbound Marketing, marketing automation

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6 Reasons Industrial Sales Should Beg for Inbound Marketing

12/17/15 - Tom Repp

Your best salespeople have mastered the art of overcoming rejection. Still…there is nothing worse than meeting a potential customer that is lethargic and aloof towards you and your product.  Your best attempts at “features & benefits” and summoning your most charming quips fail to break the ice.

…Just plain uncomfortable and gets very old after hundreds of sales calls.

Now, let me turn the tables with a personal story that highlights the benefits of inbound/content marketing for your sales group.

Almost three years ago, the President of a manufacturing company in Michigan who I knew me personally introduced me to his marketing team. Like a good sales rep, I was ready with the obligatory business card.  As we exchanged greetings and biz cards, two out of three chimed in with, “Oh, we don’t need that (the business card) we read your blog and your LinkedIn profile.

WHAM!  Paradigm shift.

That is one big reason your industrial marketing team should be producing content. I was introduced as a trusted consultant, instead just another charming salesperson.

Tags: Content Marketing, industrial marketing strategy, B2B Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing

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Why I Love…BORING…Industrial Marketing

12/07/15 - Tom Repp

Let’s face it, custom hydraulic manifolds, industrial chillers, asynchronous electric motors, vendor managed inventories and cnc prototypes are boring.

In the age of search, mobile and social, it is damn hard to compete with Donald Trump, pop culture, the latest hit TV show or the latest version of the Snuggie. 

As an industrial marketer…that is the point.

You do not have to compete with the constant barrage of unwanted ads, current events or freak shows that parade across our digital tethers. Your industrial marketing strategy can be really boring. 

See…the industrial buyer is different. The industrial buyer is craving…BORING…information that can make his life easier. The, engineer-type, industrial buyer is annoyed as hell with all the unsolicited media that disrupts his day.

Marketing disrupts us constantly…and we are sick of it. Especially, since we can find anything we want on an as-needed basis.

Tags: Content Marketing, industrial marketing strategy, B2B Lead Generation

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