How To Maximize Sales To Distributors in the Manufacturing Industry

August 29, 2019 |   3 minute read


How To Maximize Sales To Distributors in the Manufacturing Industry
Sales in the manufacturing sector are unique. You are not selling to individuals, but to specific distributors who in turn get your product into the hands of stores and consumers. The challenge here is that you now have multiple people to appeal to with each product.

Unique Challenges for Growth in the Manufacturing Industry

  1. Labour Shortages: Over the next decade, retiring baby boomers will create 4.6 million jobs in the manufacturing industry. And of those, 2.4 million jobs are expected to go unfilled.
  2. Rapidly Changing Technology: It can feel next to impossible to stay on top of the latest trends. Currently, there are over 3.6 billion connected devices used to perform daily tasks. This presents a unique challenge because much of the technology that future employees will be trained on isn’t even created yet.
  3. Global Competition: In a connected world, companies aren’t just competing with companies in the next city, but all over the globe. In order to stay competitive, the manufacturing sector must ensure their products include advanced technologies. By 2020, Forbes predicts 47% of all products will be smart and connected.
  4. Attracting Qualified Leads: In this digital age, traditional marketing is proving to be not enough. Consumers want companies that are visible and active online. Connecting to customers through blogs, case studies and videos makes a much bigger impact than trade shows and cold calls.

How To Get Your Distributors To Actually Buy Your Product

The biggest key to sales growth is getting distributors to buy more of your product line. But how do you do that?

  • Education

If distributors truly understand the product, selling it should be a breeze. However, you cannot expect distributors to do all the legwork of research and training. Educate them on the products so they are equipped to then go out and sell. Doing so also helps them feel like they are part of your team. You will be ahead of the pack in sales if your distributors feel connected.

  • Content Creation

Write content that explains how your solutions (or products) help the end consumer and how some products can be used together. Consider both the distributor's struggles and challenges as well as the end consumer, so you can essentially do the marketing for the distributor through valuable content creation.

Marketing Automation Is the Future


The hidden benefit to all that lovely content you have created is in addition to these posts being online, your sales team should have processes in place to easily share this information with distributors. Here are some examples of things that can help you automate sending out valuable content to leads:

  • Email series
  • CRM
  • Editorial Calendar
  • Calls-to-Action (downloadable gated content)
  • Blogs

Why you want to start automating your manufacturing marketing:

  • Automation is a time-saver: You can schedule your posts so that you can batch your work, saving both time and money.
  • You can meet the needs of all of your distributors: Each distributor is unique - automation will ensure their many different needs are being met by assigning each distributor to a different contact group that has content tailored specifically to their needs.
  • Your posts can be tracked: The CRM provides a detailed report on each campaign that it automated.
  • Lead nurturing will be easier: You no longer have to connect manually with each lead. Automation will ensure that no leads are missed or overlooked.

Don't Miss Out on Sales in the Manufacturing Industry

The philosophy of inbound marketing is what lets the content do the work of educating your distributors for you. Your sales team can then work on how best to expand the products sold to them. You will also be able to extend customer lifetime value by maximizing what you sell to current distributors as the surest way to sales growth.

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