In these unprecedented times, with remote workforces and tight budgets, marketing departments are under pressure to do more with less and demonstrate high ROI. Many marketing teams allocate resources to digital and online channels that can more effectively target niche audiences and demonstrate measurable results.
Even as pandemic restrictions are eased, we are spending more of our daily lives online. According to a GlobalWebIndex survey, consumers report spending more time consuming media at home. Smartphone usage has increased dramatically, with 70% of all global respondents spending more time on their smartphone, surpassing 80% for Gen Z. Given these statistics, it’s no surprise that digital is likely the big winner here, and companies will need to rub shoulders with companies like LinkedIn, Google, Amazon, Facebook and HubSpot.
Additionally, due to social distancing resulting from COVID-19, marketers are re-examining investments in live events today. Last year, PredictHQ found that COVID-19 concerns led to a 500% increase in trade show cancellations and postponements.
Rather than sitting on those unused marketing dollars, companies should shift some of their budget to digital advertising channels, which can target the same audiences that would attend live events, but at a much higher opportunity cost. lower for their marketing and sales team. Additionally, since all results are traceable and digital channels can be throttled up or down, the downside risk is minimal compared to the upside potential.
For manufacturers, the main digital channels they should leverage include paid search and social media such as LinkedIn. Below, we describe a few use cases for these channels.
While some niche makers may resist paying to advertise a product that only a handful of companies will search for, that’s exactly why they need to take advantage of paid search. With the right paid search campaigns in place, if someone searches for their offer, it will show up in the top three positions of Google’s search results.
For niche makers, these are important searches for your organization to appear in, as anyone entering a specific product or service into Google search is most likely in their buying cycle. Don’t miss the opportunity to publicize your name and product/service offering at this critical time.
The social imperative
As a manufacturer, you may wonder about social media, asking yourself “is our audience on social media? The answer is yes, you need to advertise on social media! The catch is that you don’t need to focus on the Facebooks/TikToks of the world. Instead, focus your advertising dollars on platforms like LinkedIn. For example, as the first social channel dedicated to professionals, LinkedIn provides access (through its advertising solutions) to decision-makers and influencers of target companies. Forms ads, sponsored content, and LinkedIn InMail messages offer ways to reach buyers.
The transition to digital marketing has been predicted for years. However, the global COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated this shift in ways marketers could not have anticipated. Today, after more than a year of pandemic restrictions, we have passed the point of no return. If you haven’t started making this change yet, now is the time. Your potential customers have already switched to digital channels. Will you meet them there?