Bring these six supply chain marketing strategies to bear in developing a supply chain marketing plan for a manufacturing or distribution business.
While your plans are likely to include both short term marketing strategies and long range strategic goals, the values that guide your plan should not change. We came up with six traits that characterize successful supply chain marketing plans. Keep these principles in mind as you evaluate strategies that can help with growing a manufacturing or distribution business.
6 Keys for Supply Chain Marketing Plan Success
S – Service
Unless you have an exclusive product or are the only distributor of a product for which there are no real substitutes, it’s likely that your products – in and of themselves – are not the most important reason that people should choose to do business with you.
A supply chain marketing plan that revolves around the idea of service – the effective solutions or unique added value that your business or sales professionals are able to offer your customers – is more likely to produce compelling calls to action, marketing copy and advertising.
U – Urgency
While the supply chain industry is constantly evolving and products and services are always entering and leaving the marketplace, your particular area of manufacturing or distribution expertise may be one that rarely changes, evolves or produces innovation.
Whether your business falls at one end of the spectrum or the other, your marketing plan must create a sense of urgency among your buyers in order to stimulate more sales. If your customers never have anything to lose by waiting to buy from you, there is little motivation for them to take action more quickly.
P – Persistence
Sales representatives have to make an average of 6 contacts to sell a product or service (33 Cold Calling Statistics). One email, one phone call, one networking event, one tradeshow — it is going to take more than one attempt to make contact with your decision makers.
Make sure that your supply chain marketing plan is not reliant on campaigns that need to hit the target on the first try. Plan for marketing campaigns to be played out over time and across multiple marketing channels.
P – Proactive
How well do you understand the buying cycle or customer journey of your supply chain business? The extent to which you understand what occurs at each phase of the buying cycle and design customer experiences that will help prospects move to the next phase of the customer journey will affect the bottom line when it comes to conversions.
If your supply chain marketing plan does not move prospects through the buying cycle effectively, you will have to generate many, many more leads to fill the sales funnel in order to meet your revenue requirements or grow your manufacturing or distribution business. Refining the buying journey at every step is essential to increased conversions and ROI (return on investment).
L – Leverage
The word leverage means to, “use (something) to maximum advantage.” As you brainstorm potential tactics, calls to action, advertising and marketing campaigns, those areas where your business has competitive advantages and supremacy should be used to your organization’s maximum advantage.
Rather than trying to compete in areas where your competitors have already made a name for themselves, look for a niche or value-add that creates a competitive advantage that will be persuasive and meaningful to members of your target audiences. Do not assume that prospects and customers understand the benefits of working with you.
Y – Your One Thing
Your “one thing” is sometimes called a USP (unique selling proposition) or UVP (unique value proposition). In terms of your supply chain marketing plan, your one thing is the single-most compelling reason people should choose to do business with your organization instead of your competitors.
Your ‘one thing’ might be something that sets your products apart. It could also be something unique to your manufacturing process, your corporate values, or even the overarching vision of your business.
Writing a supply chain marketing plan is no small task, especially when it comes to the marketing strategies you hope will help you grow your manufacturing or distribution business to the next level. We created an acronym from the word “supply” with six important things to remember as you develop the marketing strategies and tactics you plan to put into action.
Although the supply chain has benefited as the US economy continues growing in the post-recession era, it is worth noting that logistics, manufacturers and distributors that have a strong supply chain marketing plan in place stand to benefit most. Now is the time to write a new marketing plan or revisit your organization’s strategic long range plan in order to identify areas of opportunity, carve out competitive advantages and strengthen your business.
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