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LinkedIn for manufacturers in the funnel

How manufacturing marketers should use LinkedIn in the buying cycle

Awhile back we wrote about why healthcare marketers should use LinkedIn for reaching their audiences. With so many recent changes to the social platform, we figured it is time to address the topic again, but this time with a twist – here’s lookin’ at you manufacturing marketers!

It’s no secret that print readership is dwindling. It’s a well-known fact. And it’s forcing marketers and PR practitioners to turn their creative juices toward finding alternative ways to not only reach their audiences, but also create new touchpoints to keep them engaged at various stages of the buying cycle.

Some publications are taking research into their own hands to learn what platforms are utilized most by their readers., for one, surveyed 1,100 engineers to find out where they go for information (get the highlights here). Below is what they found out.

  • Digital trade publications: 41%
  • Vendor websites: 56%
  • Social media: 40%
  • Printed publications: 38%
  • News aggregators: 36%
  • Conferences/tradeshows: 14%

While this shows that being in digital trade publications and keeping your website in tip-top shape should still be a priority for manufacturers targeting engineers, it makes a persuasive argument for a strong social media strategy as well.

In our experience working with top manufacturing clients, using LinkedIn can work close to wonders in reaching specific audience segments and helping convert those into customers in a cost-effective way.

Sound like you? Then let’s discuss how LinkedIn’s latest features and targeting tools can enhance your next manufacturing marketing campaign throughout the entire buying cycle, from top-of-funnel attraction to bottom-of-funnel conversion.

Top of funnel

Niche audience targeting
Let’s say you and your team created a new kick ass piece of content. You’re thoroughly excited about its potential but want to make sure you’re deploying it as smartly as possible. Namely, you want to make sure it resonates with a very specific audience. LinkedIn no longer restricts its Sponsored Content campaigns to fulfilling a baseline audience reach, meaning you can get your content in front of niche audiences.

Sponsored Content video ads
You’ve most likely come across the powerful stats reinforcing that video content is king. LinkedIn jumped aboard the bandwagon and now offers sponsored video ads. Here you can build brand awareness with visual storytelling and collect high-quality leads through a call to action button or lead gen forms. And as with its traditional Sponsored Content option, you’re able to target your video ads to your desired audience.

Audience Network
Why stop at sponsoring your quality content on just LinkedIn! With its native advertising network, your sponsored content can be displayed on quality, third-party websites extending your reach beyond the website’s digital walls. It’s another way to be seen where your audiences spend their time online.

Middle of funnel

But what about those who’ve previously visited your website? LinkedIn can now retarget them, too. By putting the LinkedIn Insight tag on your company’s website, LinkedIn will be able to promote your content to those who’ve already expressed interest in you. It’s another way to stay top of mind for those in the consideration stage of the buying cycle.

Bottom of funnel and beyond

Lead Gen Forms
Collect leads by including a Lead Gen Form as a call to action with your next Sponsored Content campaign. What makes this offering extra special is that the forms are pre-populated with the needed information based off of the user’s profile. Broken is the barrier of filling out the form in order to access a piece of content.

Contact targeting and matched audiences
Now let’s say you want to get your kick ass piece of content in front of a list of your customers and/or additional divisions of their companies. Just upload it to the site and LinkedIn will tell you how many it’s able to match and subsequently target those contacts. You can further target the list by selecting specific job titles or other fields. This can be a great maneuver to stay in front of your top clients and encourage organic growth.

LinkedIn isn’t for your parents’ social strategy. It’s continued to up its ante and tailor its tools to make it easier for marketing and PR professionals to reach their desired audiences.

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