“In the midst of every crisis lies great opportunity.”
– Albert Einstein
When the novel coronavirus struck its massive blow in 2020, many industries suffered. The manufacturing industry, however, had already been dealing with complex challenges—an aging workforce, a skills gap, and a labor shortage due to unattractive locations and the image of the “old economy.” In the face of the pandemic, it confronted a myriad of additional challenges. Trade barriers, political instability, natural disasters, and the epidemic itself forced companies to square the circle, manage risks and stay flexible.
Anderson International—a global leader, inventor, and manufacturer of the mechanical screw press—was no exception. Its machines required steel, and its products shipped globally, which nearly stopped production in its tracks. Machine maintenance for oilseed processing clients had to be done via cell phone and shared video. Additionally, traditional tradeshows were halted, preventing opportunities to meet new prospects and gain leads. However, Anderson stayed resilient and found innovative ways to approach the barriers.
The Solution: A Strong Manufacturing Marketing Strategy
Anderson has worked with Blue Star Design on various projects since 2016, but its need to combat the impacts of 2020’s “new normal” was a turning point in the partnership. While the company had favored traditional marketing tactics previously, by 2021, Anderson’s marketing team decided to refocus tradeshow funds toward a complete marketing strategy that included digital content and social media efforts.
“We took this opportunity to focus on one area of growth for Anderson, started writing digital content, and used social media as a robust marketing tool,” said Julia Briggs, the CEO of Blue Star. “Anderson chose to focus on its High Sheer Extrusion System (HSES). It was comfortable providing a same-day quote with this particular machine, and we locked in on that offer.”
We mapped out a 12-month digital content plan focused on rich keywords for an in-depth blogging strategy and a plan to promote the HSES on social media and throughout the website. We created a cadence of emails to clients and prospects alike.
The Results: Proof Spurs Additional Marketing Investment
Blue Stars’ efforts proved to be a great success for the client, As a result, Anderson decided to invest more in digital marketing. Blue Star developed a keyword strategy focused on content dedicated to specific oilseeds, hosted interviews with company experts, and dug deep into research. We wrote valuable content and gated it behind forms. We doubled the company’s blog content, made strategic updates to its website, and dedicated more time to social media.
Within nine months, we more than doubled traffic to Anderson’s website and form conversions. With the influx of leads, sales decided to be selective with quotes, and today it has the highest conversion rate for capital quotes in the last four years.
“At first, I was nervous by the amount of work Blue Star proposed, but they did all the heavy lifting for us. I was a marketing department of one, but from the quantity and quality of content we generated, you would think I had a whole team behind me. In reality, I did but at a much lower cost than doing it all in-house.”
– Eric Stibora, VP Oilseed Division, Anderson International Corp
Most of Anderson’s leads today are coming through their website, and they are seeing 59 times the return on investment (ROI) on revenue and 12-15x on profit over the last four years working with Blue Star.
Often manufacturers are hesitant to use digital marketing strategies. They look to their competitors, who may not be as savvy, and therefore incorrectly interpret that it doesn’t work or it’s not worth pursuing. Anderson’s team overcame that apprehension, and the Covid Crisis provided the opportunity to try.
“What I truly appreciate about Anderson’s team is that they take the time to track where leads are coming from and present us with that information,” said Briggs. “This information allows us to hone in on areas where our efforts are successful, so we can create stronger strategies for the following year. It gives my team proof that our work is extremely valuable and pushes us to work even harder for our client.”
View our work at Andersonintl.com
Contact us today if you are interested in learning more about how a manufacturing marketing strategy could benefit your corporation.