Why Is Internet Marketing Important for Distributors?
When we need any kind of information, the internet is the first place we go—and we expect to find it within seconds. We usually do.
We are all aware that marketing online is important. But how important is it for the promotional products business?
It’s always good to have some facts at hand and not just go by intuition or hunches. Plenty of data proves that in the B2B space, buyers go to the internet. Let’s look at a few stats:
- 89% of B2B researchers gather information about potential purchases through the internet - Google
- Before interacting with a website, the average B2B buyer conducts 12 different online searches - Google
In the promotional products business in particular, the online component of marketing is hugely important for growing your client base and sales.
There are three reasons why internet marketing is critical to the success of your promo business:
1. Buyers who are searching have an immediate need and are ready to buy.
People are researching vendors, and when they contact a provider, they have already done their due diligence and are ready to buy.
Keyword research tools such as Google’s Keyword Planner show that there are tens of thousands of searches every month, in each tens of thousands of different search terms related to promotional products.
That’s why, if you have high sales goals and need to add new clients to achieve those sales goals, it makes sense to invest in SEO and paid advertising. Showing up when people search is a surefire way to attract these ready-to-buy buyers.
2. People are googling you and your business.
You might think that you don’t have to pay that much attention to your online presence if you are not looking for aggressive growth. You are relying on referrals and a more personal approach by meeting people at functions, cold calling and other one-on-one types of activities. Maybe because you don’t have the bandwidth and prefer to grow slowly, or you just want to maintain the same level of sales.
The point is, when you meet someone new, or someone refers you, the first thing they are going to do is google you. If what they find is a generic cookie-cutter website (that says nothing about your personal approach to business, who you are and what you bring to the table) you’ve lost your chance of making a great first impression.
You will be judged by your website and social media presence—or lack thereof.
So google your name and business name and see what comes up, and do what is necessary to show up the way that you want.
3. People spend a great deal of time on social media. You need to be there.
People are checking in and out of social media all day long, and as they do they are discovering brands and following them.
- Social media is a source in making purchasing decisions for 84% of B2B executives - Leadspace
You don’t want to leave the field wide open to your competitors. You want your brand to be the one they discover, follow and build familiarity with.
Social media also allows you to build relationships with your existing clients and stay top of mind. As you follow them and they follow you, you’ll be engaging outside of the business transactions. This is how relationships are built these days.
If you feel overwhelmed by the thought of digital marketing and how to put a plan in place, get help. You don’t need to go it alone. Just don’t be left behind.
Start by educating yourself. Take advantage of the free educational digital marketing resources, specific for the distributor business, available on ActionMarketingCo.com.
Gloria Lafont is a mother, grandmother and business owner. Throughout her business career she has started, bought and sold a dozen businesses in the branding and marketing field, including a distributor company. She’s currently president of Action Marketing Co., founded in 2007. Her company focuses on helping distributors increase visibility, generate awareness and drive traffic so they can connect with more of their ideal clients and generate more leads and sales.
Gloria is a big fan and supporter of education and the cultural arts, volunteering her time and donating marketing support over the years to help various organizations grow in membership and revenue. She also enjoys the South Florida lifestyle mix of business, beaches and arts.