According to the GlobalSpec Trends in Industrial Marketing Survey, 70% of manufacturers expect sales to be up in 2010 over 2009, while only 7% stated sales would be down. This is a good sign the economy is on the road to recovery and also means marketing budgets are starting to open up. In fact, 31% of manufacturers are spending more on marketing this year than last year.

Where is the increased spending going? To marketing programs that generate quality leads.

When asked to rate the importance of nine different factors in allocating marketing budgets, manufacturers rated lead quality most important. Fit of audience exposure and reach of audience exposure placed second and third, respectively. Quantity of leads placed a distant sixth, and quantity of clicks to a Web site came in dead last. No surprise—any sales team would prefer a manageable number of quality leads with sales potential than a long list of unqualified leads or useless, anonymous clicks to their website.

When it comes to choosing programs that generate quality leads, manufacturers are increasing their online investments, knowing that the vast majority of their customers and prospects go online first when searching for information, products, services, and suppliers. 47% will spend more than one-third of their 2010 marketing budget online; 27% will spend more than half of their marketing budget online. The majority (51%) will spend more on online marketing in 2010 than they did in 2009.

What this means is that most manufacturers realize that targeted online programs that reach prospects in real time, online are the best programs for delivering quality leads with contact information—offering solid sales opportunities instead of anonymous clicks. It’s where you should be, too.

Download your copy of the Trends in Industrial Marketing 2010 white paper.

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