It’s Time to Put in Place a Direct to Consumer Strategy

Author -  Vaughan Reed - Web Strategist

In our last blog post Manufacturers face being left behind if they don’t consider a Direct to Consumer Relationship we discussed the need for manufactures to take control of their own marketing through a Direct to Consumer (DTC) strategy. Today’s consumers are driving the need for manufacturers to develop and implement their own marketing strategy. Don’t risk being left behind. It is time for you to take your marketing into your own hands. We can guide you through the process and in this post we look at how to implement a DTC strategy.

Why Should Manufactures Implement a DTC Strategy?

There are three main players involved in the marketing and selling of your products: the retailer, the distributer and you, the manufacturer. Which of these three should drive your marketing strategy? Not the retailer since they handle multiple brands of which yours is just one. They have no vested interest in focusing on only one specific brand. So what about the distributer? What is their interest in driving your marketing strategy? Your distributers have their specific territory that they sell your products in. They do have an interest in an online marketing strategy for their territory. However, your DTC strategy needs to be much bigger than the territory of any specific distributer. It is up to you to implement your own DTC strategy. It is you who knows how you want to position your brand. You are best placed to lead an online marketing strategy and front the way forward for your retailers and distributers. Now is the time to put a direct to consumer marketing strategy in place if your business is going to surpass your competitors and their direct to consumer sales sites.

 

How to Implement your DTC Strategy

Direct to consumer marketing is more than just driving sales. Using your retailers’ and distributers’ expertise it is important that you start capturing website visits and e-commerce purchase data. This will provide you with an insight to your customers’ buying behaviours and inclinations. From this you can create a new set of metrics and create personalised and important marketing strategies that are completely geared towards your customers. Once you have the data you need you can plan and implement a customer-focused strategy. Here are some important components that should make up your DTC strategy.

  1. Have a website for your products but it does not need to be sales focused. It needs to provide customer focused content and educational information. Your website should feed your potential customers with copious amounts of relevant content that is related but not focused on your products.
  2. Your intent is to develop a relationship with your customers and your potential customers independent of your retailers or distributers. In order to do this your website needs to be interactive and educational. It needs to entertain, educate and enter into conversations with your audience. Training Videos, How to Guides, Helpful Articles, Detailed Product Information, Manufacture Data Sheets, Live Chat and Online Help are all components that can be used to create a DTC strategy.
  3. The Direct to Consumer strategy should include email marketing and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) so that your potential customers can stay informed and find the information they are looking for, including finding you.
  4. It's not just about the website, today’s tech-savvy consumers demand information be readily available at their fingertips across any device, regardless of whether they are online or browsing in-store. Have you considered other digital strategies such as; Mobile Apps, In-store Digital Signage and In-store Touch Screen kiosks as a way of getting your brand, marketing message and informative content in front of your potential customers?
  5. Use analytics to measure your DTC efforts and to improve them. Your analytics should lead to more relevant content, more personalised communication and better marketing because you will learn through effort.

Remember as you go forward that direct to consumer marketing is a combination of all of the above. It is a strategy and one that the successful manufacturer should eagerly embrace in an effort to increase sales.

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