Manufacturers… What’s Your Brand Strategy?
11 Jan 2018
While manufacturing in the United States has adopted new technologies to streamline operations, logistics, increase capabilities, and provide better products, industry growth is still slow due to overseas competition.  Though manufacturers are consistently innovating, 2017 growth in the industry has only increased by 1.6% [1]. What is the brand strategy?

Manufacturers often rely on their sales teams to develop and solidify relationships.  However, with such a competitive environment, it is short-sighted to not only focus on sales. Even a B2B industry should have a brand strategy in place.

First, every business should have a unique selling proposition to convince prospects to work with your company as well as to increase loyalty among current customers.  It makes the sales teams’ jobs easier by providing key differentiators in an industry where prospects and customers may see many manufacturers as all the same. This provides additional value for the brand beyond cost.

Second, it is pertinent to understand your customer wants and needs and determine if your company meets them. Plus, there should be a strong understanding of why prospects work with your competitors vs. you.  Other than price, what is that key trigger point that would convince them to switch manufacturers?  Often this can be done using market research with methodologies such as focus groups and surveys. For example, you can learn about what is unique about your brand vs. the competition, as well as possible emotional triggers you would not normally associate with a manufacturing company.

Also, it is pertinent to determine what marketing channels not only reach your customers, but can best communicate your brand’s story.

Even if your competitive advantage is not the most advanced or the cheapest, a market strategy is a way to tell a compelling story that helps your customer understand your brand in a simple and digestible manner.

As you can tell, there are many moving parts to a marketing strategy.  Provoke Insights can help assist with a marketing or branding strategy and research needs.

Read our blogs about why primary and secondary research is so important when launching a successful brand.

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[1]  “Over-the-year employment changes and tests of significance, seasonally adjusted. Bureau of Labor Statistics. https://www.bls.gov Dec. 2017.

The 3 Most Popular Blogs of 2017
03 Jan 2018

We are looking back on 2017’s most popular blog posts on Provoke Insights. That is to say, what did people want to read about regarding brand strategy, advertising research, and brand research?

Number 1: Tech Company’s Brand Strategy

Interestingly, the number one spot is Tech Companies… What’s Your Brand Strategy? An older blog of ours, we wrote this way back in September 2015. Firstly, that the internet loses nothing! Secondly, this blog becomes more relevant every day as the tech industry continues to grow at a rapid rate. With more and more technology-based brands launching, there is a need to have a consistent marketing strategy based on research and insights. However, we see tech companies who start with tactics first and result in a flimsy advertising plan. Having worked with several technology companies this year, we have learned that each brand has a diverse and unique need. Also, we see that more and more tech firms are making sure that they have the right brand strategy in place.

Number 2: Millennials and Jewelry

Likewise, our second most popular blog – Millennials, Fine Jewelry, and the Luxury Category – is an oldie but a goodie. During 2017, the piece gained traction, but was written in December 2016. To sum up, this article was popular because of the need to understand this generation’s uncommon spending habits within the luxury category. The media talks endlessly about how millennials behave, how to reach them, and what they’re buying. Consequently, this blog’s popularity may have stemmed from the need to understand better this generation that has caused such a stir. In addition, were so interested in the topic because we did a four-part research project with Jewelers of America in 2017. Meanwhile, it included qualitative research among suppliers and retailers, as well as a segmentation that highlighted millennials as a primary target for a national jewelry campaign. You can read more about that here.

Number 3: Market Research Trends

On the other hand, we wrote our third most popular blog in 2017 – 7 New Trends in Market Research in 2017. In this blog, we ran down a list of new technology and innovative ideas to revitalize a market research strategy. Moreover, we are happy to say our predictions were right and we used almost all of these trends in 2017 and planned to use more of them in 2018. As a result, these trends should continue into 2018 with the added rise of smartphone-based research. Applications on smartphones can track users locations, gender, age, purchasing habits, and app usage. So anybody can buy demographic data – there’s a possibility that market research firms will take advantage of it. Until there is a framework in place to regulate this – all of the data is fair game.

We would like to wish you all a Happy New Year from the Provoke Insights Team. Thank you for reading about our most popular blogs. We are launching our updated advertising research study at the end of January. Keep an eye out for new blog posts with original information from the research study about advertisers, in-house marketers, the pitch process, stress levels in the workplace, media, and advertising budgets, and much more.

Check out some of our most recent posts from our strategy and advertising research blog here:

  1. Blockchain & the Markest Research Industry
  2. I’m Just Not That Into You: Exclusivity or Bad Marketing?
  3. Is Your Research Stuck in the 1980s: Update Your Brand Tracker!
  4. Market Research Doesn’t Need to Be Boring: Improve Data Visualization
  5. Tips For Building Brand Strategy for a Successful Brand
  6. What’s the Difference Between Quantitative and Qualitative?

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