We get it. You see retail businesses all day long on your personal social media sites. You understand how they work for companies that sell directly to the consumer, but what about you? How can a manufacturing company utilize social media sites for their business needs? Social media for manufacturers can work for you in a lot of different ways. Each platform has its own demographics and active users that interactive with brands.
Here are examples of how manufacturers are rocking it on the top social media sites:
Facebook is still the global leader of social media sites, passing 1.65 billion monthly active users. While some younger demographics have gravitated away from this platform when not only their parents, but their grandparents, became active, it still is popular for a wide range of users.
Many people use Facebook to share and engage with their family, close friends and complete strangers. People regularly review businesses, whether it’s their favorite restaurant or a business connection.
Think of it this way. If you are making a new part or process that goes into an end product, chances are your customer is on Facebook. They are probably interacting with the end consumer. And while that may not be your role in engagement, you certainly can interact with your customers. You can reach out to them and talk about how what you do makes that final product worth having.
Also, while you are part of a manufacturing community, you’re also part of a local community. Do you ever participate in community events? Food drives? Silent auctions? Sponsor the little league team? These are all great ways to increase your visibility online by highlighting your efforts.
Example: Local Motors:
Local Motors created a fantastic video explaining its innovation. It got great response with more than 904 shares and over 200 comments in less than a month. Overall, Local Motors has an active Facebook presence with 206,670 followers and 330 reviews, ranking at a 4.5 out of 5 stars.
Twitter is a fast-paced social media site that is more popular among younger demographics. While people log onto Facebook and catch up on everything at their leisure, Twitter moves much faster. Tweets have 140 character limit and have a short shelf life. Some say that the average lifespan of a tweet is 18 minutes. Others say that if a post is retweeted, then its life is a little longer. It’s safe to say that if no engagement happens within an hour of when you post a tweet, it’s not going to. However, Twitter currently has 310 million active users so there are plenty of users to engage with. Utilizing hashtags (i.e. easily-found keywords starting with #) will greatly enhance your visibility. Additionally, searching by hashtags (such as #manufacturing, #business or #Cleveland) can streamline your process of accessing information on the platform for your on research needs.
Example: EXAIR Corporation:
EXAIR Corporation uses Twitter as a source of posting content pieces from its website, among other things. This connection is a great way to use social media as a part of your content marketing plan. The company could have added some hashtags to help increase visibility, however, this tweet proved popular on its own accord. Overall, EXAIR has 18,200,000 followers on Twitter.
LinkedIn is already designed for business. As a leader at your company, you may be using your personal LinkedIn account to engage with potential customers or employees. But it also creates an opportunity for your manufacturing business to reach out to vendors, post relevant content for your audience and share company news.
LinkedIn is also a great way to get your staff involved with your social media content. Because their contacts are business-related, them sharing your company posts will help amplify your message to a larger audience.
Example: Carlisle SynTec Systems
Carlisle SynTec Systems currently has 2,986 followers that regularly see updates from the company. As you can see, Carlisle had an opportunity to share a new warranty storefront and it had great engagement.
There are all types of videos that manufacturers can leverage. A lot of general YouTube use is video tutorials, so businesses can jump on this bandwagon as well. Highlighting manufacturing processes, product demonstrations, employee spotlights, new innovations, etc. can all be great use of YouTube for manufacturers.
Example: Lincoln Electric:
This Process Z™ video showcases Lincoln Electric’s high speed, low porosity solution for welding galvanized steel. From event coverage to new products to production basic information, Lincoln Electric has found various ways to produce engaging videos and regularly post them to YouTube. With 23,493 subscribers, it has amassed a large following on the video platform that currently has more than one billion users.
Similar to YouTube, Instagram is a visual platform. In fact, it’s all photos or short videos with a text sidebar. Instagram has continued to grow through the ranks of social media platforms, hitting more than 400 million users. Instagram is a great social media platform for manufacturers showing off the more visual elements of their business. Instagram is owned by Facebook so it’s easy to post content to both sites and even carry paid promotions from one platform to the other.
Example: Haas Automation:
Haas Automation has 27,500,000 followers on Instagram. Like Twitter, hashtags are widely used on Instagram, so much so that users will often use multiple hashtags per post.
The above video that Haas posted to Instagram got 3,660 views in just 5 hours.
Whether you want to engage with a younger demographic, post visually-compelling content or research trends in your industry, there is something for everyone on social media.
Want to get started but not sure where to begin? Contact us. We’re here to help.