The Thomas Blog

Industrial marketing and manufacturing sales tips to help you grow your business.

6 Steps To Transforming Your Sales Organization

It’s no secret that the sales landscape has changed in recent years. The general B2C space adapted fairly quickly to new technologies and tools, but for B2B businesses, and particularly industrial companies, the adoption has been slow moving. Keeping our reliance on the old rolodex and trade show lists in mind, it’s time to re-evaluate how we can keep up with the broader trends and modern tactics. 

We’ve had tremendous success using inbound selling principles — essentially, this is the process of aligning your sales process with your customer’s buyer journey. By asking the right questions and showing how you can solve a problem, you’re that much closer to onboarding your next client. 

While we don’t anticipate an overnight adoption, we did pull together some tips to incorporate tactics that fall under the inbound sales umbrella, which will help you get started and become more competitive in the current market.

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Why You Can't Rely On Word Of Mouth To Get More Leads

For small industrial businesses looking to gain new leads, old-school word-of-mouth referrals can still be effective, allowing you to expand brand awareness organically over time. But relying solely on word-of-mouth can seriously hinder your efforts to reach potential buyers. If this is currently your go-to method for lead generation, you may be missing out on some big opportunities — hurting your business and, ultimately, your bottom line.

But why exactly is relying on word-of-mouth marketing so ineffective? Below are a few of the main reasons this method shouldn’t be used on its own.

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Google Is Shaking Up Its SEO Algorithm Again. So What?

Search Engine Optimization is a game with constantly changing rules, and if you want your site to rank prominently in search results, it’s imperative that you understand the latest rulebook.

Unfortunately, that’s easier said than done. Because, for all intents and purposes, there is no rulebook.

We’re currently in the midst of one of the most turbulent periods of search engine ranking fluctuations ever  and even the experts are having a difficult time figuring out why.

What does that mean to you as an industrial marketer? We’ll break it down.

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The Importance of Video Marketing for Manufacturing Companies

The most effective content marketing strategies incorporate various types of content, allowing companies to reach users at different stages throughout the buying journey. Offering informative blogs, white papers, eBooks, infographics, case studies, calculators, checklists, and other forms of content not only helps garner new leads, it also establishes you as a knowledgeable thought leader in your field. Developing fresh, new content can also improve your SEO rankings, making it easier for people to find your company.

While you may be providing an ample amount of written content for your site visitors, you might be missing one crucial component — videos. Increasingly important in today’s digital landscape, video content allows for efficient dissemination of complex information while providing an interactive, engaging user experience.

Below are the four of the most compelling reasons to start incorporating video into your content marketing campaign.

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Becoming BIM Ready: The Risk Of Doing Nothing

Building Product Manufacturers (BPM) were hit particularly hard during the Great Recession that struck the U.S. economy in 2008. With the economy spiraling downward, commercial building projects were either de-funded or put on indefinite hold. Because of this setback, many BPMs became extremely conservative financially and very insular in their sales & marketing.

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5 Scary Marketing Stats

This Halloween, more than $2 billion worth of candy will be given out across the United States.

What can be more frightening than the thought of millions of kids hopped up on $2 billion worth of sugar? These soberingly scary stats about marketing.

70 Percent Of Marketers Lack A Consistent Or Integrated Content Strategy

Experienced trick-or-treaters set out with a plan — they have a clear vision of the candy they want to collect, and they know just where they need to knock in order to make it happen (while avoiding those houses giving out pennies).

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Smart Technology And Wearable Trends In Manufacturing

Whether tracking fitness activity or ordering a sandwich, “there’s an app for that,” as the saying goes. Wearable technology is far from new, but it’s very much now: Gadgets that were once considered “geeky” and specialized are now being used by all kinds of people, the tech-savvy and traditionalists alike. Wearable technology, for instance, has skyrocketed in popularity.

The IoT, or Internet of Things, and the wearable technology that drives so much of its functionality, has found itself smack in the middle of the manufacturing sector’s everyday workflow, and demand just keeps rising.

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5 Steps To Manage Risk Before You Begin Exporting

Companies dealing with sluggish economies or saturated domestic markets often look to international expansion to manage risk. Consider this though: by expanding internationally, a company simultaneously mitigates and creates risk. There is inherent risk in expansion, particularly internationally; even mammoth retailers like Target have failed spectacularly.

Before expanding, a company must plan carefully, understand the market, staff carefully, and accept that the venture may still fail.

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The ABC's Of Making The Shortlist

As you know, industrial/B2B buyers looking to establish a long-term relationship with your business may vet you quite thoroughly. This could include visiting your facility, checking your finances, talking to customers and more.

However, before they get to that point, today’s buyers prefer to evaluate suppliers anonymously, then create a shortlist of potential partners before contacting them for further vetting.*

Of course, evaluating you anonymously as they create their shortlists means learning as much as they can about you online. This blog post will help you make sure your online presence doesn’t have any holes that leave you short of making those shortlists.

The following A to Z list goes beyond the obvious “what you do” info, and into the nuts and bolts of what makes your business unique.

Of course, depending on whether you’re an OEM, custom manufacturer, service company or distributor, not everything on the list may apply to you.

Still, this is a great opportunity to make sure you’re making the best first impression on customers that may have the power to change your business — whether you make that impression on your website or on a supplier discovery and evaluation platform such as Thomasnet.com.

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