The Thomas Blog

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Business Tips

How to Innovate Without Blowing Your R&D Budget

In 1998, Steve Jobs told Fortune, “Innovation has nothing to do with how many R&D dollars you have.” Jobs believed that throwing money at a problem should not be the answer. Creativity and genuine genius should win out. And whether you’re a pharmaceutical and software company with a large budget for research and development or a custom manufacturer with considerably less, a budget is still a budget.

So here are a few tips to help you spearhead innovation without blowing your R&D budget.

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Business Tips

What Is Business Process Management: For Industrial Companies

Industrial processes have to be precise. Any error, from a disrupted link in a supply chain to a faulty step in the manufacturing process, could significantly drop the quality of your delivered goods or service. 

With a highly competitive environment, mistakes are intolerable. 

Mistakes and errors are rife when your industrial business does not have a set of documented steps for every business operation. This is where business process management comes in. 

In this blog, we will explore what business process management is, and how it can be used to reduce errors in all of your business procedures. This includes procedures such as using Thomasnet.com to source suppliers, to the factory floor operations, right through to the end of your supply chain with product/service delivery and marketing. 

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Business Tips

How To Expand Your Manufacturing Business Into New Markets

American manufacturing is on the upswing. Hiring activity is  at historic highsreshoring is bringing production back to the U.S., and buyers are spending more on new suppliers than they have in recent years.

Business owners continue to be cautious with investments and costs, with good reason. Even as manufacturing and the economy as a whole make gains, the memory of tougher times looms. Fortunately, the digital marketing landscape today allows you to take substantial steps to grow your business and expand into new markets. 

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Business Tips

Tips To Become A Top Supplier

Most of us know that supplying a quality product or service on time, and at a fair price, is critical to achieving customer satisfaction. But what if you're not the only one that can do this for your customer?

Become your customer's first choice for their next order and rank as a top supplier with these tips.

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Business Tips

Why Manufacturing Brand Marketing Is So Important

When it comes to branding, the major players probably come to mind first — Amazon, Coca-Cola®, Disney, and so on. The strength of their name recognition is immense. When these names come up, you immediately see their logo, and even if the logo doesn’t bully its way into your brain, you at least know what they’re selling. It doesn’t matter whether you consume their products or not; you know them. They’ve seared your mind with a branding iron. (See what we did there?)

Many manufacturing and industrial companies, however, don't think that they need to worry about branding. They prefer to rely on word of mouth and referrals to attract new business, and they feel that branding isn't important in their space. 

But there's a better way to grow your business.

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Business Tips

Challenges And Opportunities In The Aerospace Industry

The aerospace and defense industry is a major source of innovation and technological advancements. It plays a critical role in national defense, enables safe and efficient air travel, increases communication and the dissemination of knowledge, and contributes to increased consumerism and the globalization of supply chains.

Since the Wright Brothers' first powered flight in 1903, the aerospace industry has had an enviable record of achievement. From transforming modern transportations to landing a man on the Moon — it's no surprise the American aerospace industry's positive track record and strength makes it one of the largest contributors of employment in manufacturing. So what are some of the challenges this group faces?

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Business Tips

How To Improve Your Supplier-Distributor Relationship

A prospect that you’ve been chasing for months has been researching you as well, checking out your product catalog on a distributor’s website and downloading your CAD models. They’ve narrowed down their shortlist to you and a couple of your competitors, and now they’re visiting your website to gather additional details.

But when they arrive on your site, what they see doesn’t quite match what they saw on the distributor’s site. Part numbers are off, and specs aren’t aligning 100%. Plus, basic company information doesn’t match with what they read before and content looks outdated.

Reconciling the differences would take way too long, so instead they just cross you off their list. And you never even knew they were interested in the first place.

Unfortunately, this scenario plays out all too frequently and prevents the supplier and distributor from meeting their goals. In some cases, the scenario results in a dropped key customer and the existing customer base begins to diminish.

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Business Tips

What To Do If You Lose A Key Customer

Customer retention can often mean the difference between your company thriving or dying. This makes the loss of major customers one of the greatest risk factors for manufacturing businesses. Your consistent goal should be to go to any lengths necessary to retain these keystone clients. However, over the course of even a vastly successful company’s lifespan, this kind of paradigm-shifting customer loss can — and will — occur. 

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