In this post, we continue to share discussion topics from the Alliance Day presentation, Beyond Traditional Marketing, by Joe Quinn, NI Regional Marketing Communications Manager for the United States and Canada. Lately, his team been using to micro-target techniques. They tailor the programs to suit the needs of specific individuals and locations with the end goal of getting a visit for one of our field engineers. Note that the regional marketing programs require unique approaches and take direction from our regional sales business plans, so your relationship with field sales organization is essential.
Social Networking is changing the way engineers work. Engineers are networking across geographies to gain knowledge, using such tools as Twitter for technical support. Other sites allow for engineers to provide product development input, collaborate on solutions or just offer their opinions and expertise. These “relationship” marketing tactics are becoming an effective way to accomplish many of the same goals as face-to-face events. With Linkedin and Meetup.org, you can search for groups to join and introduce yourself to engineers. For instance, there are several renewable energy engineering groups on Linkedin for example and 100’s of Research and Development Engineering Groups on Meetup.org.
Do You Youtube?
While you may only consider YouTube as a way that your kids watch funny videos, it has become an effective tool for reaching larger audiences with demonstrations. You can use several methods. For example, Cyth Systems, video-taped their Guitar Hero tradeshow demonstration has been viewed nearly 180,000 times. Other companies have simply set up a webcam to record a whiteboard technical chat. If you do decide to post a video of NI technology, let us know so we can help promote it.
Marketing by Association
Are you and your team active in Engineering Associations? When the stimulus package was announced, the Regional Marcom Team began to research where the engineers who may be involved with stimulus projects go to get their information. We contacted over a dozen associations and emailed more than 200 local chapters offering technical education presentations by our Field Engineers. Many of these associations were run by manager-level contacts at some of our largest accounts. We have scheduled over 60 of these educational presentations. If you are interested, talk to your field engineer who might already have a relationship with the local association or may have content you can leverage. In addition many of the smaller regional shows instead of having a booth we are spending more time writing abstracts for consideration for the keynote and session slots.
Industry and Application Marketing
NI is also making more investments in regional targeted industry and application marketing. Typically this involves priming the market 3 months. This may involve local Google AdWords, list acquisition, exhibiting at a regional tradeshow to get names, and then target these names using a web cast with direct marketing. Using these techniques, we can build up the database leading up to a half day or full day seminar.
Market Research to Micro-Target
We are now piloting with non-traditional means to find contacts through research — looking for contacts outside the NI database using search, both paid and free. Sometimes just typing in a search of @companyname.com and the word engineer or engineering manager to find contacts. For instance, you can identify contacts in a company who have been funded or who have opened new facilities.
Regional marketing also creates specific programs to introduce the field engineers into major accounts. By mapping out the organizational charts and targeting departments, we can generate on-site visit and seminar opportunities. For instance, we will be working more with the National Laboratories as they are receiving funding from the stimulus package.
When working to get visits with Medical Device start-ups, you can leverage the Medical Device Grant program. The recipient can get free software and training if they agree to a hardware purchase and publish a customer solution. For more information, go to ni.com/medical or email firstname.lastname@example.org.