With distribution networks scattered across cities, states, or the country, manufacturing companies face steep obstacles to creating marketing campaigns that are both unified with national branding guidelines and personalized to local dealers’ unique audiences.
With 76 percent of customers looking for consistent brand communication experiences across every channel—and yet, no two markets are the same, and 80 percent of consumers are more likely to buy when a brand offers a personalized experience. The challenge, then, is to equip local dealers (aka your local marketers) with everything they need to access and/or create localized customer communications while adhering to corporate brand standards and messaging.
The solution: modular content.
What Is Modular Content?
Sometimes known as templated content, modular content is content that’s been divided into the smallest possible reusable “blocks” that can be remixed into any number of assets for any number of channels. Think text blocks like disclaimers, value statements, or product descriptions, and visuals like product shots, videos, or infographics.
Each module is created and approved by corporate brand leaders, then distributed (ideally via a centralized marketing hub like U.Connect) so that everyone in the distribution network has easy access whenever they need to create a marketing campaign or put together sales materials for prospective customers.
Modular content optimizes marketing operations in three primary ways:
- It enables companies to save money on outsourced content creation, freeing up skilled designers’ and copywriters’ time (and the marketing department’s budget) for more high-value and evergreen content versus managing and creating 1:1 requests for each location.
- It empowers anyone to create well-designed assets with minimal support or oversight. There’s no longer a need to start from scratch or go digging through emails for those brand and messaging guidelines, risking inaccurate messaging or deviation from brand quality standards.
- It takes most of the wait time out of the approval process, because each module has already been pre-approved. Want to take it a step further? A good system allows for you to decide if you want to review and approve an asset once it’s customized.
How Do Manufacturing Companies Use Modular Content?
Consider a sales rep who’s getting ready to present a new line of products to buyers in his market. He knows from experience with these buyers that they’re likely to be more interested in certain products than others, so he wants to be sure those are front and center in his marketing materials. He also knows from experience that these buyers are highly technically oriented, and they’ll want to see tech specifications right away.
Rather than forcing sales or your distributors to reach out to a designer, using time and resources that could be focus on holistic marketing efforts, they can easily log into the marketing platform and use the pre-approved modular content to easily and effectively customize a needed marketing assets that will showcase top products for his buyers, answer all their technical questions upfront, and maybe even offer a special or a discount that’s unique to his market. Your team sets the brand standards, the main copy and then decides what can be customized leveraging the modular (or templated) capabilities.
Easy access to these templates and modules prevents several potential problems that could be detrimental to both the local marketing strategy and the brand as a whole:
- Inaccurate messaging: No matter how familiar your sales reps and/or distributors are with the company’s products, if they’re starting from scratch and writing out things like tech specifications or safety information themselves, it’s easy to introduce minor errors that lead to nasty surprises—in-store displays with inaccurate information, user manuals with errors that create safety hazards (as well as likely legal issues)—and a damaged brand reputation down the line. With modular content, it’s easy for reps to pull the meticulously vetted, approved messaging to ensure total accuracy and consistency from market to market. And you can lock down sections that you want to lock down. The templates are 100% customized to your brand and needs.
- Overspend: When distributor networks are left to fend for themselves, it’s easy for the corporate marketing team to lose control of the budget. From hiring expensive designers to reinvent the wheel to using costly print brokers for production, local reps are liable (with all the right intentions) to rack up significant unnecessary costs. But with easy-to-use templates and access to a trusted production partner all in one place, that worry disappears.
- Poor quality: Similarly, the DIY design and production approach means corporate loses out on quality control opportunities, leaving their reps to potentially work with unskilled designers or low-quality printers in order to save money. Again, though, modular content and production access both alleviate these concerns—without requiring the national marketing team to spend time and energy they don’t have vetting the quality of every asset created by every member of the distribution network.
Implementing a Modular Content Strategy for Your Manufacturing Company
Modular content is a game changer for manufacturing companies looking for ways to streamline marketing operations without sacrificing quality. However, modular content only works as part of a company’s holistic marketing management ecosystem, with a centralized content repository or asset management system at its foundation. OneTouchPoint’s U.Connect platform is just that (and much more). From its content hub to its budget and inventory tracking capabilities, order management center, and more, U.Connect helps companies take control of their brands, ensure content is locked down (and versions tracked) all while serving as a central command center for flawless marketing execution and supply chain management.
When you’re ready to streamline operations and support local marketers by embracing modular content, we encourage you to contact us to talk with our experts about how OneTouchPoint can deliver phenomenal results at a great price.