Vacuum Engineering Services build and supply helium leak testing machinery for a range of industries around the world, including automotive, HVAC, refrigeration and pharmaceutical. After being introduced to Studiowide through The University of Liverpool Management School, Vacuum Engineering Services tasked us to conduct a full analysis and report on their marketing activities.
The purpose of this analysis was to understand exactly where their organisation stood today, and then working in partnership together, creating a vision statement and plan, detailing the strategy and actions required to get the company to where they wanted to be.
During this analysis, Studiowide mapped out all of the strategical and tactical activities – detailing the marketing programmes the company needed to undertake and how we, as a full-service marketing partner, could assist them to meet and exceed their goals.
A contributing factor to VES’ decision to work with us was our end-to-end service offer and our scientific approach to marketing. As a result of which, we are regularly called upon by The University of Liverpool to provide marketing workshops. Luke Sansby, Sales Director at Vacuum Engineering Services, was a delegate in a workshop held by Studiowide, and the detail of what was presented at that event resonated with Vacuum Engineering Services, who immediately recognised the problems that their company were facing, and how Studiowide could provide the missing pieces to their company marketing activities.
Like most small-to-medium-sized engineering companies, Vacuum Engineering Services do not have the luxury of a full-time, in-house marketing department.
The company operates a traditional sales approach to growing their business and consequently have a number of internal and external sales personnel to help them in delivering their growth.
The company were becoming increasingly aware of how digitisation was spreading across the business-to-business sectors and was now disrupting their markets. As more and more competitors started to embrace digital marketing, the company reacted accordingly by embarking on their own marketing campaigns. However, although this approach seemed to be “better than doing nothing”, it was fragmented and unsustainable.
Another challenge experienced by Vacuum Engineering Services was the internal resources required to keep the momentum going. Furthermore, the company required someone to kick-start the translation of their business objectives into tangible marketing activities that could be directly linked to revenue growth.
These challenges were not exclusive to the marketing function. The sales department also felt the impact; buyers were going online and mining as much of the information they needed themselves from various suppliers prior to making any formal sales enquiry.
“I have been nothing short of impressed by the whole team at Studiowide. These guys are professional, always punctual, and have a great depth of knowledge across the entire range of marketing activities. I have received a level of service above and beyond what was expected. Studiowide are a fantastic team of professionals who are a pleasure to work with.”
Studiowide undertook a thorough analysis with the senior team at Vacuum Engineering Services to understand the company objectives. A Lead Generation Audit was performed to determine their strengths and weaknesses when it came to generating qualified leads.
Following this event, a report was submitted to Vacuum Engineering Services. This communicated exactly what we would do, and when, in order to help the company to exceed their marketing goals.
We supported our client all of the way through this analysis stage. Each new topic that we introduced to the company, such as a CRM solution; Marketing Automation; Lead Generation; was backed up with a user guide or video to explain exactly what each of the technologies or systems were, and how they fitted into the overall marketing ecosystem.
One of the gaps identified during the audit was that the company did not have a marketing system or any marketing processes in place. This was one of the first items we addressed. We created a Lead Process Map to use as a blueprint, to communicate exactly how all of the proposed marketing activity slotted together, showing all component parts working as one ecosystem.
Due to the scale of the task, the company agreed to proceed with the marketing channels that would give the biggest return on investment in year one. Our team undertook comprehensive evaluations on the most suitable marketing channels, using our marketing channel evaluation tool. This allowed us to identify the lead generation activity that would provide the most value for money, and objectively justify what to include in the marketing strategy.
In order to bring unity to the Sales and Marketing process, we liaised with the sales team to agree on the key criterion as to when all new leads would be considered as “Sales Ready”. This handover point was then added into the Lead Process Map to visualise when a contact who has moved through the system becomes Sales Ready. At this point, the Sales team would pick up the new Lead and act accordingly.
Once component parts were identified and mapped out, visualising lead acquisition, lead generation and lead nurturing, the next stage was for us to begin to implement some technologies to support the delivery of this programme.
The company did not yet have a CRM that they found to be suitable, so we built a temporary CRM online and linked this to a bespoke marketing automation email platform. This was installed directly into the back-end Content Management System (WordPress) of the Vacuum Engineering Services website. The benefits of having this integrated system installed directly, instead of using a 3rd party email service provider, was not only a huge cost-benefit for the company, but also meant that all contact and campaign information was kept in one place, and not held on servers outside the company domain.
Following this, we then looked at the types of marketing communications that were required. To begin this, we held a workshop with the senior team at Vacuum Engineering Services to establish the different buyer personas for each of their target markets. This gave us enough information to understand the challenges and the pain points their target customers were facing. This proved key to the success of each of the emails, blog posts, cases studies, social media posts and landing pages that we produced, as it allowed us to tailor our messages to each potential customer group. This demonstrated to the customer that Vacuum Engineering Services not only understood them, but that they had the solution to their problems.
Once we had a clear picture of exactly who the buyers were, our next step was to identify the buying process. Previously, the company had only become aware of new potential buyers after those contacts had done their own research online. Having someone “pop up” on the radar at this stage is too far along the buying process. We recommended to Vacuum Engineering Services that they should create communications which act as a lead magnet, to hook-in and track those buyers early on, during the “Discovery” stage.
This discovery stage was the first stage that we looked at. We agreed the best approach was to detail the competitive difference for Vacuum Engineering Services using an infographic. This was a great way to get the recipient to visualise the key differences between their product offer and what competitors were offering.
The next stage we identified was the “Consideration” stage. We produced an impactful case study which focused on the ease-of-use when dealing with Vacuum Engineering Services.
The final stage of their buyers’ process was the “Decision” stage. We created an ROI Calculator to help prospective customers figure out for themselves exactly what the cost-benefit was, over the long term, if they went with the Vacuum Engineering Solution.
One of the supporting channels that we identified and agreed to utilise for this programme was LinkedIn. This would prove a great way to reach out to their B2B customer in a conversational way that was slightly less intrusive than email. We created a social media production schedule and shared this with the team, along with a 100-day communication plan. Once this was signed off and agreed, we then started to drip-feed relevant ambient content to support the overall programme.
The company was also undertaking some targeted LinkedIn activity via their sales teams. We identified that we could help them in their endeavours and took the senior team through a Lunch & Learn workshop on “How to Generate Leads Using LinkedIn”. This highlighted even more Best Practice techniques that the company started to use right away in their own campaigns.
The following items were successfully delivered as part of our fullservice marketing programme:
- Situational Analysis workshop
- Marketing Planning
- Monthly newsletter to all current customers
- Search Engine Optimised website pages to drive traffic to the website
- Lead magnet landing pages to capture contact information at the point of interest
- Optimised business listing and company pictures in Google My Business
- Bespoke email marketing platform built directly into the Vacuum Engineering Services website
- AdWords campaigns promoting specific landing pages, to drive traffic to the website
- Automated emails drip-fed to all new contacts as soon as they leave their contact information via the web form
- Automated emails drip-fed to all new contacts, once a new prospect is manually added to the contact database
- Linkedin social media campaign sending out ambient communications to support the overall programme
- A fully defined Lead Process detailing the Lead Acquisition and Lead Nurturing process
- Targeted adverts on LinkedIn, displaying relevant messages to all website visitors following their visit to the Vacuum Engineering Services website
- Lunch & Learn workshop to train all customer-facing staff on Best Practice techniques for generating new leads using LinkedIn
In addition we also provided access to over 400 tools, guides, templates, frameworks and videos to support the planning, implementation and knowledge transfer of Best Practice marketing, into Vacuum Engineering Services.
Our overall engagement with Vacuum Engineering was for an initial 12 months. The company has been so impressed with our scientific approach to the marketing process, that we have been requested to assist them with a rebrand, and to also redesign and develop their new website.