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2017 Industrial Marketing Trends

Fri, Feb 17, 2017 @ 06:34 PM / by Chuck Lohre posted in Industrial Advertising, Branding and Identity, Business to Business Marketing, B2B Marketing, B2B Advertising, Business to Business Advertising, Advertising Literature, Graphic Design Agency, Cincinnati Design, Design Agency, Industrial Marketing Trends, Industrial Content Driven Marketing, B2B Sales Conversion Rates

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Industrial marketing is different for mining equipment, machine tools and chemical processing equipment. We'll review what is and isn't working in industrial marketing trends.

A short history of Lohre & Associates:

  • —1996 Second Wind, small agency coaching
  • —9-11-2001 The end of growth
  • —2002 Goal: More control over business growth
  • —2002 EDOC Outsourcing call center
  • —2004 Society for Marketing Professional Services (Engineers, Architects, Builders)
  • —2008 Recession, things got worse
  • —2009 Green Building initiative
  • —2013 Hubspot

Industrial Marketing Trends.jpg

Green Marketing - A Tough Market

  • —Two major LEED projects went way over budget.
  • —Market can’t cover our cost – ½ of what it needs to be.
  • —Few passionate residential or small business owners. One in a thousand.
  • —Large local food movement – Earth Day
  • —Commercial and institutional only, they are too large for us
  • —Still searching for a building material client
Green Industrial Marketing Trends.jpgHubspot is Good Internet Marketing
  • —Up to date internet marketing strategies
  • —Structured marketing framework
  • —Adaptable to industrial products & services
  • —Focused on “considered” sales process
  • —Excellent training
  • —Excellent coaches for clients & prospects
  • —Formal growth plan
Hubspot Industrial Marketing Trends.jpg
Does Blogging and Social Media Work?
  • —Post three times a week
  • —Share across Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn
  • —Follow Cocktail Party Rule, 1 for you, 2 for guests
  • —Keep it very educational & technical
  • —Monitor and interact with Social Media
  • —90% of internet content doesn’t get shared
  • —Google pays a lot of attention to a small amount of sharing and commenting
Social Media Industrial Marketing Trends.jpg
Hubspot Strategy Can Add Value
  • —The agencies that apply this sales process have been able to fundamentally change the way they sell
  • —Stop selling one off projects to selling to retainers
  • —Increasing the size of their retainers
  • —Retainers are capitalized income and the most valuable thing for an agency’s net worth
Construction-Industrial-Marketing-Trends.jpg
Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS)
  • —The best marketing methods for large expensive products or projects
  • —Starts with defining a real market need
  • —And then gives you the skills to fill that need
  • —Excellent for all licensed professionals such as lawyers, doctors, scientists, administrators, as well as architects, contractors and engineers
The biggest thing we have learned recently is that internet marketing isn't the best for industrial marketing communication firms. We have gotten one recent account from our web site, but more recently we have also gotten clients from referrals and targeted direct mail. So the most important thing for any company is to know what works for them.

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1937 Cincinnati Ohio River Flood Anniversary

Thu, Jan 26, 2017 @ 10:34 AM / by Chuck Lohre posted in Industrial Advertising, Branding and Identity, Business to Business Marketing, B2B Marketing, B2B Advertising, Business to Business Advertising, Advertising Literature, Graphic Design Agency, Cincinnati Design, Design Agency, Industrial Content Driven Marketing, B2B Sales Conversion Rates, 1937 Cincinnati Ohio River Flood

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Cincinnati Enquirer remembers the 1937 Flood.

"After unprecedented precipitation, the Ohio River in Cincinnati rose to its all-time high on Jan. 26, 1937. It was a natural disaster than spanned the entire length of the 981-mile-long river. Michael Nyerges." Read more.

1937_Enquirer600x884.jpg

One of the founders of our agency, Edmund Strauchen, did this illustration for the Enquirer that day.

 

 Januray 26, 1937 Cincinnati Ohio River Flood article

"River Near 80 Feet; Water Supply Low

Help Rushed

In Record Crisis

Rising Water Spread Through Ohio Valley

Refugee Total Leaps To 550,000 Mark

Red Cross Appeals For $4,000,000 "Chest"

Martial Law Proclaimed In Louisville - More Than 103,00 Listed As Homeless In Ohio

Flood tides of the Ohio River are the highest the valley has ever experienced - Monday night continued to advance over already paralyzed cities and smaller communities as Federal and state agencies rallied to cope with the greatest crisis the area ever has known

With crests of at least 80 feet; perhaps slightly more, forecast for the Ohio Valley from Huntington, W. Va., to Cincinnati, and with the already greatly distressed area from Cincinnati down to Cairo, Ill., waiting for additional rises, the only ray of hope Monday night was the fact that no rain had fallen for 24 hours and a forecast that there would be no more for at least 48 hours."


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Industrial Marketing for Engineering, Architecture and Construction

Tue, Jan 24, 2017 @ 09:25 AM / by Chuck Lohre posted in Industrial Advertising, Branding and Identity, Business to Business Marketing, B2B Marketing, B2B Advertising, Business to Business Advertising, Advertising Literature, Graphic Design Agency, Cincinnati Design, Design Agency, Industrial Content Driven Marketing, B2B Sales Conversion Rates

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Industrial marketing is different for machine tools and chemical processing equipment, but it's even stranger for engineering, architectural or construction services.

I learned of the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) back in 2005 when I asked Pete Strange, the president of Messer Construction, how I could get clients in building materials, construction and architecture. He said that SMPS was the best way to learn. I joined and served several years on the board of the local Cincinnati Chapter. The Certified Professional Services Marketer is the most valuable thing I have received from SMPS. It's a body of marketing knowledge and methods that is nothing like selling lipstick or rebar for that matter. Here's link to SMPS.org and a study guide to the certification.

Industrial-Marketing-Certified-Professional-Services-Marketer-CPSM.jpg

This blog is being written at an introductory class on the CPSM certification. I've been studying for the exam for over ten years now and this year is the year. They just republished the study guides and they are excellent. The thing I like the best is the first thing you are taught to do is marketing research. "Don't get into a market if it's not on an upswing," Donald Trump will tell you. Russ Sanford, one of the past presidents of the Chapter, needed a job and did his research. Northwest Canada needed hydroelectric services. So he pitched national firms and set up an office in the region. Today they have several projects in the works. A perfect example of putting the SMPS to work.

The unfortunate thing about my entry into the architectural world was that the market collapsed in 2009. Now the market has recovered, and it's time to get back to work. I went to Greenbuild last year and look forward to this year's event in Boston. I meet potential clients at major trade shows. Concentrating on companies that are headquartered in Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky.

 

Domains-of-Practice-Professional-Services-Marketing.jpg

Here are the Domains:

 

1. Marketing Research
2. Marketing Plan
3. Client and Business Development
4. Proposals
5. Promotional Activity
6. Information, Resource and Organizational Management


Marketing Research includes reading industry publications and monitoring industry related information. Today that means monitoring hashtags. There's even a section on forecasting trends.
Marketing Planning starts with a Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats analysis to creating a marketing plan and providing a progress report on the marketing plan. There is nothing frivolous;about this body of knowledge. You won't find speakers that tell you that you need to glob onto a social event to get your Tweet to go viral.

Client and Business Development is all about the people involved n an engineering project. This is where it departs from the marketing departments I've worked with, but it does teach you to pre-qualify a client and conduct client perception studies. 

Proposals is the most boring part for me. Industrial marketing as my Dad taught me was more personal chemistry than anything else. Creativity used to be more important. It still is but Google has made all of us analytical marketers. A major part of marketing in the AEC world is proposals and this domain will help anyone plan, organize and deliver complex projects with many moving parts.

Promotional Activity gets into the fun part of developing a brand and social media. "Social media is like teenage sex; everyone says they are doing it, but nobody does it well," Scott Hasson told me he learned at an American Marketing Association meeting. If you need a friendly hand to guide you through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, this is it. It wraps up with training your staff to deal with the media.

The last Domain, Management, will prepare you to manage a new business development department at your firm.

And that's the road to higher salaries and more job satisfaction.

Good luck with your studies and get in touch if you want to join our study group.

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B2B Sales Conversion Rates - Benchmark Research Finds Surprises

Mon, Jan 23, 2017 @ 07:57 PM / by Chuck Lohre posted in Industrial Advertising, Branding and Identity, Business to Business Marketing, B2B Marketing, B2B Advertising, Business to Business Advertising, Advertising Literature, Graphic Design Agency, Cincinnati Design, Design Agency, Industrial Content Driven Marketing, B2B Sales Conversion Rates

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Implisit analyzed the pipelines of hundreds of companies to discover the channels that deliver the highest conversion rate. Are you focusing on the right channels?

Nov 20, 2014 By in AnalyticsCloudFeaturedSales

B2B Sales Conversion Rates' processes are complex, with myriad stakeholders and prolonged decision cycles. That’s why it’s hard to know from the top of your head what’s working and what’s not. Fortunately, we have Salesforce, where we can track lead sources all the way to closing the deal.

At Implisit, we analyzed anonymous aggregated lead data from hundreds of companies to see what works and what doesn’t. Results are surprising: some channels are better at creating opportunities, but those opportunities are less likely to close; in other channels, it’s harder to create opportunities, but these opportunities are more likely to close.

 

 

B2B Sales Benchmark Research Finds Some Pipeline Surprises [INFOGRAPHIC]

 

Conversion Rate:
Lead to opportunity—13%; Opportunity to deal—6%

Overall, our analysis shows that on average, 13% of leads convert to opportunities and the average time for conversion is 84 days. Conversion rate from opportunity to deal is even lower — only 6% of opportunities convert to deals, but it takes only 18 days, on average, to convert.

The most important metric, leads to deal, shows one clear winner. 3.6% of employee and customer referrals convert to deals, higher than any other channel. This is followed by the company website and social. Among the worst performing channels are lead lists, events and email campaigns with less than 0.1% lead to deal conversion rate.

Another important insight is that employee and customer referrals, company websites and social also tend to have the fastest progression from lead to deal. It takes only 40 days, on average, to convert a lead coming from social to a deal. Website leads take around 75 days, and referrals take 97 days to convert. Lead lists, email campaigns trade shows, and webinars have the lowest conversion rate and the highest lead-time.

Webinars: only 2.5% opportunity to deal conversion rate

When we break the conversion rate into two parts — leads to opportunities and opportunities to deals — we see a few surprises. Webinars, for example, have the third-highest conversion rate from lead to opportunity (17.8%); however, it has one of the lowest conversion rates from opportunity to deal (only 2.5%). The company website has the highest conversion rate from lead to opportunity (31.3%), probably because sales reps are very optimistic when inbound inquiries are coming from the website. However, only 5% of website opportunities actually end up as closed-won.

Company Events: mostly closed-lost opportunities

Another interesting insight is the ratio of closed-won versus closed-lost opportunities. It seems that some channels deliver opportunities that consistently fail to convert to deals. Less than 20% of company events, lead lists, and partner referrals end up as closed-won. This is especially surprising — sales reps only open opportunities after they qualify leads. Still, even after qualification, it seems that these channels hardly produce opportunities with the potential to close.

Conclusion

In the complex B2B sales process, some channels deliver consistently better performance than others. The global winners are employee and customer referrals, company websites, and social. Outbound channels such as lead lists, company events, and email campaigns tend to have the lowest performance. It seems that closing a deal is as much about where the lead came from as it is about salesmanship.

2014-11-10 Benchmarks Infographic (2)

About the Author:

DSCF0363_1Gilad Raichshtain is the founder & CEO of Implisit. Intel recruited Gilad who, at 16 was their youngest engineer at the time. Concurrently, Gilad completed his computer engineering studies at Technion, Israel's Institute of Technology. After 6 years at Intel, Gilad joined the Israeli Prime Minister's Office and founded several startups. Gilad received his MBA from the Wharton School of Business, where he also managed Wharton Ventures. Additionally, as Genacast Ventures' investment team member, a Comcast partnership, Gilad supported several portfolio companies, three of which were later acquired—two by Google and one by Adobe.

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Plan for an Industrial Content Driven Marketing campaign

Fri, Jan 20, 2017 @ 04:54 PM / by Chuck Lohre posted in Industrial Advertising, Industrial Branding, Branding and Identity, Construction Equipment Marketing, Business to Business Marketing, B2B Marketing, B2B Advertising, Advertising, Advertising Design, Business to Business Advertising, Graphic Design Agency, Advertising Agency, Industrial Content Driven Marketing

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Consumer media is getting very fractured, but industrial content driven marketing is still led by a few quality publishing houses. 

Sure you can spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on full page ads every month in your industrial trade publications. But you wouldn't be taking advantage of the invitation to supply educational and application articles to the publication as well. Industrial marketing is a partnership between you and the industrial publishing houses. And that includes trade shows as well. The best publishing companies also have the best shows.

 Industrial-Content-Marketing.jpg

 

But don't start your Industrial Content Driven Marketing by dropping your advertising programs. Sure industrial engineers use the Internet to find products and services but most times they aren't looking for cheap high volumes. LinkedIn Groups can't reach the audience a good industrial trade journal can. They have been at it for generations and even though many of them are getting slim they are getting better at serving up great content online. It is sort of like asking a 60 year old to start dating again but they are. Google wants to serve up the best results for their searchers and the vetted trade journals are the best. You can't find manufacturing engineering as a company description on Facebook. They keep asking us to change our client's descriptions to "Local Service."

So trim your advertising budget down to three placements a year in the top two or three publications and also make a commitment to provide two or three articles. They will cost you several thousand dollars each but they will be the gift that keeps on giving. If they rank well on the internet you can also promote them with Google, Bing or LinkedIn Adwords or Sponsored Content. Better yet tie your advertising to your content.

Industrial-Content-Driven-Marketing.jpg

The featured image in this blog post is the advertisement that promotes the technical article above. The article also goes on the client's website. Ads today are like landing pages on the internet. They are to promote a piece of content. How Hubspot would like you to get folks to exchange their email address for that content but that is much harder to achieve. Still, you can track how many visitors come to your site from the ads and content. And then adjust your media buy next year. 

And that sums up what's happening in the industrial marketing world. Publications are trying to migrate over to being completely digital not because they want to but because their readers are dying off. The editorial teams will continue to rule the content world, now we just have to find a way to pay them.

 

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Economical, Custom, Modular Motors and Drives

Fri, Jan 13, 2017 @ 01:40 PM / by Chuck Lohre posted in Industrial Advertising, Industrial Branding, Branding and Identity, Construction Equipment Marketing, Business to Business Marketing, B2B Marketing, B2B Advertising, Graphic Design, Advertising Design, Business to Business Advertising, Advertising Literature, Graphic Design Agency, Cincinnati Design, Design Agency, Advertising Agency

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ABM motors and drives are tailor-made specifically for the application whether it requires compact design, low-noise operation or maximum operating safety.

A flexible modular design system allows cost-effective low volume production runs. Custom motors and drives are available for a wide range of application types: forklifts, electric vehicles, lifting technology, biomass heating systems, textile machines, wind power control, warehouse logistics, high-speed doors, air compressors, construction equipment, packaging machinery and vehicle-inspection equipment. The high overall efficiency of ABM Drive helical and parallel shaft gearboxes reduces power input and energy consumption.

ABM-Drives-Economical-Custom-Motors-and-Drives-1.jpg

All products are engineered in-house. Components that represent a core competence are reliably produced in-house on state-of-the-art machine systems. This guarantees that electric motors, gearboxes, brakes and electronics are perfectly coordinated. Vertical integration of ABM Drive manufacturing includes tool-and-die engineering and aluminum die-casting to guarantee best implementation and integration of components to a compact drive unit. High-quality gearing guarantees quiet operation. Tight-fitting housing covers and flanges prevent distortions that can amplify noise. Aluminum housings absorb harmonics and other vibrations better than cast iron. 

A large center distance between the motor centerline and the hollow drive shaft centerline gives the application designer more freedom/clearance to integrate the unit into the application. Many layouts are possible, from integration of the motor into the gearbox housing, U mounting of the motor, to customizing the output shaft. The end result is a true plug-and-play motor and drive-unit solution designed to save time and money.

ABM DRIVE INC. engineers and manufacturers high-performance motor, gearbox, brake and frequency inverter solutions for machines, plants and mobile devices in hoisting technology, warehousing, material handling, electric vehicles, biomass heating systems, wind turbines and many other markets. Founded in 1927, the company belongs to the senata Group with an annual turnover of nearly 400 million € and more than 2,000 employees. Approximately 300,000 drive units are produced annually. In-house manufacturing includes tool-and-die design, aluminum-casting foundry, CNC housing machining, manufacturer of shafts, cutting of gear teeth, motor development technology, assembly and final testing.

PRESS CONTACT
ABM DRIVE INC.
Gabriel Venzin, President
394 Wards Corner Road, Suite 110, Loveland, OH 45140
Phone: 513 576 1300
Mobile: 513 332 7256
Website: www.abm-drives.com
E-mail: gabriel.venzin@abm-drives.com

AGENCY

Lohre & Assoc., Inc., Marketing Communications

Chuck Lohre, President
126A West 14th Street, 2nd Floor, Cincinnati, OH 45202-7535
Phone: 877-608-1736, 513-961-1174, Fax 513-961-1192
Mobile: 513-260-9025
Email: chuck@lohre.com

Reprinting permitted - specimen copy requested

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"Designing B2B Brands" - B2B Branding Lessons Update

Thu, Dec 29, 2016 @ 04:56 PM / by Chuck Lohre posted in Industrial Advertising, Industrial Branding, Branding and Identity, Construction Equipment Marketing, Business to Business Marketing, B2B Marketing, B2B Advertising, Graphic Design, Advertising Design, Business to Business Advertising, Advertising Literature, Graphic Design Agency, Cincinnati Design, Design Agency, Advertising Agency

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Branding lessons from Deloitte and 195,000 brand managers, by Carlos Martinez Onaindia & Brian Resnick. 

For our last post of 2016 we'd like to update our third most popular blog post ever. This book still stands out as the best B2B Branding Lessons we have ever seen. Get in touch if you would like a free copy.

Designing B2B Brands.jpg

Carlos Martinez Onaindia & Brian Resnick worked for Deloitte while writing the book.

Hubspot included Deloitte and GE websites in one of its promotional blog posts and we recognize them as a good examples of industrial marketing communications design. It's great news that we can go into more detail with one of our choices.

Designing B2B Brands, Ten Laws resized 600

Number 9. "Always be closing" is close to our heart; it emphasizes the objective of marketing communications. "Every communication should focus on achieving your end goal, and the audience should feel good about, or at least comfortable with, that result," perfectly sums up landing pages and calls-to-action.

Designing B2B Brands, Proposals resized 600

This chart brings to light some of Deloitte's strategies: "2. Understand - Get under the skin of the client and use the opportunity to better Deloitte's comparative competitive position, 4. Interact - Take every opportunity to demonstrate our credentials, improve our understanding and test The Deloitte Difference with the client, 8. Capitalize - Make the most of your investment by debriefing the team and the client, learning from what the client tells us, and developing on ongoing strategy to win work from the client." These strategies can be put to use for industrial equipment selling as well.

Designing B2B Brands, Executive Champions resized 600

This chart illustrates how a company's strategy's affects the message, "Lead by example, as their (executives) decisions have a direct impact on brand legacy and will ripple throughout the organization."

Feintool Achieve More With Less resized 600

Heinz Loosli, CEO of Feintool International Holding discusses the strategic advantage of Feintool in this interview for its customer magazine. In response to a question about the company's recovery from the automotive industry decline in 2009, he answers, "We brought new, innovative products to market, we have played more to our strengths and in doing so achieved some great successes in the market. We have also improved our ability to complete by implementing measures to increase efficiency. It is important to appreciate that it is not a case of one-off actions but ongoing commitment that will ensure our company has a successful future. The motto is: achieve more with less. We are constantly working on this..." This statement reflects both the company's equipment's strategic advantages but also good business practices. Feintool's metal part-making equipment takes plate steel and produces parts that are assembly ready without post machining. Their machines achieve more with less material and processing -- Loosli is using the same analogy for the company's management practises. You can download the entire Feintool magazine here. For the North American edition, Lohre & Associates wrote two articles, edited and printed the publication here in Cincinnati. We are honored to work with Feintool's Cincinnati offices and we feel the company's marketing communications are equal to Deloitte's.

Barry Salzberg's opening message for the book brings to light a similar focus, "There are 195,000 professionals around the world actively shaping the Deloitte identity on a daily basis. Brand-building of that scale requires a relentless focus on a unified vision and shared values, alongside a dynamic culture. There's tremendous opportunity if you get this right."

Heather Hancock, Global Managing Partner, Brand, defines Deloitte's businesss this way: "Deloitte is an advisory business whose brand relies on the daily actions of nearly 200,000 people in more than 150 countries being connected and reflecting the sane core commitments. We connect our people and our brand in myriad ways, always informed by a deep understanding of the marketplace and our clients' needs. And we take the long view, remaining committed to the task at hand whilst building value for our clients and our own firm long into the future. It delivers us client and personal growth, risk insulation and trust."

Designing B2B Brands, Faith The chart on the left gives insight to the reasons an industrial brand is of value: reputation, risk mitigation, client-building, loyalty and pride leads to the correlation between targeted brand investment and growth rate. Deloitte's business is deep market understanding to solve client problems. In a way industrial equipment is the same, the equipment is engineered to be an effective way for a company to be in business. Every company has to continually evolve to meet market changes, employee education and financial obligations. Deloitte is in the business of communication; many businesses are in the business of delivering a product. For a manufacturing company to understand the value of brand, it has to have an extremely clear understanding of the technology, engineering, economics of the market and the future. Every component in a machine tells the history of the company's brand. Someone at every company knows that story and that is where the brand starts.


We'll continue to look for branding examples that manufacturing company's can use to improve their marketing communications. If you get in touch to review your brand, we'll send you the Kindle version of this book. You'll enjoy it!

We can't begin to include all the great graphical information and examples in this review. The book covers every conceivable graphic problem and the solutions, meant more for the marketing communications manager of a company than the chief executives. In this review we wanted to climb to the 10,000-foot view of branding that often gets lost when you're manufacturing industrial equipment. But it does apply and Deloitte does a great job.

Hopefully GE will come out with a similar edition, they are in the machinery business! Writing those specifications and creating 3 views to make the brand come alive is what we do every day.

HOW Magazine introduced us to this 2013 book published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., it's about Deloitte's branding and its implementation throughout the organization. We saw an ad on HOW's website.

If you liked this post you may also enjoy:


Manufacturing Industrial Brand Marketing

lead gen ebook resized 125

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All Those Little Things You Do, (Metalworking Equipment Marketing Workflows)

Tue, Jan 26, 2016 @ 01:47 PM / by Chuck Lohre posted in Metalworking Equipment Marketing, Business to Business Marketing, B2B Marketing, B2B Advertising, Cincinnati Marketing Agencies, Equipment Marketing and Advertising, Business to Business Advertising, marketing agency

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(Thanks to Bob for another insightful post. Just last night I did a process equipment marketing review of Chemical Processing's ads for Readex and reviewed the Emerson ad for "Project Certainty." Eye catching ad but I can't believe their claims. What could possibly "look differently" at my rock crushing plant project and replace the 1000 years of experience going into its design. Not to say modern analysis capabilities maybe could help but they are going to have to tell me a little bit more than, "innovate." Plotting the human mind work flow was impossible just a few years ago. Mainly because what ever idea we came up with was proved wrong by science. Now the science is catching up. Look out, someone's going to find out that we only work half the time!)

 

Jan 15, 2016   Foundry Management and Technology Editor's Note.

The prospect of an economy driven by millions of free agents ‘working’ on an as-stipulated basis is fascinating, frightening, and slightly preposterous

Discussions about globalization and the effects of a unified industrial and consumer economy used to be a sure-fire topic for a white paper or a seminar, or a column. Whether you thought globalization would be a blessing (e.g., for investors, consumers) or a burden (i.e., for manufacturers), the topic remained evergreen because globalization always was treated as a proposition, some future state, an approaching reality.

But globalization is the reality now, and discussing it can be rather boring. Metalcasters and other manufacturers know well that some competitor 12 time zones away can cut into their customer base. They know too that keeping a work order or winning new business means their products must conform to the global standards for precision, consistency, and reliability. So, what else is new? Globalization is just not so fascinating as it once seemed.

Everyone who predicted globalization would be good or bad was generally correct, though there was a third outcome (unpredicted as nearly as I can recall) – and that is that globalization has magnified trivialities and highlighted what is unknown. Sorting and classifying information, determining what is important and the relative importance of different factors has become as critical to the success of an organization as design skill, production efficiency, or customer relationships.

So, the continuing legacy of globalization may be the parallel growth of data analysis – the eternal search for some new detail that can be exploited to improve results, avoid failure, or alter some situation in a way that can be exploited to make a business more competitive. This too is a part of how we approach our work. It’s the reason that FM&Tcan devote the first issue of each year to ideas and trends across the breadth of metalcasting operations, from design to finishing. There are established standards for carrying out all these processes, but the possibilities exist – in the minds of innovators, in the collaboration of designers and operators — that processes can be improved, and finished parts can be better.

Translating ideas into action is a seminar leader’s way of describing ‘work’, those things that individuals do to gain income, to solve problems, to fill their time, and frequently just to satisfy their own curiosity. Some work better than others, and that seemingly obvious fact has lately become a discussion topic, too. In the year-end rush of forecast topics sent for my evaluation were no less than four alerts about the role of the individual in the workplace. You and I may not realize it, but they’re watching what we do, and classifying it as data for evaluation.

Among the trends to watch in 2016, apparently, will be an emphasis on ‘remote’ business, a new reliance on independent consultants in place of managers and executives, more opportunities for temporary or free-lance workers to replace regular employees, and wider use of automation systems and devices to manage repetitive, complex, or risky tasks.

This list makes clear that assigning value to individuals’ work is not really intended to reward the individuals but to optimize the value.

Of course, in the same way that globalization once provided something for everyone to love or hate, the prospect of an economy driven by millions of free agents ‘working’ on an as-stipulated basis is fascinating, frightening, and slightly preposterous. That does not mean it will not influence how we approach the projects and prospects we face.

It may, however, force us to reckon with the reality that ideas, innovations, insights (call these data points whatever you wish … they are invaluable) are invariably connected to individuals. We cannot have the one without embracing the other. The work that you and I do each day is important, but not as important as the fact that we are the ones that do it.

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Chemical Processing Readex Research Response for Process Equipment Marketing Effectiveness

Mon, Jan 25, 2016 @ 11:37 PM / by Chuck Lohre posted in Process Equipment Marketing, Business to Business Marketing, B2B Marketing, B2B Advertising, Cincinnati Marketing Agencies, Equipment Marketing and Advertising, Business to Business Advertising, marketing agency, Industrial Marketing Agency

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Dear Chemical Processing Reader:

To better understand your needs and preferences regarding the products and services you may use, Chemical Processing has asked Readex Research to conduct a brief survey of its readers.

As a sincere thanks for your participation, once you have completed the simple survey, you can enter into a drawing for a $50 Visa gift card that can be used like cash anywhere Visa is accepted.

We are expecting a limited number of responses so your odds in the drawing are very good.

To complete the online survey, please visit the following website address:

http://www.readexweb.net/cp/survey.asp?xmvvghhdl

All your answers will be kept completely confidential and will not be used for any other purpose.

Thank you for sharing your opinions.

Sincerely,

Angela Thorson
Project Director
Readex Research

Process Equipment Marketing Image

Eye catching ad but I can't believe their claims. What could possibly "look differently" at my rock crushing plant project and replace the 1000 years of experience going into it's design. Not to say modern analysis capabilities maybe could help but they are going to have to tell me a little bit more than "innovate."

Process Equipment Marketing Image 2
So BASF makes catalysis. With thousands of engineers. I hope they are using their good will running this ad to get major articles printed in CP. I've seen their great writing. This ad doesn't do it justice.

VEGA Process Equipment Marketing Image
We love VEGA. Even though they are a home boy and I grew up drawing their instruments. I toured their facility lately and personally learned the complexities of pressure differential measurement. This ad does a good job of explaining the features and benefits.

Iowa Process Equipment Marketing Image
We like this ad. Don't know much about selecting states to move facilities to but it states the facts. Once again, expensive display advertising doesn't work in a vacuum. It's an invitation to contribute to the publication and I hope they did.

 Omega Process Equipment Marketing Image
Basic line ad. Show images of the product so they will catch the eye of the reader when they are looking for that and clearly define the product. Good job. Now write a good application article.

IEP Process Equipment Marketing Image
Great ad. We just wrote a piece that included this information. They aren't lying. And it sounds good enough to contact them. Thanks.

TLV Process Equipment Marketing Image
The best yet! Very clear, great copy that reads like a mystery novel. It shows the product, shows the readout and shows it in use. All without being hard to read or cluttered. We would be hard pressed to improve this ad. Thanks.

Vac-u-Max Process Equipment Marketing Image
Good basic ad about the company and it's capabilities. It's hard to focus on just one message but that would improve this communication if they could focus on the one message that might move a market.

RedGuard Process Equipment Marketing Image
Hmmm. No message. No facts. Nothing. If you know who they are you might get a laugh. I hope they just published the definitive explosion proof buildings and safety solutions article in CP.

Sharpe Process Equipment Marketing Image
We're getting down into the 1/3rd page ads. Good as you can, show the product, list the features and hope the reader understands the benefits.

Brookfield Process Equipment Marketing Image
Boy we wish there was some way to visually explain the measurement process (it sounds like it's unique) and have the instrument look small and easy to use. We'll sleep on it and may add something later. 

Dynamic Process Equipment Marketing Image
Lots of great ideas here. Too many. Maybe tie the words "Unload, Convey, Weigh and Mix to the photos with cutaways that show the operation detail. Just a thought. A good line ad.

Material Process Equipment Marketing Image
Good line ad. Clear photos and captions. They don't try to pack too much in.

Operational Process Equipment Marketing Image
Tough subject. Maybe a face and a testimonial might help.

Masa Process Equipment Marketing Image
We great. Did you know we were great? Did we tell you we were great!

That's all folks. Can't wait until the next survey.

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Mobile-Friendly Website Design with an Image-Based Menu

Mon, Jan 25, 2016 @ 09:16 AM / by Myke Amend posted in Internet Marketing, Process Equipment Marketing, Website Design, B2B Advertising, Internet Design and Development, Graphic Design, Cincinnati Web Design Agency, Cincinnati Advertising, Internet Development, Advertising Design, Cincinnati Advertising Agency, Advertisement Design, Cincinnati Website Design, Advertising Agency, Web Design

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When Lohre and Associates began this project, Roto-Disc, Inc. had a standard HTML web site that they liked, as much as we did, for a number of good reasons:

  • It was built to reflect the look and feel of Roto-Disc's product catalog about as closely as could be done with a website. It matched Roto-Disc's catalogue so very well that the site itself felt like well-designed and well-planned literature.
  • Pages were designed, not as a whole in cookie-cutter fashion, but for their purpose. Much like a printed brochure, everything was cohesively-branded as one well-collected work - yet each individual page was custom-tailored to best-present the products and services on that page.
  • The existing outline was near-perfect. Divisions between pages and topics were pretty spot-on, easy to navigate and easy to follow.

Web Design for Rotodisc CincinnatiAbove: The standard HTML site that was.

It was however, as sites made years ago tend to be: static in size and format, with no mobile menus or even alternate mobile version, and no CMS or other way to dynamically-generate new content - all of which we know to be a problem today for these reasons:

  • Google now gives better indexing for mobile-friendly sites, and penalizes sites that do not have mobile-friendly design or versions.
  • Engineers and other decision-makers in the Process Industry cannot easily view these sites while they are out in the field, which is about the time that needs for new equipment tend to arise or happen to be revealed.
  • Sites not viewed by mobile users do not get shared by mobile users, who make up for an increasingly-large percentage of internet viewers.
  • Sites that are blogs, WIKIS, or otherwise CMS-driven, have a sizable SEO advantage over most sites that are not. Growing content and fostering inbound links are incredibly-important to SEO. Blogs also enable a company to position itself as an industry leader, and give them the tools to build and maintain better customer relationships.

Another need to consider was that Roto-Disc's Product line would soon be expanding. In addition to the Heavy-Duty Spherical Valves, Lighter-Weight Spherical Valves, Sanitary Spherical valves, Inflatable Seal Spherical Valves, Heavy-Duty Clean Flow Diverters, and Airlock/Double-Dump Valves Roto-Disc already had a new section for Flange Adaptors, Wedge Inserts, and Stub Adaptors that needed to fit into the current image-based menu. Soon Roto-Disc would need to also add Process Transitions, and Splitters/Convergers, as well as the Flange Adaptors to this small swatch of internet real-estate.

From This We Created A Short List of Initial Project Goals:

  • Emulate the general look and feel of Roto-Disc's catalog, which we had recently updated for the new product line.
  • Preserve the image-based menu and allow for more menu items to be added.
  • Make their site completely responsive and mobile-friendly.
  • Make navigating and reading the site easy for *all* sizes: large screens, smartphones, *and* tablets.
  • Build it as a CMS (Wordpress in this case) for blogging, scaleable SEO, Inbound Marketing, and ease of content editing.
  • Include the best SEO plugins available so that the SEO approach can be updated for new search rules and algorithms.

Which Enabled Us to Build This List of Challenges:

  • The new catalog was rich with very in-depth charts for most every product. Some of these would require tables with at least 15 columns. Large tables are very difficult to display on mobile devices and harder still to display in a size and format that is easy to read and does not require scrolling or turning the device to horizontal view.
  • We wanted the image-based menu to look good on desktop systems, and did not want to lose it to a simple mobile menu at tablet and mobile sizes.
  • The image-based menu would require dropdowns so that viewers would have direct access to the spefic product information they were looking for.
  • We needed dropdown menus to work for desktop, laptop, tablet, and smartphones. Since touch devices do not have a hover state for links, we needed to make the menu expand and contract when clicked, not moused over. This was a major consideration when it came to tablet users, because the image would present somewhat like the desktop version, but with no mouseover capabilities.
  • We wanted to preserve the image menus even in the mobile version if possible.
  • Having "sticky" always-on-top navigation is always nice when it comes to desktops and laptops - We wanted to find a way to do this for both the header and standard navigation, as well as the image navigation. We wanted to do this without these items completely consuming the available viewport. We also wanted the sticky image menu to not be sticky on tablets because of limited space.
  • For tablet users who would lose this sticky navigation, we needed alternatives, such as an easy way to return to the navigation and/or adding navigation also to the footer of the pages.

Our Solutions:

Web Design /Website Design for RotoDisc Cincinnati

Wide-open: The site design is based on the Brochure, but made for web, driven by Wordpress, with an image menu plugin for ease of editing the image-based menu.

Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

An Additional Consideration: For Desktop users, the image links display an instruction when moused over, letting them know that clicking will open and close the submenu (though the submenu will go also away on its own when no longer in focus).

Mobile-friendly Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

The benefits of using a plugin and not hard-coding this aspect: All of the above menu and Submenu items can be added, removed, or edited through the control panel.

Mobile-friendly Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc, Cincinnati

Two Sticky Menus in motion: The Image menu slides up onto the header when the page is scrolled, and stays - leaving the most important items of both sets of navigation always at the top of the screen for easy access.

Mobile version of Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

Not so sticky: On smaller-sized screens not quite small-enough for the mobile menu the image menu items switch size to fall into three rows of three icons. The menu no longer sticks at the top so that content can be seen when scrolling.

Web Design / Website Design Tables for Rotodisc Cincinnati

Large Tables: These charts do not seem like they will fit well on a smaller screen... especially not on mobile, not even in landscape aspect. What can be done?

Mobile width view of Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

AHA! Jquery to the rescue: By rotating the table header text 90% and re-scaling those cells accordingly, we have a LOT more space to work with when presenting these tables on mobile devices. No scrolling necessary. Some strategic line-breaking in the product number column and Viola!

Mobile width view 2 of Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

The Mobile Menu: It seems as though the image menu has been lost... and that would be sad. ... but we can do better!

Mobile width view of Nav menu for Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

Huzzah!: There is that image menu again, not lost afterall.

Mobile menu of Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

The "Open/Close" Instructions: They are pointless here, because you cannot mouseover on a tablet or other mobile device, but they won't be seen for this reason. Plus: They are still handy if you like keeping your browser window very small.

Mobile menu view for Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

Tricky: Submenus on an image menu in a mobile menu. I can't think of any place I have seen this before - actually *many* aspects of this project were something completely new.

Mobile width view 3 of Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

Falling in line: Divs and most tables break apart - images set themselves to fill the viewport, and horizontal content becomes vertical in order to keep images large enough to view, also keeping text from being crammed awkwardly on the smaller screen.

Below: You'll notice the menu does not stick to the top in mobile view. Sticky menus on mobile, especially for sites with many pages, are not a good idea. If the menu extends beyond the viewport, and does not scroll - then the only part of the menu that can be accessed is the part at the top of the screen. This will leave visitors stuck and incredibly frustrated. You can in some cases make another scrollbar just for the navigation, but if it is not seen visitors will think they have arrived at a broken site and move on.

Mobile width view 4 of Web Design / Website Design for Rotodisc Cincinnati

Guide to Web Site Redesign by Cincinnati Website Design Company, Lohre & Associates

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