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Why Hire an Industrial Marketing Specialist? | Manufacturing Marketing

Why Hire an Industrial Marketing Specialist?

Why hire an industrial marketing specialist?

A deeper understanding of any process, gained through experience, will provide a better end result.

Explicit knowledge is that which can be described and documented. It is shareable and now easily transmitted from one person to another. Successful companies make as much of their operation as explicit as possible, because documenting institutional memory is critical to long term success.

Tacit knowledge, on the other hand, is that which is known but unstated. Tacit is a result of experience – knowing what, how and why gained through constant trial and error experience.

What has all of this got to do with industrial marketing?

The business-to-business (B2B) world relies upon tacit knowledge to a much greater extent than the business-to-consumer (B2C). Understanding why someone needs a coffee maker requires less knowledge than, for example, a traveling gantry hydraulic straightening press. Effective marketing requires the ability to “know” what challenges the B2B consumer is trying to solve. The story of your product must address their challenge in order to be considered.

For marketing to be effective, it must relate to both the buyer and seller. To create visual and written messages which convey more than what is stated requires an understanding, a tacit knowledge, of the subject and audience. Explicit marketing is ultimately accurate but misses a deeper level of communication.

We all have an intuition which recognizes when someone truly knows what they are proposing, compared to someone who is repeating facts. A true specialist has spent the time to gain an understanding of what is important. They know the “why.” The reason a specialist is worth a potentially higher overall fee is that they provide the benefit of their intuition, their tacit knowledge. Your improved result will outweigh the added cost.

A non-marketing story which illustrates this difference was related by my brother, a journeyman machine builder. He was perfecting a process and had chosen a speed and feed rate which he “knew” was optimal, given the material being used. A young engineer without production experience challenged him, as he “knew” the machine would run faster and result in greater overall production. “Just turn it up.”

The problem was that the faster rate resulted in much greater tool wear. The downtime for a tooling change negated any gains from the greater speed and increased the overall cost of the operation. The engineer’s explicit knowledge was technically correct, but lacking the understanding gained through experience his end result would have been more costly. A journeyman’s tacit knowledge allowed him to see aspects not considered and to improve the final outcome.

A process or position which requires a level of experience relies upon tacit knowledge. Between economic challenges and an aging workforce, the industrialized Western world is facing a monumental challenge in retaining “how” this world works. Given the opportunity, choose a specialist. They will ask better questions, provide better answers and see aspects of your industrial operation which you hadn’t previously considered.

photo credit: dollen via photopin cc

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