Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Marketing and Sales Strategies for Manufacturers

Today’s digital landscape offers a wider-than-ever array of marketing and sales strategy options and channels that can be overwhelming to manufacturers. Harnessing and culling these options to fit your strategy is challenging but critical to retaining your client base, attracting new customers, identifying new revenue streams, and growing your business.

MEP National Network experts will help you define your company’s best strategic position and devise a plan of communications, sales, and marketing tactics that will target customers efficiently to achieve maximum results. 

Experts from MEP Centers in every state and Puerto Rico offer the combination of marketing and sales management with manufacturing knowledge to address your resource constraints, industry challenges, and growth goals. From branding to lead generation, product promotion, and more, the MEP National Network can help you identify the right audiences, understand their behaviors and goals, engage them through compelling messaging and channels, and nurture each from prospect to long-term client.

Branding and Positioning 

Defining what differentiates you in a highly competitive industry is a critical first step in any marketing program. Rather than rely on price advantage, discover your core competencies—your value proposition or competitive advantage—through innovative products or services that uniquely address customer needs. 

The branding process will define your company’s competitive advantage and guide you in translating that into a compelling reason for new prospects and returning customers to work with you. 

Identifying that key differentiator and combining it with consistent visual marketing will create a marketing and sales program that presents your marketplace strength and speaks your customer’s language. Through branding, your company will:

  • Stand out from the crowd
  • Make efficient use of limited outreach resources
  • Connect with target markets
  • Convert prospects into customers

Branding takes any marketing program from a random list of activities into a coordinated, comprehensive, and maximally effective strategy for any business.

Market Segmentation, Messaging, and Planning

Savvy businesses take a targeted approach. They:

  • Focus their pitch on customers who are most likely to be interested
  • Craft their messages to compellingly address prospects’ needs, interests, and goals
  • Develop marketing plans that use multiple channels to deploy those messages to the right audiences

Finding those audiences that benefit from your value proposition and understanding those audiences is the function of market segmentation and messaging. This process not only makes your outreach efforts more efficient but also helps to reduce reliance on single streams of business by diversifying to new markets. 

The process will vary for each manufacturer, but a general process is to:

  • Identify your ideal customers—what matters to them, why they will benefit from your offerings, and where to find them.
  • Discover the business opportunities that align with your strategic plan, through product development, technology applications, new markets, and more. 
  • Combine positioning, tactics, and messaging to focus your efforts and limited resources for optimal returns with limited waste. 
  • Help you establish a program to measure results and better inform future marketing campaigns. 

Lead Generation, Cultivation, and Sales

Few business challenges compare to the urgency of growing a pipeline of sales opportunities. Without a steady flow of qualified prospects interested in your products and services and receptive to your sales message, you limit your ability to increase your top line.

MEP National Network sales experts work with manufacturers to help with any or all steps of the process, including:

  • Establishing and training the sales team
  • Setting up sales systems
  • Implementing marketing outreach tools
  • Cultivating and converting leads
  • Evaluating results to determine the best opportunities to repeat and grow

Website Development and Management

Your website is your company’s most important sales and marketing tool. It’s the first place many prospects and current customers will go to learn more about your offerings. If it’s not optimized, it can lead to a customer or prospect promptly heading elsewhere. 

Whether you’re setting up a new website or considering an update to an existing one, MEP Center website specialists have the knowledge to guide you through the process and consider important elements such as:

  • Site layout and design that reinforces your brand and messaging goals
  • Content creation to convert casual browsers into customers
  • A flexible and user-friendly technological platform that your team can easily monitor, update, edit, and improve to serve your business for several years
  • Search Engine Optimization and attention to keywords to ensure your site shows up in a wide range of searches
  • Mobile responsiveness for a smooth visitor experience on any device
  • Visitor experience to ensure they can find what they want and discover offerings and benefits they may not have expected
  • Calls-to-action so no visitor leaves your site without a chance to interact with you
  • Analytics you can understand and apply to continuously improve your site so it best supports your company’s marketing and sales goals and strategic objectives

The MEP National Network’s website specialists will ensure that you consider all the critical components—front-end, back-end, and analytical—that comprise a successful website. 

Digital Marketing

Email campaigns, social media, video marketing, online ads, and other digital tools are significant elements of any successful marketing program. Today’s digital landscape is saturated with messages that yours must compete against, and yet finding customers and prospects where they are—and “talking” to them often—is critical to staying relevant and active in the marketplace. Even the leanest marketing programs must utilize digital opportunities to generate awareness and interest, expand reach, and compete. 

Using digital marketing requires knowledge of the technology and latest trends as well as marketing savvy to efficiently put these tools to work for you. Below are key tips to remember.

  • Email marketing is only successful if you can transform marketing emails from rejected spam into website leads. 
  • Social media success relies on finding innovative ways to stay in the conversation while promoting your business. 
  • Video—from high-end production to quick phone captures—provides countless opportunities but must be planned and produced carefully to ensure success. 

Understanding the right number of posts or emails, when and how to jump into the online conversation, list management, content development, and analytics all require expertise that the MEP National Network digital marketing specialists provide to clients. 

The assistance defining and prioritizing our target market segments and the resources developed to understand the segments, has allowed us to be more effective with our outbound marketing tactics, positively impacting our sales and revenue numbers without a large increase in our marketing budget. 

 —Michael Windsor, CEO, CIC Powerbox, LLC
Read the Success Story



Manufacturing Reports


The news for the general economy may be mixed, but for manufacturers it's "all systems growth." Thomasnet's annual Industry Market Barometer® survey of North American manufacturers shows an upward trajectory for this sector, year after year, as they continue to lead the economy forward.

For more information or assistance with marketing and sales, please contact your local MEP Center.

 If you would like someone to contact you about marketing and sales, please complete the form below.

Required* Indicates required field
NIST will include and share your contact information in our information systems to enable us to manage interactions and relationships with you, our customer, and review how NIST provides products, services, and support.  We do this by aggregating customer data from a number of authorized NIST systems.  Your information will not be shared with information systems that are not authorized by NIST.



For General Information

  • MEP Headquarters
    (301) 975-5020
    100 Bureau Drive, M/S 4800
    Gaithersburg, MD 20899-4800
Created June 2, 2020, Updated June 5, 2024