Have you ever wondered how some of today’s top manufacturers seem to gain industry stardom overnight? Companies such as Honest Company, PopSockets, and others are examples of manufacturers that quickly evolved from non-existent to industry sensations in a matter of a year or two. And while no two manufacturers are exactly alike, there are best practices to gaining success quickly. Here are six secrets of fast-growing manufacturers.
1) They always attend top industry trade shows
Trade shows offer a host of benefits to growing manufacturers. In addition to providing opportunities to get a sneak peek of the latest innovative developments in your industry, you can connect with prospects, vendors, and other relevant contacts. Here are four ways that trade show participation can arm you with the tools you need to thrive in your industry:
- You can learn how industry leaders are thriving
- You will see what products your competitors are showcasing
- You can demonstrate your latest cutting-edge products
- You will expand your network of connections
2) They use electronic invoicing
Electronic invoicing offers a host of benefits to companies. In addition to reducing expenses on papers products and printers, electronic invoicing helps you save on postage costs. But the benefits extend beyond cost savings and efficiency. Manufacturing companies that use electronic invoicing maintain a healthier cash flow. Customers can pay their invoices faster because they receive electronic invoices right away and can pay them online. Steady cash flow, in turn, provides capital to invest in new products, hire new staff, and fill the large orders that will make your business grow.
3) They use time tracking software
Introducing time tracking software is one of the best ways to boost awareness of your employees’ whereabouts while minimizing administrative busywork, and reducing the cost of expensive hardware. By eliminating the need for paper time sheets and data entry, time tracking software increases productivity by making employees accountable for their own timekeeping with a unique pin and reduces buddy punching with facial recognition.
Here are some other reasons why successful manufacturers are introducing time tracking software:
- Flexibility: The top time tracking software allows you to access information from any location using your favorite mobile device.
- Convenience: Employees and managers no longer have to worry about keeping track of paper time sheets and entering data.
- User-friendly: With free mobile apps for Android and iOS, software is easy to use and only requires a WiFi connection.
- Efficient: Software that features GPS tracking enables you to locate your nearest employee in a matter of seconds.
- Accounting Software Integration: Integrating time tracking software with accounting software such as QuickBooks and Sage saves up to 20% in administration time.
- Job Costing: Reporting on time tracked for similar projects will enable better job costing on future ones. Knowing where time is actually spent will save money on potential lost revenue.
4) They have a strong global presence
Today’s top manufacturers see the value in overseas business and emerging markets. They know which tasks can be safely outsourced to offshore providers to reduce costs. On the other side of the coin, they always have one eye open to international markets that are a good fit with their product mix and business model.
You rarely will see a fast-growing manufacturer refuse to ship their products to an overseas customer unless the customer is located in an embargoed country. On the contrary, successful manufacturers are driven to find cost-effective shipping solutions and service providers for their overseas customers. They also consider overseas power requirements and develop dual voltage products that will operate smoothly in countries with 220-volt power.
5) They have a stellar digital marketing strategy
Many of today’s fast growing manufacturers share one common thread: they have invested in their digital marketing campaigns. In most cases, they either seek the services of an accomplished digital marketing agency or they hire an experienced digital marketing specialist to develop successful initiatives. Here are some telltale signs of a stellar digital marketing strategy:
- An attractive, responsive website that is easy to navigate
- A robust content marketing strategy that features blog articles, white papers, and instructional videos
- A strong focus on search engine optimization (SEO)
- Multiple types of online advertising including pay per click, video advertising, and social media advertising
6) They take product certifications seriously
A strong commitment to quality is vital to manufacturing products that are safe, efficient, and durable. Fast-growing manufacturers never try to cut corners in the product quality arena. On the contrary, they take steps to ensure that their organizations and products are approved by key regulatory agencies. Here are a few examples:
- FDA: Marketing and selling your product to customers in America will be much easier if your company and products are FDA-approved
- ISO: ISO 9001 and 14001 certifications can help you gain traction on an international scale and help you participate in government tenders
- CE: A CE marking shows that a product meets health, safety and environmental standards mandated within the European Economic Area
- Industry Specific Regulations: In addition to national and international certifications, it is important to achieve compliance with industry-specific requirements. For instance, fast-growing medical device manufacturers often make sure their products comply with regulations set by the American Disability Association (ADA).
In addition to seeking these certifications, fast-growing manufacturers are continually improving their products and processes. They use measures such as internal audits, rigid quality control procedures, and ongoing training to ensure that products meet or exceed minimum industry requirements.
The Bottom Line
Success as a new manufacturer is not automatic. It requires a proactive approach, strategic planning, and a strong focus on efficiency. The qualities outlined above are examples of those that have helped new manufacturers rapidly gain market traction while competing companies seem to stagnate.
If you are interested in helping your new manufacturing company hit the ground running, the best step you can take is to start your business off on the patch to efficiency with trusted time tracking software. Time tracking is easy to introduce and is a fast, affordable way to save time and maximize your resources.
To experience the many benefits that time tracking software has to offer try Time Tracker risk-free for 14-days. You can cancel at any time and no credit card is required. Within a matter of minutes, your manufacturing company can be on the fast track to increased productivity and efficiency. We look forward to helping your company prosper!