Winton Machine Company implemented a content strategy with existing customers that has been a key driver of growth to date and is where the company expects the biggest future growth in revenue.
Winton Machine Company always understood the power of marketing. In 2001, long before websites were popular, George launched the company’s first website, writing the code himself. The Wintons invested heavily in professional photographers and videographers to help showcase their machines. And George wrote a technical column called,“Tech Talk” in the Tube & Pipe Journal for seven consecutive years; he is one of the few contributing authors not on staff to have a tenure lasting more than a few months. In fact, in 2000, the company made its first international sale to a client in South Korea, who had only discovered the company through the internet.
However, while its marketing was effective in sourcing new prospects and clients, Lisa realized they were missing an opportunity. As she succinctly said, “Your biggest opportunity to grow is with existing customers. The more machines you have out in the field, the more opportunities you have for growth.”
In 2015, the company invested in Salesforce. It needed a system that would allow it to better segment clients and launch a content strategy that would facilitate “a continuous touch with existing customers.” With so many different customer segments, it was important that the company share the right information with the right customers. As Lisa said, “I know how many emails I get in a day, and I get annoyed by them. I don’t want my customers to get information that is not useful to them.”
The new CRM platform dramatically improved Winton’s ability to market to customers, resulting in a significant jump in revenue. However, Lisa still faced one major hurdle: She couldn’t get the sales team to use the software appropriately. “We build these great automated, software-driven machines and yet we couldn’t utilize this software system to its full potential.”
A year ago, Lisa brought on a marketing intern to act as the Salesforce administrator. His role is to make sure data is entered the right way, the company is pulling accurate dashboards, and it is using the appropriate data to inform a more advanced content strategy. Lisa believes the company has barely touched the surface of what the platform can do to help grow its business.
When asked to reflect on the company’s overall approach, Lisa paused for a second and then drew an analogy. “It’s like the shoemaker who walks around in worn-out shoes. When you’re a manufacturer, it’s your job to solve problems for your customers. But how often do you look at yourself and ask ‘How do we become more efficient?’ Sometimes the answer is internal… not external.”