In a recent discussion with Randy MacLean of WayPoint Analytics, we examined the changing realities of messaging and marketing, and how things are changing so quickly. In the distribution industry, the need to communicate with your market hasn’t changed, but the avenues of communication and the audience have changed, giving rise to a lot of us wondering how to create the right marketing message.  You only have a few seconds to grab a buyer’s attention. Here’s how to do that successfully.


Increasingly, Millennials are the buyers and decision-makers. Understanding this demographic is incredibly important because you will be marketing to their needs, wants, and habits.

Millennials are to-the-point, move quickly, and vastly prefer electronic communication – they’re not interested in a face-to-face sit-down. To create the right marketing message to hit this target audience, demonstrate that you understand them – who they are, what they need, and what their problems and challenges are. If you’re not positioned to solve their problem, they’re off to find someone who is.

The right marketing messages will build credibility, trust, and rapport with your reader. Building this connection is done differently today than it was done in the past, mostly due to the change in the audience and advances in technology.

In the past, an individual salesperson’s one-on-one relationship with the buyer played a key role in your company’s success. Millennials often aren’t interested in individual sales relationships. Because of their hesitancy to meet face-to-face or even speak on the phone to your reps, it’s up to your marketing team to build and maintain rapport with these customers on behalf of your company by consistently demonstrating value through the messaging they put forth.

Quality content that addresses a buyer’s need or pain point is the way to connect with your market. It provides a baseline of trust and authority in that you’re solving their problems but asking for nothing in return. Data and market research identify what information buyers and decision-makers already have and where the gaps in their knowledge are – and those gaps are the opportunity for your content to demonstrate the value and social proof of your solution to their problem or need.

Keep in mind that internal data won’t tell you where the market is going. Constantly solicit feedback from your customers.

This data will tell you how to serve your market better than anyone else and give you knowledge about what your customers want, what they need, and what is most important to them.

The feedback collected from customers will provide you with three critical resources:

  1. Usable data for your marketing which provides evidence and social proof
  2. Opportunities for continuous internal process improvement
  3. Objective knowledge about the market and your customers’ perspectives

To be successful, collecting and processing feedback has to be a true priority. Constant touches and communication enable you to find out where customers are, how happy they are, what their key drivers are, and how well you’re meeting their needs.