Marketing Tips for Private Label Cleaning Chemical Companies
- March 20, 2023
#1 Build Your Brand
All the things that affect how customers feel about a company–the name, the messaging, the personality, the positioning (e.g. budget vs. luxury)–are summed up as its brand.
With your business being cleaning chemicals, the range of feelings you can evoke is going to be relatively narrow. Thus, you’ll have to determine how to craft an identity and separate your business from your competitors on practical grounds, such as:
- Performance: Does your cleaner work better than others?
- Pricing: Does your cleaner offer better value-in-use?
- Service: Is your cleaner always delivered on time and in pristine condition?
- Support: Do you offer unparalleled customer service and/or free, useful advice and materials (ebooks, blog posts, etc.?)
Although any size company can do it, private labeling is especially appealing to small- and mid-size companies because it removes the barriers to entry for a particular niche. In the context of cleaning chemicals, while a company may have extensive experience in the sector, it may lack the assets, available capacity, or technical and operational capabilities to effectively commercialize its private label products.
If that rings true for your business, take a look at our advice on how to make a name for yourself and create demand for your privately labeled cleaning chemicals.
Example: ProBlend’s “Beyond Clean” Slogan
Seatex brand ProBlend distinguishes itself from other cleaning chemical producers by highlighting its above-and-beyond level of service, which it calls going “beyond clean.” The brand offers distributor partners in-person training sessions, an online tech portal, extensive product literature and marketing videos, and more.
Rounding Out Your Ethos
Once you identify what makes your company or product unique, tangible brand aspects such as your logo, color scheme, font, and iconography can start to come together. Creating a style guide is the best way to ensure consistent messaging on both internal and external communications.
More abstract branding elements such as your mission, vision, and values should become clear, as well.
#2 Utilize Marketing Tools Provided by the Manufacturer
If you have the bandwidth, developing your own marketing materials is ideal, allowing you to retain creative and branding control over how your product is presented. However, there are likely to be ready-made materials available for your use from your manufacturer, GPO, or redistributor. Any of these may also be able to collaborate with you to create new materials for your product(s).
These can include:
- product catalogs
- sell sheets showing product benefits and features
- safety data sheets (SDS)
- user guides
- training or promotional videos.
Example: Seatex Private Label Support
We have a robust in-house graphics department that supports distributor customers with eye-catching label design for their private label chemical products
#3 Launch an Effective Website
Once you have some marketing materials assembled, you have the ingredients with which to build out your website. Remember that a website is not a brochure, although it can sell; it’s not a user guide, although it can explain how to use your product; it’s not a product catalog, although it can display all your products. Your website can house all of these various aspects, but they must be packaged in a way that’s easy to digest.
Characteristics of Strong Sites
Content needs to be organized logically because people at different stages of the customer journey will visit it, from having no idea who you are to being a return customer. Effective organization will be key to provide a clear path for each group to follow, whether they want to learn more about your company or your broader industry, or they want to buy a product or get in touch with you.
Your site should also be visually appealing and presented effectively because if it has a poor design or layout, the majority of customers won’t come back. It also needs to be synced with your brand, and optimized for search (SEO) so that people who are interested in your area of expertise can find you.
Choosing the Right Website Builder
Using a website builder such as Squarespace lets you avoid having to reinvent the wheel–you can just modify a template website, of which many are available, with your own personal touches. You can also easily incorporate e-commerce functions through the Shopify add-on. If you need help with the content, there are numerous freelance writing service sites where you can find professional help.
If your website requires more flexibility, WordPress–the most popular content management system (CMS) on the web–comes with greater customization, a large library of third-party plugins for added features, and thousands of themes to choose from.
Pro Tip: Mind the Fold
Studies show that you have literally a matter of seconds to make a good impression on your website visitors. So don’t make them hunt for how you can help them–get your value proposition right at the top so that they don’t have to scroll down (on either desktop or mobile).
#4 Market Through the Right Channels
Segmenting your market into groups allows you to create distinct profiles for your customers and then target them with the appropriate channel.
For example, with B2B cleaning chemicals, you may wish to divide the cleaning chemicals audience by the type of end-user (e.g. commercial, institutional, manufacturing, etc.) or by geography. This will whittle down the number of appropriate channels, whereas a B2C business will have more options.
Although your mileage may vary, in general, these are the marketing channels to prioritize with your chemical business:
Email marketing has a lot going for it. It’s inexpensive, easily personalized, and highly effective, because to get a customer’s email address, you’ve already interacted with them (they signed up for a newsletter, they’re an existing customer, etc.), and you have an established relationship.
Also, unlike social media platforms and search results pages, you own your email list. Even if other channels change on a whim, you will always have your mailing list.
You can use email marketing to…
- stay in touch with customers
- convey offers, sales, and other pricing information
- alert customers to new product ideas
- update stakeholders on company developments, new blog posts, etc., i.e. send a newsletter
The downside of email marketing is your email list can take time to build. Even so, don’t give into the temptation to buy an email list; that’s a big no-no.
With over half of humanity now using it in some capacity, social media continues to be one of the most promising and lucrative marketing channels. Although it’s generally free, it takes time to build a following, so you want to avoid expending any effort on channels your customers aren’t likely to use to find you. Taking a look at your competitors’ channels can help inform your own research on your customer demographics.
Much or all of the same content you would include in an email can be shared on social media. It’s also a good idea to share posts from manufacturers, industry journals, and other accounts that your audience may be interested in.
Example: The Seatex LinkedIn Page
Seatex uses its LinkedIn corporate page to share info on new hires, job openings, and new product lines, as well as interact with customers and ‘friend’ pages such as the American Chemistry Council.
Paid Digital Advertising
Display ads and PPC (pay-per-click) and PPI (pay-per-impression) ads are an excellent way to supplement your organic advertising efforts for your business. The former are particularly helpful in remarketing to target customers who visited your site, although they can be negated by ad blockers. The latter lets you jump ahead of the pack in search rankings to get your ad in front of potential customers based on their search terms.
Whatever budget you have to start with, use a variety of platforms, ad formats, and ad content/offers to get a feel for what works and what doesn’t. Determining success doesn’t come down to a single metric, but rather considering several–such as impressions, conversions, and viewers–along with A/B testing to get a true picture.
Pro Tip: Do Your Push-ups and Pull-ups
You’ll get the best results from your paid ads by keeping in mind how they work. Search ads pull in customers with high intent or interest in your area of business. Display ads push customers in your direction by making them aware of your business. Budgeting for separate campaigns with different landing pages for each respective type of ad is key to achieving optimal advertising results.
As popular as digital marketing is, there is still a strong demand for non-internet-related marketing among chemical buyers. Although offline marketing includes TV ads and billboards, many chemical businesses find that in-person contexts work best for their products or services.
For example, trade shows offer a great opportunity to create customer relationships. If you can perform a live demo of your product in action, so much the better.
Getting involved in your community with local organizations or your chamber of commerce can create brand recognition and goodwill, as well.
#5 Harness the Power of Video
Videos make for great, shareable content for all your marketing channels and they can achieve a number of different goals.
As we’ve covered, demo videos are always helpful and can make a big impact for a cleaning chemical product. How-to videos are a similar story. Informative or educational videos can help establish credibility for your brand and give people a reason to follow you on social media.
Getting Started With Video
It takes very little to begin making videos. You can shoot high-quality video on an iPhone, while a business channel on YouTube is free. The video doesn’t need to be slickly produced; a casual style is acceptable and simple editing effects done with free software should be fine.
If real-world shots are difficult or impossible to arrange for a particular video, animation can be a very effective medium, although you’ll likely need to budget some funds for its creation by a professional animation person/team.
Did You Know?
More than nine out of 10 consumers want to see more online video content from brands. And they don’t need to be exhaustive–over half of consumers prefer videos of less than 3 minutes.
#6 Ongoing Content Creation
A website that doesn’t change is just a digital brochure (for which you’re paying your web host every year). Trends and tastes in both chemicals themselves and consumer preferences change, and the content to attract and retain customers has to adapt with them.
Find Your Publishing Rhythm
Creating a content calendar is a helpful way to make sure you’re hitting all of your channels consistently, and consistency is key in content creation. Whether you settle on a monthly blog article or a daily (or multiple-times-per-day) social media posting routine, sticking to the schedule looks more professional and thought-out to your audience and improves your credibility.
When it comes to the frequency of generating new content, you can only do so much, especially if you’re a smaller chemical company with no marketing department. For building brand awareness, posting once per week should be fine, but aim for a mixture of content: infographics, employee spotlights, thoughts about your company’s core values, etc.
Pro Tip: Always Have a Plan
It’s easy to lose focus with the content you are creating. That’s why it’s important to have a plan. With each piece of content, before you create it you should ask yourself who the audience is and what they’re trying to achieve by consuming that content. What is the reader looking for and what can someone do with the information you provide? Is there a more specific page you have? Do you have a product to show? A survey to take? A case study?
More broadly, each piece of content should also fit your overall content plan that suits customers from different segments and at different stages of the buying journey.