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Increase in the number of prospects
Increase in prospect conversions with sales
Person increase in average registration per webinar
Headquarters: Minneapolis, MN
Protolabs is a leading digital manufacturing source for rapid prototyping and on-demand production. The company produces custom parts and assembles them in as fast as one day with automated 3D printing, CNC machining, sheet metal fabrication and injection molding processes. Its digital approach to manufacturing enables accelerated time to market, reduces development and production costs, and minimizes risk throughout the product life cycle.
The manufacturing industry has changed drastically within the past 50 years. On the cusp of the fourth industrial revolution, Protolabs is upending the traditional manufacturing process by making every step digital or online-based. The end result is that Protolabs speeds up the manufacturing process, producing items within days instead of months.
The Machine Learning and AI technologies that define the fourth industrial revolution are difficult to understand and hard to manage.
This means many manufacturing companies struggle to educate channel partners and prospective clients on the complex solutions and products these new technologies can provide.
Protolabs recognized this education gap and decided to make a difference. First, it presented customers and clients with relevant, valuable and digestible content. By leading with value, Protolabs established itself as a trusted resource and thought leader within the industry—leading to an increase in prospects and customer conversions. But, to achieve this, it required a shift in marketing strategy.
To establish itself as a trusted resource, Protolabs had to change its strategy from a sales-centric approach targeting prospects to a thought leadership model serving to attract and engage prospects and ultimately accelerating the sales cycle in the long term. To accomplish this, it had to ensure all content and tactics reflected the company’s digital model and positioning. It needed to maintain the image and standards it had worked so hard to create.
The company decided to focus on a webinar strategy that would complement Protolab’s digital transformation initiative. Webinars would become the go-to method to catapult thought leadership content. These events would include video shorts, monthly design tips, case studies and overall deep dives into a wide variety of manufacturing topics, helping Protolab establish its footprint in the marketplace.
Protolabs began looking at a number of webinar platforms that could provide that high level of digital prestige and reach a global engineering audience at scale.
“ON24 enables us to better communicate and listen to our customers, using features like polling. ON24 helps us determine marketing qualified leads and we’re able to use the data on their interests to plan our next step, giving them a seamless experience with our company.”
With the help of ON24®, Protolabs transformed its webinar program from a sales-centric, ad-hoc approach to a value-add integrated program. Instead of leading with topics like Why Protolabs for your Business, Protolabs decided to focus on hot industry topics like, CNC Machining: How to Reduce Cost and Accelerate Production and used digital experiences powered by ON24 to share their perspective with the market.
Protolabs’ change in focus to a thought leadership content marketing strategy and implementation of ON24 webinars helped it increase its prospects by 62 percent this year. From those prospects, conversion also increased by 10 percent, allowing Protolabs to be a true ongoing resource to those in the manufacturing industry.