Motion & Flow Control Products, Inc. distributes fluid connectors, instrumentation fittings, seals, valves, and more. They also operate as a manufacturer’s representative for HVAC products, and provide engineered solutions for customers both commercial and residential.
MFCP’s ultimate brand benefit is their ability to make their customers look smart in front of their boss, their colleagues, their employees, and even their community by providing them with what they need in time. There is an added peace of mind that comes with MFCP’s expertise, and the ability to trust that inventory will be replenished, costs will be reduced, and productivity will be boosted when solutions from MFCP are implemented.
Our task was to get to how customers felt about the brand, starting with identifying and defining what could be leveraged from the foundational elements, such as perception, benefits and more. To do that, we created and expanded upon the established voice in the brand’s spoken, written and visual language and further leveraged it in a marketing plan with tactics to develop awareness and loyalty while increasing sales.
They also needed to identify the ideal customer they were trying to reach, and relate their targeted marketing messages to the unique buyer profile. Segmenting their customers was important, because MFCP engages with everyone from delivery drivers and roughnecks turning the wrenches all the way up to CEOs – from big corporations overseas to mom and pop shops right down the street.
The first step in the development of the new brand strategy was to identify and define the company’s target audience, objectives and concerns.
We spent extra time upfront gathering additional, critical information prior to meeting with the MFCP team. This extra time meant that we could ask more knowledgeable, penetrating questions that got to the heart of their beliefs and concerns when it came time for an enciteful™ planning session, a one-and-a-half day process in which we brought people together to cultivate strategic, meaningful ideas, from which the brand was enhanced. The session not only allowed us to immerse ourselves into MFCP’s business, but also helped us to understand their overall business goals, key competitors, and their strategic platform for the future.
Following the enciteful™ planning session, we began an in-depth audit of how MFCP was expressing itself through current visual communications, and conducted interviews with MFCP employees. These interviews helped us to articulate the company’s brand promise and define its values, which subsequently turned into their design system and became the basis for all creative work that we explored and presented.
The first of our final deliverables was the Brand Brief: a living, breathing document designed to be shared with all employees and referred to often. This document included high-level key messages, clear message points for use in developing the verbal toolbox, positioning statements, logo and brand identity, and organizational attributes and value proposition considerations.
The second deliverable we developed was a new set of ideal customer personas designed to take a deeper dive into who exactly MFCP is trying to reach, and why. We looked at a variety of factors, including values, motivations, pain points, mindset, likes and interests, and even possible questions that could come up in an onboarding meeting. From this generalized information, we then developed a “customer avatar” that served as a visual representation of the person that is their ideal customer.
This integrated marketing material was implemented to not only drive sales, but to increase brand perception from the inside out. When we were creating these personas, we felt the message and imagery provided an opportunity to re-emphasize why MFCP communicates a certain look and feel, and how employees and salespeople can be better ambassadors of that brand image.
We had a couple different target audiences when it came to this client.
The main target audience for MFCP was broken into two segments – branch and regional managers on one level, and CEOs on the next.
The first group was comprised mostly of men, age 35 to 60 in management positions in industries like construction, manufacturing, and the like. They are on the more blue-collar end of the spectrum, and they enjoy the simple things in life – providing for their family, catching a football game every now and then, and enjoying a beer at the end of the work day. They engage with MFCP so that they can get a quick fix, a part here and there, and some trusted advice.
The second group was made up of executives from industries like aerospace, power generation and oil and gas. Again, they skew male, and are a little older than their counterparts – 45 to 65 on average. They’re well-informed and technically capable, but they need quick and easy access to specific information when something goes wrong. If a rig goes down, they are losing money by the minute, and their boss will blame them. At the end of the day, they needed a partner who would have their back and make quick, safe decisions.
When it came to our personas, the main target audience for MFCP were the internal salespeople and retail employees using the customer personas as tools in their sales kits. It is these salespeople who could then develop a relationship with the potential customer, so we felt that they were our primary objective.
The second target audience was the rest of the employee base, from hourly workers to the executive team. Everyone should know who exactly the company is targeting, what motivates them, and what messages they might respond to. After all, a receptionist or store clerk could run into a person who perfectly matches the profile at a party. Everyone is a potential lead generator.
Work for MFCP was a success and received a lot of positive feedback from employees and stakeholders alike. After unveiling the new brand identity and applying it across the company’s communication touch points, MFCP engagement with potential customers grew by a wide margin.
Additionally, MFCP’s Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) program grew by seven million dollars – from approximately $32 to $39 million in less than a year. As of just a few months ago, combined annual sales equaled $160 million, increasing by an unbelievable 62%! While we can’t take all the credit for these numbers, the sales tools we developed for MFCP throughout our work with them (including the ideal client personas) were undeniably effective when correctly employed by salespeople, and led to a significant increase in brand awareness, engagement, revenues and relationships.
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