5 Insights Suppliers Need To Know: ZOOMcatalog Industry Marketing Report

The results of the first ZOOMcatalog Industry Marketing Report are in. Recently, we conducted an Industry Marketing Survey and collected information from suppliers and distributors on their 2020 performance and 2021 expectations.

We’ve wrapped up all the answers into a cohesive report—which you can read right here—but we also pulled out 5 key insights suppliers need to know.

1. Digital catalog distribution is the future. 

This shouldn’t be surprising, especially with the last year we’ve experienced. Suppliers and distributors are moving more online. 

What suppliers said: 90% of suppliers said that they expect catalog distribution to move away from print and towards digital distribution this year, while another 50% said they will be focusing exclusively on digital catalogs in 2021. 

What distributors said: 88% of distributors said that they anticipate the same trend in 2021.

How to use this insight: Start rethinking your catalog and flyer strategy with an eye towards digital-only and take advantage of the versatility of digital marketing materials. Consider producing just one print catalog, and then breaking it out into smaller, more targeted digital pieces like niche catalogs and flyers.

Flyers, for example, are easy to create and highly effective. We recommend publishing fresh flyers on a regular basis to help you stay top of mind. This will expand your reach by giving distributors more focused materials to work with, and since it’s all digital, the strategy isn’t cost-prohibitive.  

2. Digital flyers are exploding.

This is one stat we can get behind. 

Digital catalogs are great for marketing for everything from full product lines to holiday events and even niche markets, but when it comes to hyper-targeting specific customer groups or focusing on just a handful of products (perhaps even a single product), nothing beats flyers.

What suppliers said: 78% of suppliers use digital flyers in the marketing. 

What distributors said: 80% of distributors use digital flyers in their marketing efforts. 

How to use this insight: Create digital flyers to highlight trends, specific product features, seasonal events, and more. Flyers allow you to dig deep into one topic, which allows distributors to target specialized niches and requests. 

Maximize your digital flyer reach: 

  • Upload your flyers to your ZOOMcatalog dashboard and set both a go-live and an expiration date. 
  • When your flyer goes live, it will automatically appear on ZOOMcatalog.com, our partner portals, distributor websites, your website, and our weekly New Catalogs and Flyers email. That’s right—automatically.
  • Share your flyers on social media, include them in your email campaigns, and give distributors the options to customize them for even greater impact.

3. Customization is key.

Customization is key when it comes to getting your marketing into the hands of your customers. It’s the finishing touch that every distributor needs to effectively market your products.

What suppliers said: 60% of suppliers make their catalogs customizable.

What distributors said: 60% of distributors customize catalogs before sending them to end-buyers, while 80% wish they had more content to customize. 

How to use this insight: Create your catalogs with customization in mind (aka leave white space on the cover for a distributor’s logo and make sure to exclude your own contact information from the book). Then, hop onto ZOOMcatalog where you can upload your digital catalog for distributors to customize with their own branding. Distributors will then customize the catalogs before uploading them to their website, social media accounts, sharing them with end-buyers, and more.

4. Sales and marketing are moving to the inbox.  

As if email marketing needed a boost, COVID-19 made it the primary marketing tool for most businesses in 2020. Now, more and more suppliers are using email marketing to share digital catalogs.

What suppliers said: 78% of suppliers use email marketing to distribute their digital catalogs.

What distributors said: 74% of distributors use email marketing as their primary means of sharing product information. 

How to use this insight: Distributors use email marketing to promote their business and close sales, so make sure you’re giving them the digital catalogs and flyers that they can incorporate into their email marketing campaigns. 

5. Video should be in your next catalog.

What suppliers said: 61% of suppliers said they produce and shoot video content, while only 12% use video inside their catalog.

What distributors said: 64% of distributors do not produce video content.

How to use this insight: Only 12% of suppliers add video to their digital catalogs, so this is your chance to stand out. Be the supplier who crushes video and distributors will be encouraged to use it for their marketing. Check out our guide to creating videos that will grow your sales.

There’s plenty more where this came from…

Suppliers take note—these are the tactics and strategies our industry leaders are making a priority in 2021. There’s plenty more information on what suppliers and distributors experienced in 2020 and what their expectations are for the coming year in our full Industry Marketing Report.

And if you’re looking for something more one-on-one insights, schedule a consultation with our team to talk strategy and how ZOOMcatalog can help.