For those who haven’t bought into social media, here’s an example of an old-old school manufacturing company that’s doing it right.

The company is RIDGID, which makes hand and power tools for several industries, including plumbing, HVAC/R, utility, industrial and electrical markets. RIDGID is a traditional manufacturer that realized social media gave the company another avenue to reach current and potential customers worldwide. They entered social media gradually and are getting good feedback from both existing and potential customers.

You don’t have to be a national or international company to take advantage of social media. Savemore Plumbing in Vancouver, British Columbia, is an example of a regional company that’s taking advantage of social media. Check our their Facebook page for ideas about how smaller companies can leverage social media.

Key components of RIDGID’s social media strategy:

Web site – When they redesigned their site, they made sure to include links to Twitter and Facebook. They also linked to their latest videos on YouTube and added product pictures to Flickr.

Forum – One of the first things they did was to introduce a forum to begin building a strong online community. They have several threads including plumbing and construction.

RIDGID promotes new products like RIDGIDConnect with social media, as well as industry events such as their annual Reputation Roadshow. The company engages its social audience by giving incentives to people who join their Facebook page and by conducting catchy contests on Twitter.

They’re doing everything right, but it was a process. The company had to think hard about its approach to social media because it’s different from traditional marketing. Whether with Facebook or Twitter, RIDGID walked before jumping in with both feet. Social media’s not rocket science, just good old-fashioned marketing using a different medium to reach your core audience.

ABOUT John Sonnhalter

Avatar photoJohn Sonnhalter is the author of the Tradesmen Insights blog and founder of Sonnhalter, a B-to-B marketing communications firm to companies that target tradesmen in construction, industrial and MRO markets.