Lead generation at any level is tricky. Using just the right pitch, leads can be converted to sales. Overcompensate or undercompensate and the lead moves on to another supplier. This is especially true of Top of the Funnel (TOFU) lead generation.
As the first stage of tugging a potential client into the atmosphere of a supplier’s services, perhaps the best analogy is the one experienced by NASA each time a manned flight returns to earth. If the angle or re-entry is too steep, the craft can break apart or burn up from the stress forces. If the angle of re-entry is too shallow, the craft can bounce off the atmosphere into the great beyond or simply float without fuel in a perpetual orbit.
Top of the funnel lead generation works in a similar manner. Oversell, or offer services not perceived or understood as relevant to a potential customer, and they will burn out in the early stage of the pitch. Undersell, and the customer may not see the value proposition and will simply bounce off the atmosphere and into the void. This is true for any company, including 3D service providers.
There is a reason that food and consumer goods companies hand out food and tester samples at retailer locations. It is the simplest and fastest way to leverage their strengths, whether it be taste or utility. If they can accomplish that, the Middle of the Funnel (consideration) and Bottom of the Funnel (Purchase) is an easier journey. For 3D service providers, it is a more difficult process because their is often an educational component to the sale, and service providers may need to explain to the customer how 3D printing can benefit them. However, 3D printing isn’t without inherent strengths for Top of the Funnel lead generation.
Design Services and the Right Angle of Entry
Using design services to capture TOFU leads can set the stage for service providers to offer additional products and apply the right angle of entry. There are several reasons for this:
Design Services have the Highest Value Proposition
Any company seeking a solution will gravitate toward the highest value proposition. While many large companies have product design staff in-house, they may not have the right software for complex 3D modelling or the skillset to bring it immediately on board. For them, design services using 3D rendering and modelling can be perceived as adding or enhancing an already robust product development infrastructure without adding cost in the form of new software, training and specialized staff.
For small to medium sized companies, the value proposition lies in the ability to test and develop iteratively without the expensive trial and error of producing or sub-contracting physical pieces. Many smaller companies have an almost exclusively outsourced development process for acquiring whole working models or key components. With fewer resources and investment dollars for product development, design services can reduce cost and speed up time to market.
Design Services Foster Product Innovation
By adding the dimension of 3D modelling, design services can promote increased innovation to potential customers. Iterative design options can include creation of sub-assemblies as entire pieces where they had previously been comprised of many parts. It also allows companies to explore the use of complex geometries with higher strengths and lower overall weight. And finally, design services allow small to medium sized companies to revamp their product development and level the playing field to operate on par with a competitor of substantially greater scale. By doing so, they can reap the benefits of reduced development time and development cost while speeding up time to market.
Design services, 3D rendering and 3D printing are valuable service offerings to any prospective customer. But like a NASA craft returning to earth, the right angle for entry is critical. By using design services for Top of the Funnel lead generation, service providers can use the product benefit to leverage its greatest strengths to open dialogue and spur action from potential customers with a high value, innovation driving resource.
ZVerse’s unique Design on Demand platform allows any company to offer 3D Design to their customers, and in turn, gather leads that they would otherwise turn away. These solutions can make ZVerse a valuable partner in breaking down the design barrier for On-Demand Manufacturing.