Silver Ships designs and builds a variety of aluminum, all-welded boats, each with unique qualities and specifications. Therefore, it was imperative to develop strategic key messages to highlight the vessels individually as well as Silver Ships as a company. TRINDGROUP had the answer, and the positive results were virtually immediate.
To begin, the TRINDGROUP team dove into Silver Ships’ industry, audited its current marketing materials and researched in-market competitors. From the findings, a target audience was determined and key messages were developed to specifically reach that audience.
Once the audience was solidified, TRINDGROUP’s communications team went to work creating an overarching marketing strategy with a focus on supporting Silver Ships’ sales efforts through digital marketing, design, photography, video, social media, public relations and other tactics. With a plan in place and goals determined, implementation of the strategy began across all fronts.
The key to creating impactful social media content is putting strategy behind it. Silver Ships uses Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram to share news and promote its vessels, so TRINDGROUP began by developing individual strategies for each outlet. What type of content would draw in new followers, while also increasing engagement among current followers? How can interactions with other vendors and stakeholders be instigated? When should advertising be considered? TRINDGROUP sought to answer these questions and, in effect, improve Silver Ships’ social media presence.
With the overarching target audience in mind, TRINDGROUP developed monthly content calendars with posts using language, images and videos to speak directly to said audience. The content was adapted to fit the outlet it was to be posted on, was posted regularly and highlighted a mixture of informative and promotional material. Additionally, when the Silver Ships team attended trade shows, TRINDGROUP posted content in real time at each show and included interactions with those in attendance, resulting in improved engagement across each platform.
Within the first six months of working with TRINDGROUP, Silver Ships’ Facebook followers grew by 3.4 percent, LinkedIn followers grew by 23.6 percent and Instagram followers grew by 185.7 percent.
When it came to boosting posts and developing advertising opportunities on social media, Silver Ships tended toward Facebook advertising to best reach its target audience. Keeping strategy in mind, TRINDGROUP worked with Silver Ships to create a budget and pinpointed audience to boost to, and the TRINDGROUP design team developed specific graphics to meet Facebook advertising regulations. The results of each boosted post have included new Facebook followers, increased engagement on current posts and overall improved brand awareness for Silver Ships.
Silver Ships designs and produces dozens of vessels each year for many different state, federal, military and private organizations across the country. In order to maximize brand awareness, TRINDGROUP uses public relations tactics to share these newsworthy contract awards, deliveries and commissionings with the media and other stakeholders.
In July of 2017, Silver Ships delivered a multi-mission fire/rescue vessel to East Hampton, New York. Accompanying the vessel’s delivery was a “splash down” commissioning event, in which the media, town citizens, fire and police personnel were invited to meet the vessel’s namesake and tour the vessel. While contacts in East Hampton coordinated the event, TRINDGROUP took charge of distributing a news release, video footage and photos of the boat to both local media and industry publications. The results were placements in 12 printed and online publications, which reached approximately 9.12 million audience members.
Additionally, as a result of building relationships with industry publications, the East Hampton vessel was featured in a later issue that highlighted it as one of the top small vessels in America for 2017 and another that featured its high quality design and build specs.
Google Analytics and SEO
Though Silver Ships had an existing and highly functional website for TRINDGROUP to use as a marketing tool, there were no tracking mechanisms in place upon the start of their relationships. TRINDGROUP immediately installed Google Analytics to the website in order to dive deeper into Silver Ships’ target audience, referral channels and overall web traffic. After six months of using Google Analytics tracking, Silver Ships saw an increase in traffic of 21.5 percent and an increase in new sessions of 3.8 percent. Silver Ships continued seeing an increase in traffic, new visitors and the amount of time users spend on each page.
Based on monthly website tracking analysis, TRINDGROUP is working to improve Silver Ships’ website even further by taking into consideration the initial landing pages visitors fall to, search terms people use when finding Silver Ships and more. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is crucial for having an outstanding digital presence, and TRINDGROUP has been implementing key words and tags to further improve Silver Ships’ searchability and organic search placement. A website is a living organism, so TRINDGROUP will continue to work with the Silver Ships team to make sure the website is as comprehensive and clear to the target audience as possible.
Though TRINDGROUP’s main goal has been improving Silver Ships’ digital brand presence, printed material has also proven to be an impactful tool for the sales team. With this in mind, TRINDGROUP developed a high-quality collateral piece featuring fire boats to be used at trade shows and other in-person sales opportunities.
The process began with TRINDGROUP diving into the fire boat sales process and translating it into eye-catching graphics and attention-grabbing content. With original photography available for use, TRINDGROUP’s creative team went to work designing a 12-page piece unlike any Silver Ships had used in the past. Complete with discreet stitching and a soft-coated cover, the collateral piece proved to be a hit when distributed at its trade show debut.
The piece will be converted into a digital version to be housed on the website and easily sent via email to potential customers.
In addition to developing physical pieces for Silver Ships, TRINDGROUP also shoots on-site photography and video of various vessels in action, complete with professional editing. These images are used as banners on the website, social media graphics, trade show listings, public relations distributions and more.
Continuing Marketing Efforts
As TRINDGROUP continues to work with Silver Ships to grow its marketing strategy in order to reach its overall sales goals, new tactics will be implemented and growth will be measured over time. Marketing and public relations is always changing, and TRINDGROUP is dedicated to giving clients, including Silver Ships, the best and most innovative work possible to make a noticeable impact on the company’s brand.