US Manufacturing adds 31,000 jobs in February 2018

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According to Industrial Supply Magazine and the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the United States manufacturing sector added 31,00 new jobs in February 2018. 

Within the manufacturing industry, employment rose in transportation equipment (+8,000), fabricated metal products (+6,000), machinery (+6,000), and primary metals (+4,000). Over the past year, manufacturing has added 224,000 jobs.


Manufacturing Index Reaches 14-Year High in February

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From Industrial Supply Magazine:

Manufacturing expanded in February as the Institute for Supply Management's purchasing index registered 60.8 percent, an increase of 1.7 percentage points from the January reading of 59.1 percent.

“This indicates growth in manufacturing for the 18th consecutive month at strong levels led by continued expansion in new orders, production activity, employment and inventories, with suppliers continuing to struggle delivering to demand. The PMI at 60.8 percent is the highest level of expansion seen since May 2004, when it reached 61.4 percent,” said Timothy R. Fiore, chair of the ISM Manufacturing Business Survey Committee.

A reading above 50 percent indicates that the manufacturing economy is generally expanding; below 50 percent indicates that it is generally contracting.

For more information, click here.

Industrial Supply Magazine Publishes Feature Story on Rivet|MRO and our Co|optimizer Program

After seeing huge sums of manufacturer co-op funds go wasted or unclaimed for years, a former ITW marketing exec is changing the co-op game for independent industrial distributors.

“When I was on the manufacturer side, co-op funds were a bit of a conundrum,” says Tim Rasmussen, principal of Rivet|MRO, a marketing consulting firm focused on the unique needs of industrial clients. “On one hand, the large national distributors were built to extract every dime of co-op funds available to them—and they had the marketing teams to put those funds to use. But it’s the polar-opposite with the regionals.”

Rasmussen says regional distributors—even larger ones—have been at a disadvantage because of resource limitations…until now. “Regional distributors simply don’t have the staff to claim all the co-op money available to them. And they generally don’t have the marketing team to put those funds to use in an impactful way. Only a small fraction of independent distributors claim significant co-op funds. Even then, they are typically used for promotional products, not targeted marketing programs that create a lift in sales.”

“When I asked the independents why they didn’t claim their co-op funds—free money to market their business—they identified two key issues: the lack of staff time to manage the minutiae of the claims processes and the lack of executional resources. Simply put,” he says, “they hadn’t figured out how to gain access to their co-op funds or how to drive meaningful results with them.”

Rivet|MRO’s Co|optimizer co-op maximizer program changes all that, providing a resource for independent distributors to maximize the co-op money they’ve worked so hard to earn.

“It’s not just about getting the money for our clients,” says Rasmussen, “it’s about putting it to good, smart use. It’s about building the business for both the distributor and the manufacturer. We understand the MRO business and how to craft impactful targeted marketing solutions. We grow MRO.”

Rivet|MRO gives independent distributors—and their manufacturing partners—access to Fortune 200 marketing thought leadership and know-how. “We’ve been where they want to go and have the ability to tilt the playing field in their favor,” says Rasmussen. “As the industrial economy continues to grow, our clients are seeing the need to invest more in marketing. They value our ability to drive growth.”

Through the Co|optimizer co-op maximizer program, Rivet|MRO has helped independent industrial distributors across the country fund and create marketing initiatives they could never have implemented on their own. “We do a lot of video and sales promotion projects,” says Bob Stergos, Business Development Director for Rivet|MRO. “Our clients eat them up. They see the exceptional value of video in a multitude of areas—ecommerce conversion, field sales demos, email marketing, search engine optimization and more. Pair them with targeted sales promotions aimed at converting new customers and you have a huge win.”

Tyler Duke Reed, vice president of supply chain & marketing at Martin Supply in Florence, Alabama, agrees. “Using the Co|optimizer program, we have been able to take advantage of maximizing our co-op dollars while providing a better ROI to help grow our business.

Rivet|MRO produced a series of animated product/solution-based videos for us using co-op funds. Everyone was extremely impressed with the quality/concept—even our manufacturing partners are excited about them.”

“In years past, we didn’t claim many co-op marketing funds,” says Eric Wessinger, president of Richards Supply in Ft. Worth, Texas. “With Rivet|MRO’s help, that changed last year. They did all the work. They reviewed our purchase data, identified co-op programs that might be available to us, developed a marketing plan and even contacted our manufacturing partners to get their buy-in. Then they executed targeted marketing programs and sales promotions to help us get more selling opportunities. Our sales team is excited to have these fantastic new tools at their disposal. We’re already generating new business because of the Co|optimizer program.”

“When we’re working with a new prospective client, they hear our story and think—how can this be?” says John Sanders, Business Development Director. “They’re conditioned to think co-op dollars are too hard to claim and more hassle than they’re worth. Thanks to Co|optimizer, that couldn’t be further from the truth. We make it incredibly easy for independent distributors to claim the co-op funds they’ve earned—and it costs them nothing. We do all the work and they grow their business. It’s exciting to see the light turn on for them when they understand our model.”

Rasmussen has another spin on it. “Most independents operate at around a 23% margin. That nets down to somewhere between five or ten percent for most distributors. When we show them how we can help them capture $50,000 or $100,000 or even more in co-op funds, they’re impressed. Chances are, they spend nowhere near that on their own.

“But then they consider the math behind it. They ask themselves, ‘How much product do I have to sell to drive a $50,000 marketing spend for my business?’ Close to a million dollars’ worth? That’s the kind of impact we bring to our clients. It’s incredibly gratifying to see their reactions when the projects come to fruition…and the results start to come it. And it’s equally enjoyable when the manufacturers see those results—results they may have given up on when it comes to co-op marketing. Everyone wins,” says Rasmussen, “everyone wins.”

In addition to its Co|optimizer co-op maximizer program, Rivet|MRO provides strategic marketing consulting, marketing analytics, and industrial distributor-specific syndicated social media management—along with the traditional executional resources one might expect from a full-service agency.

For more information, visit and             

Top 6 B2B Marketing Tactics for Generating Qualified Sales Leads

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According to a to the 2018 DemandGen 2018 Demand Generation Benchmark Survey Report, these are the top six B2B marketing tactics for generating qualified sales leads:

  1. Events
  2. Webinars
  3. Lead Nurturing Campaigns
  4. White Papers
  5. Case Studies
  6. Videos

Rivet|MRO can assist you with all of these tactics, along with the overarching strategy that will drive their execution. Click here for examples of our work.

Click here to request the full report.

Safety Glove Market projected to be almost $10 billion by 2016

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You’ve got to hand it to the industrial safety glove market: By the year 2026, total worldwide sales will reach $9.5 billion, thanks to increased safety consciousness among both employers and consumers. That’s according to analyst firm Future Market Insights.

“Growing awareness among consumers regarding health and hygiene, mounting number of accidents at workplaces, and the need for safety against hazardous chemicals and equipment handling has fueled adoption of industrial safety gloves,” observes Yogesh Sengar, a consultant with the analyst firm.

In terms of trends, disposable gloves, Sengar says, are increasing in popularity due primarily to their comparatively lower cost compared to reusable gloves. Various OSHA standards, meanwhile, are pushing the demand for various industrial safety gloves such as neoprene gloves or nitrile gloves.

Another trend impacting the use of industrial gloves has been the rise in automation in the manufacturing sector, particularly as it has reduced the need for humans in some tasks better suited for robots. It stands to reason, then, that as robots replace people in some of the more hazardous areas of manufacturing, that the demand for personal protective equipment such as gloves could be impacted. Robots, after all, don’t need gloves.

While North America is currently the leading market for industrial gloves, the demand for such gloves in Europe is expected to outpace that of North America by 2026. In fact, even the Asia-Pacific region (excluding Japan) will be a bigger market by 2026 than North America, Sengar predicts.

The most popular type of safety glove will continue to be chemical protective gloves, followed by leather gloves. In addition, rubber insulating gloves will also represent a significant portion of the total market by 2026. The fastest-growing product type over the next eight years will be metal mesh and fabric gloves.

All told, the compound annual growth rate for industrial safety gloves between now and 2026 will be 4.6%, with the fastest growing end-user markets being pharmaceutical and food manufacturers.

Source: New Equipment Digest

Your industrial brand is 5300% more likely to rank on the first page of Google when you use videos

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Did you know that including video on a landing page can increase conversions by 80% or improve your odds of landing on the first page of Google by 5300%? 

Selecting the right type of video for your needs, your customers' interests, and the requirements of social platforms can be a lot to figure out.

Luckily, the infographic in the story below can help. First it defines four common types of marketing videos: explainer, demonstration, testimonial, and personalized.

Then it offers a graph that shows what the length of each type of video tends to be.  Finally, the graphic explains the pros and cons of displaying video on each of the most popular social platforms.

Manufacturers expect 5.1% growth in 2018

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Economic growth in the United States will continue in 2018, say the nation’s purchasing and supply management executives in the December 2017 Semiannual Economic Forecast. Expectations are for a continuation of the economic recovery that began in mid-2009, as indicated in the monthly ISM Report On Business.

The manufacturing sector is optimistic about growth in 2018, with revenues expected to increase in 16 manufacturing industries, and the non-manufacturing sector indicates that 17 of its industries will see higher revenues.

Capital expenditures, a major driver in the U.S. economy, are expected to increase by 2.7 percent in the manufacturing sector and increase by 3.8 percent in the non-manufacturing sector. Manufacturing expects that its employment base will grow by 1.2 percent, while non-manufacturing expects employment growth of 1.5 percent.

Manufacturing Summary

Expectations for 2018 are positive, as 70 percent of survey respondents expect revenues to be greater in 2018 than in 2017. The panel of purchasing and supply executives expects a 5.1 percent net increase in overall revenues for 2018, compared to a 4.6 percent increase predicted for 2017 over 2016 revenues.

The 16 manufacturing industries expecting revenue improvement in 2018 over 2017 – listed in order – are: Fabricated Metal Products; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Machinery; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Computer & Electronic Products; Transportation Equipment; Plastics & Rubber Products; Primary Metals; Paper Products; Textile Mills; Chemical Products; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Furniture & Related Products; Printing & Related Support Activities; and Petroleum & Coal Products. 

Manufacturing purchasing and supply executives expect to see growth in 2018. They are optimistic about their overall business prospects for the first half of 2018, with business continuing to expand through the second half of 2018.

In 2017, manufacturing experienced 11 straight months of growth from January through November, resulting in an average PMI of 57.4, as compared to 51.5 for 2016.

Respondents expect raw materials pricing pressures in 2018 to increase, and expect their profit margins will improve in 2018 over 2017. Manufacturers are also predicting growth in both exports and imports in 2018.

Respondents also expect the U.S. dollar to strengthen against all seven currencies of major trading partners in 2018, as was the case in 2017. 

The panel predicts the prices paid for raw materials will increase by 1.3 percent during the first four months of 2018, and will increase an additional 0.5 percent during the balance of the year, with an overall increase of 1.8 percent for 2018. This compares to a reported 2.1 percent increase in raw materials prices for 2017 compared with 2016.