Five Questions for Dan Laninga, Marketing Manager for Cygnus

Dan Laninga is Marketing Manager for Cygnus, makers of wall mounted and mobile computing workstations for healthcare. He is in a niche market and located in a relatively remote part of America. To say Laninga and his company face challenges when it comes to finding leads and maintaining client engagement is like saying it gets chilly in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. But Laninga knows that especially in today’s digitally connected world, the only limits are those of the imagination.
1. You’re a small company in Northern Michigan, how are you using social media and other new media to promote your business and engage with customers?
We started out using LinkedIn to connect with healthcare professionals. Using the group discussions we post questions about product enhancements and features as well as engage in various discussions.
From there we learned about other sites that had user forums and discussion boards. In total, we’re involved in twelve industry-related user groups that allow announcements, discussions, and multi-media uploads.
We are also using Twitter, Facebook and our own blog to convey information about product updates, regulation updates and other healthcare-related issues.
2. Let’s talk specifically about technology you’ve employed on the Cygnus site and how it’s helping you generate leads and extend engagement?
We’ve been using a product called Leadlander, which has revolutionized the way we prospect. The site tracks traffic on the site and tells you what facility the user is coming from and what they are looking at. The topper is that the site also gives you an employee list of individuals who are on LinkedIn, if there are any. The sales reps then connect with the individual who would best fit our ideal contact. We also code links so we know which social media outlet is generating traffic.
3. Have you seen results with these approaches?
Within a few weeks after regular posting and responding in group discussions I managed to close a deal for $90,000 to another group member. We’ve been able to get valuable feedback about product development from the people that actually USE our products daily. It’s like getting the inside scoop about the technology they are using, the way they use particular products or problems they have in their daily routine.
We’ve also been able to get international exposure. Since we started using various outlets we’ve been receiving many requests for quotes from across the globe.
4. Are clients or prospects ever surprised by your engagement with new media?
We’ve had several resellers of our products mention that they heard of us and our products through various sites or groups. Social media has helped keep customers close, connected and educated on what we do.
5. Do you keep tabs on the competition? Are they as involved in new media? Anyone out there leading the pack?
Our competition is hardly on the social media radar at all. Several individuals have LinkedIn accounts but they only have 5-10 connections. I’d have to say in our industry we are leading the pack in social engagement.

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One Response to Five Questions for Dan Laninga, Marketing Manager for Cygnus

  1. Now that's marketing in 2010! Nice work Mr. Laninga!

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