Redefining the Manufacturer’s Path Forward

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Andrew Walker
Andrew Walker, CEO

Shift7 Digital

 

Manufacturing cannot continue to rely on their sales & distribution approach, and instead need to start selling through their own digital experiences and platforms allowing them to promote their product – on their terms.”

Andrew Walker, CEO of Shift7 Digital is a pioneering leader having an impressive career spanning more than 23 years in the digital experience and technology space. The secret of the steadfast leader’s success is believing in the philosophy of “Love Over Fear”.  “This has served me well. When faced with doubt, challenge, or anxiety, I think about this phrase. By choosing Love in situations, I take advantage of life, I am more grateful, realize more joy, and feel proud of my choices,” says Andrew. “This simple philosophy has allowed me to transform myself.” Andrew is leading Shift7 – a full-service digital agency specializing in the needs of B2B clients—to new heights through his expertise in experience design, marketing, and digital technologies. Shift7 specializes in taking what is traditionally an antiquated market—Manufacturing—and set them on course to a more successful future using innovative technology and digital solutions. Essentially, Shift7 ensures 100-year old organizations stay in business for the next 100 years. Over the last 25 years, Andrew and his team have excelled in client services and consulting opportunities.

“We embrace relationships as the core of our business in every way. Take a look at your keyboard. When you hit the Shift key with the number 7, it creates the “&” symbol,” explains Andrew about the company’s unique name. “This represents the ethos of everything we do. Every partnership is a collaboration and every idea is followed by another. The “&” empowers how every brand will better connect with their customers. Shift7 Digital harnesses the power of &.”

Solving Disruption in Manufacturing

According to Andrew, the Manufacturing sector is facing significant disruption and has not yet completely embraced digital experiences, channels, and technologies. “For most manufacturers, the distribution channels have been fairly static for decades, using sales representatives and wholesale distributors to develop and maintain relationships with their customers,” explains Andrew. “This is how manufacturers are selling their products today — through resellers or distributors that operate brick-and-mortar retail stores. The disruption those channels are facing is due to competing private label brands, overall brand loyalty, Amazon Basics, and simply put – more empowered buyers.” Shift7 believes, Manufacturing cannot continue to rely on their outdated approach, and instead need to start selling through their own digital experiences and platforms allowing them to promote their product, showcase and price their product through online channels where they actually own the experience. “If Manufacturing companies do not take these strategic steps, it will become difficult to grow, defend, or even survive. These disruptive forces are happening, but with it comes an incredible opportunity for the future,” adds Andrew.

Shift7 assists Manufacturing clients with defining their multi-year strategy, and incorporate the series of design and build activities that create a modern digital experience for their end-customers.  Shift7’s clients, like USG, Corning, Johnson Controls, and Kohler, are witnessing numerous challenges in their digital experiences as the solutions and tools are either outdated, not user-friendly, inconsistent with the brand, or were simply nonexistent. Shift7 develops a  strategic roadmap to guide the creation and optimization of digital experiences, developing an agile “test and learn” approach to building new digital capabilities, leading to a faster speed to market and greater alignment with customer needs.  Shift7 provided more robust data across the entire site, leading to a greater understanding of user engagement with product information, marketing campaigns, digital tools, and site functionality. This enhanced the site performance, including an increase in downloads, search result clickthroughs, and order sample requests.

Above from the Rest

Shift7’s key differentiating factors from their competitors include the few strategies they continue to maintain including focusing on relationships, culture and go to market strategy which can enhance the customer’s productivity. Shift7 is looking to continue its expansion of core offerings with more emphasis on experience and digital marketing. Andrew has significant plans to recruit and hire great talent in those areas. “Our business is moving very fast, with high demand for our services.   We are looking to expand our geographical footprint in 2019 and 2020 to opening offices in Austin TX and Los Angeles CA to better service clients in those respective regions,” adds Andrew..