By this I mean, are you an engineer? A logical, left-brain smarty pants? Here at Roberts, we recently published What Makes Engineers Tick: 6 Ways to Understand and Influence these Modern Makers. It discusses marketing to people like my mom—based on our one-on-one interviews with her (and several other engineers), primary research polling, secondary research, and industry intelligence. Using my beloved mother as an example, I’ve come up with my own top five list to help you better understand these quirky creatures.
1. They’re smart, savvy problem solvers.
It’s simply their nature to solve complex challenges. Sometimes that could be “When did my daughter get home last night?” or “Did she really stay at her friend’s house or go to a party?” Over the years I’ve appropriately nicknamed her “Sherlock Holmes.” Throughout high school, she’d ask the right questions and uncover the right evidence. Scenarios such as “Oh, so you say you were home at 10? Well, the hood of your car would’ve been cooler in temperature by now if that was the case.” She was like a K9 dog hot on my trail, allowing me to only get away with about 15% of the things I thought I could sneak by her.
2. They employ a logical approach to just about any task. They do their own research and make their own conclusions.
Talk about SPREADSHEETS GALORE. Whether it was finances for vacations, selecting a college, or deciding whether to take a high-deductible or co-pay health plan, Excel was my mom’s best friend. She set up her own hypothesis that the HDHP would be less expensive, but kept a spreadsheet as if she was using both plans. She wanted the hard data to prove it because in an engineer’s mind, logic and fact trump all. And by golly, after a year of patience, she discovered she was right.
3. They do their due diligence when it comes to research.
In fact, 84% of industrial professionals use the internet to find components, equipment, services, and compare across suppliers, visiting 10+ websites to make it happen. In comparison, I cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard from my mom that I “jump the gun without surveying the scene.” I’m too impatient and don’t take the time to first check out everything available to me.
4. They like to be in control (or at least feel like they are). And plan, plan, plan.
I remember getting ready for camping trips as a kid (mind you, two weeks in advance) and seeing my mom’s lists on the fridge. For example, I was able to read what we were having for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a snack each day of our week-long trip—and know the utensils and cooking items needed to make it. As you can imagine for my brother and me, this had its pros and cons.
5. They’re drawn to the latest tech gadgets with an innate ability to self-educate.
Most Millennials are tech-savvy and teach their parents how to use the latest and greatest innovations. WRONG. My mom is the one who taught me how to install hardware and troubleshoot my laptop. She didn’t know it all at first, but she researched, watched videos, read product reviews, and figured it out for me from across the country when I was at school in California. Who needs technical support anyway? Go figure—engineers enjoy absorbing information most in the forms of instructional videos, case studies, and live webinar events.
So what else makes engineers tick? How do you best reach them? For all of this and more, check out the ebook.